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Monday, March 5, 2012

In my Hood

So this is where I live:

I am not sure how well I have described my apartment block previously but I would like to describe it here because I was thinking yesterday of how much I want to remember it. I sometimes read through previous posts and it is a nice nostalgic exercise. I guess the only problem is describing it in a way that you can see it too... First impression is that it is a complete dive. I have lived in some dodgy accommodation and some really nice accomodation. I would like to say it is in the midrange but that would be a lie. Lets face it... I don't pay a lot in rent and its more about location considering I don't spend that much time at home. There is a garden growing in the gutters which you can see through the holes where the rust simply can't hold on any more - but bless it for trying. I like it because it is one of those apartment buildings where the foundations are built with forever in mind and the rest is an afterthought. Solid brick walls and stairways with fittings that seem to have been attached to the walls and window frames by someone with no discernable taste or care for quality. The colour scheme features a pale pinky terracotta, not because it was painted that colour initially, just that over time and with sun and very little in the way of upkeep, the rust seems to have leaked into the paint work and the top coat has separated and torn away from the undercoat (a completely different colour) in places. The windows are thin temporary glass and the interior paint job was done without any skill or care (seriously - they didn't even try to avoid the antena outlet, power outlets or the phone socket).

Actually, funny story about the phone socket - it went missing but a call to Telstra confirmed that there was one. I went searching and found a pocket of paint on the wall behind my bed. it was bulging and a small nick with my trusty box cutter revealed that it was just a layer of paint over some white powder. I thought I had stumbled onto the previous tenants stash (if you have ever met my neighbours you wouldn't think this to be too much of a stretch) but it turns out that it was just washing powder packed around the telephone socket and then painted to make it look like it was part of the wall (a buldge in the wall more precicely) .. why would someone do that you ask? I couldn't tell you with any certainty but its this kind of stuff that makes me want to remember this apartment building.


There are a few tenants who have clearly lived there for a long long time but turn over of renters is high. Of the 28 units, I have met the inhabitants of about 8. The neighbour I know the best lives two doors down. I know him the best because he is there ALL the time. He doesn't work, drinks wine all day disguised as orange juice and describes himself as a greenie with guns... yes you heard me.. with guns. I have to admit when he told me that (a week after I moved in) I was a bit freaked out but he seems harmless enough. I think he suffers from post traumatic stress disorder but the weird part about that is that the trauma comes from a delusion that he was involved in some kind of war... what war? No idea but he would make an interesting case study for a psychologist I am sure. He has 3 cats (sometimes more) and a bird who won't eat all its seeds so he throws the leftovers to the pigeons which have taken up messy residence on the front driveway. I have the healthiest pigeon population ever and Honey can't catch them - not for lack of trying. His ute adds to the ambiance of the area because it is filled with plants (no way is it driving any place soon - in fact its purpose appears to be a second storage area but I overheard him talking on his phone the other day that he is going to buy another one). Oh and speaking of storage area... the rumor about that shed behind my apartment (and it isn't really a shed, its actually a gap between the old building at the front and the newer one built at the back that has a door) is that it was rented out to a couple of junkies a couple of years back. It's not habitable so the landlord rented it out as "storage space" although he probably knew they were living there. Because my greenie neighbour has lived in that apartment for the last 10 or 15 years, by default he got the job of maintenence man so he now gets that storage space too. Not that he does any maintenence other than silicone gluing an ice-cream container lid in gutter to cover a hole that was drenching my apartment every time it rained (big thank you for that one buddy!). He also covers the lights with cellophane - green at the moment... more ambiance.


So next door is a girl with bright orange hair whom I have only talked with once while trying to get my cat out of her aparment, upstaris is an elderly man who LOVES my cat and talks to her whenever he sees her. Seriously if it weren't for Honey I would be able to avoid everyone in my building. Aside from a few Indian families and couples scattered around who keep to themselves there are only two other apartments I seem to hear anything from. They are the ones in the middle and on one side is a fairly nice couple, they are quite young maybe 22-24. They used to throw massive parties but have settled down alot since the girl got a job. They also gave away the ending of that stupid Ryan Reynolds filme "Burried" for which I could have killed them both. And now I have some new neighbours. My greenie neighbour says they are a bit bogan... I almost choked on my coffee becasue if he thinks they are bogan... well I can only imagine. But I have met them now ... there are two couples. Seriously these apartments are so small I am not sure they are true apartments - bedsit is probably a better term - and there are 4 of them crammed in there (and two dogs and I think a cat). They have monster cars and according to greenie neighbour the guys are on parole. Apparently they have anger management issues and are maybe going to jail for assault with a motor vehicle. Now while I am not sure that there is an actual charge for that, what I think it means is that the tried to run someone (or succeeded in running someone) over with their car. And really what more is there to say about that. 

My place is never boring! And now it will be imortalised in blog form.

xox Love to all
Jane
     

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