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post 51 on Saturday 26th January 2008 at 09:00

South Bank Au Revoir!

Scarily like South BankTo those who don't know, I bought and moved into my house: 13 Oak Street, South Bank, Middlesbrough, in July 2004.

During that memorable summer, I can recall jubilantly sitting with my back against the bedroom wall (there was a time when you could sit on the floor, before water started seeping up), listening to next door's wind-chimes, and feeling very peaceful, exited, and also very grown up for this was my first house! Oh the expectations, dreams, and plans I had for this place when I first moved here!

Since that time I have experienced full on disasters of Biblical proportion lightening from the sky, famine, plague, flood, and pestilence.

A selection of such include:

Rats. Rats in the house. Rats outside of the house. Rats in the alley. Just rats!!

Mice in the toaster. Really. In the time it took me to pop a crumpet in the toaster, a crafty mouse had crept into my beautiful (£35) Morphy Richards four-slice, and was still nibbling away whilst I plunged down the handle, at the same time wondering why there was an unusual resistance in the plunge, and subsequently pondering the whiff of burning hair mingled with the smell of crumpet. Curiously, the mouse survived; although the toaster was relegated to the shelf.

Slugs. Many a morning I come downstairs to find a silver trail leading from the front door to wherever it is my invertebrate friends drag themselves to during the night. Also, in a strange yet amusing travesty, are sometimes seen feasting on the odd stray salted peanut in the kitchen. Amusingly, this only happens between the hours of 2:00am to 6:00am.

Flies. And bluebottles.

Draining Power. Dim-witted next-door neighbours - the "Power Rangers" - who wired their meter through our meter.

Cutting power. Resulting in our power being cut on Boxing Day.

The kitchen flooding. Came back from holiday to find the rats had chewed through the washing machine pipes resulting in a half a meter flood of the kitchen.

Lack of central heating. How anyone lives in a house like mine I'll never know.

Rising damp. A botanists dream, my house is probably home to innumerable species of fungi and mushroom.

Things got a little better when my brother moved in. Even though he now, too, was required to live with afore mentioned difficulties, at least I had somebody to share life's problems with; and, I'd like to verify at this stage, that Nick's a tough wee soul, and like the true Capricorn mountain goat, is hardy and not adverse to tough conditions.

Not to mention the crimes:
Breaking windows in the car three times
Smashing my front windows twice
Cutting my phone lines

And inconveniences:
Four Police men storming my house to gain access to the back alley

So you could hardly blame me for being very pleased that we'll be out of here in six weeks.

Watch out Guisborough! The South Bank intelligentsia are coming your way.

tags: [ 13 oak street ] [ crime ] [ domestics ] [ guisborough ] [ south bank ]