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05 July 2014 @ 06:14 pm
Househunting continues!  
We had plans to be in Canberra this weekend. Alas, househunting it was! But only three, because we had pre-culled our list of potentials.

The first place ticked a lot of boxes: quiet streets, four minutes from the train, three minutes from the bus, lovely big verandah to sit on at the front, sunny garden at back, front and side, plain but large rooms. The current tenants were still there and we had just started to chat with them about their magnificent dog when a plane went overhead. The house shook. We looked at each other with a wild surmise, silent upon a peak in … no, hang on, with abject horror. Yes, that's the one.

Seeing our expression, he leaned forward and whispered, 'ALL DAY!' His partner checked to see the agent was well out of earshot and added, 'And the next-door neighbours shriek and stomp.'

'Oh dear,' I said. 'We are a quiet people …'

'Us too,' they replied. 'That's why we're moving.'

So no to that house, but I would have loved to take the dog: Great Dane crossed with black laborador. Huge and huggy!

The next house was brilliant. Classic Edwardian with leadlight glass, mouldings and railings throughout. Good garden filled with epiphytes and woodland plants. Small kitchen and bathroom, but wholly usable, second lavatory, a glassed-in verandah at the front that would be perfect for the cats, a mad warren of rooms that would fit in all our bookshelves and allow for everyone to have space for everything – and every one had doors opening onto each adjacent door, so endless games of Find the Cats or Human. There was even a massive reception hall, which baffled Mr Brammers: 'Why is this room tiled?' 'It's a reception.' 'What do you do in a reception?' 'It, er, receives!' Now that I think on it, they are not an Australian 'thing'. But ample room for three or four bikes on top of everything else!

The one downside: transport. The nearest train station is a 17-minute walk, with the nearest shops a minute beforehand. I know this sounds like nothing to most people, but we don't have a car, and on days when my foot is bad, anything over 10 minutes at a time can be a bit of a struggle. Normally I would just ride, but it is on a very busy street, without straightforward alternatives.

I'm still on the fence about that one, though Mr Brammers has it as a no. But there were several couples with young children there who would adore growing up in such a crazy, wonderful home. If we decide against it, I hope it goes to one of them! Especially to the nice ones who clued us in to the presence of the Light Rail nearby.

Mr Brammers later took said Light Rail out to look at the outside of another house near that one. 'Let me know how it goes,' I said. 'Maybe it will mean the crazy house is possible?' He texted me shortly after. The tram he was on had broken down. Oops.

Today's third option was clearly designed for Oompa-Loompas, as the stairs were too small for even my feet. Easy no.

I have found the perfect place in theory, but it is yet to be shown and we have no details for its opening days. I am, therefore, acting as though there is no hope of us getting it. Obviously, I am still hoping like wild!

And now, off to pack a few more boxes. Oh my fascinating life!! (I am so sorry! I promise to write something interesting as soon as things are more sorted!)
(Deleted comment)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 5th, 2014 09:01 am (UTC)
He was such a friendly and sweet dog, I feel he would do well with the cats! But his humans loved him very deeply.

It IS a Pippi Longstocking house. And all the neighbours are old people, which I don't mind: I could walk their dogs! But I am not sure if I could talk Mr Brammers round. Maybe see about heading out there again tomorrow with bikes …
Sin: ahem - stitch wants to say somethingsinden on July 5th, 2014 09:42 am (UTC)
Think we may have checked out some of those houses.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 6th, 2014 06:57 am (UTC)
What is it with Oompa-Loompa houses in this city?

I am unreasonably charmed by the stained glass in the Edwardian, though. It's down near Yeo Park, which has as its benefits only three things: the ability to create a whole new woodland garden in the wide patch of dying grass at the front; Yeo Park itself; and not far from the two of you.

But do I want to be staggering home for that long in the middle of the night when I finish work late?
Pureblood Princessraitala on July 6th, 2014 06:43 am (UTC)
Good luck! Are things starting to get a bit tight, time-wise? Can you put things in storage while you look for the right place?
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 6th, 2014 06:55 am (UTC)
We have until September 22, so there is no rush, but at the same time I am desperate to think about things that are not moving, so the sooner the better, I say!

Is it mad that I want to move to the mad Edwardian house? I suppose I'd regret it next summer, the garden is so shady that I don't know how I would grow tomatoes and basil, which would thwart all cooking plans ;-)

Pureblood Princessraitala on July 6th, 2014 06:58 am (UTC)
You know me, the Edwardian house sounds gorgeous. Can you not just cut something down in the garden for a veg patch? And a mobility scooter for the long walk ;)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 6th, 2014 07:05 am (UTC)
I am giving you such a glare.

Though a realistic option is just to sell a couple of our current bikes and invest in folding bikes, which are much easier to get onto the train and which are slower, so riding them on the footpath is not such an issue. Alas, the road outside is scary busy and it's not on a sensible grid system that allows you to just find an easy back street.

Too many big trees on the north side of the garden (which equates to being on the south side of the garden in a British garden blocking out a lot of light year-round. I might be able to get in a few cherry tomatoes in hanging baskets, though … But Mr Brammers is all 'Oh, it is too hard. Sigh!' Giant sluggy man, I'm the limpy one!
Pureblood Princessraitala on July 6th, 2014 07:30 am (UTC)
Its gorgeous, but hopefully you'll find a place just as nice that suits you both better.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 6th, 2014 07:35 am (UTC)
There is another, similar place we are looking at in the next week or two. Alas, it has been renovated more over the years so a lot of the internal features have been stripped out, but it does have the space, airiness and decent land size of this one, so fingers crossed! And it is ten-twenty minutes closer to work and dropping into Erskineville cafes when we want to ;-)
montjoye on July 6th, 2014 10:51 am (UTC)
very best wishes for finding a good place
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 6th, 2014 11:01 am (UTC)
Thanks, dear. We have our eyes on a place that will work for both of us: room for a guest, space for sewing, weaving and millinery, room for carpentry, lawn for croquet, a bath and a decent kitchen. It just needs a showing date to go up and for the agents to choose us!
quatrefoilquatrefoil on July 7th, 2014 08:45 pm (UTC)
This might be out of line or a long shot, but if you're willing to move out one suburb, a certain unruly person might be ready to rent his house if he hasn't sold it. Not sure if that would fit either of your needs, but thought it was worth mentioning.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on July 7th, 2014 11:15 pm (UTC)
Hmmm, could be awkward … And it's probably more to his advantage to sell right now. But if you know he is looking for tenants, do let us know and we'll see if it might work for both parties.
quatrefoilquatrefoil on July 8th, 2014 09:41 pm (UTC)
His first preference was to sell, but I think he had a date in mind by which if he didn't, he was going to rent it out again. I'm in the UK at the moment, and don't have an email address. I think it would probably come under the heading of no harm in asking.