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Thursday, June 11, 2009

This Old House

We'll have lived in this house twenty-one years on Saturday. I'm not a big one for birthdays and anniversaries but I'm feeling oddly sentimental about this fact.

We were telling somebody about it yesterday. "Do you like your house?" he asked. Well, it has one unique feature. It has been Our House so long that it ceased being something you could assess the likeability of decades ago. After twenty-one years we are intimately familiar with its every noise, creak, sticking door, loose tile and eccentric flushing action. We can find our way around it in pitch darkness.

When we moved in the two kids were small enough to have barely any recollection of the previous place and the third had yet to come along. There's a lot taken place under its roof, whose slates, I note, could do with a little attention. I note also that a digit has dropped off the house number, meaning couriers have to use their powers of deduction. There are many improvements we would make if we were in the first flush of ownership. But it's strange how your view of house ownership changes in twenty-one years. We don't cast envious eyes on anyone else's pile or think life would be better if we had more space or a rural address.

Somebody asked the other day if we would ever move. While I was thinking about it, the GLW issued a statement on our behalf. We would only move, she said, if the neighbours moved out and were replaced by people we didn't get on with. She's right. Of course.