From the local agents. Who managed the property. The property where our board now hung, in all its glossy glory. The local agents we had rejected –for one NOT FROM THE AREA. in all the excitement of being involved and contributing, we had failed to note the FOR LEASE sign and the fact that the little tailor man WAS NOT THE OWNER of the building. There goes the non-presuming rule. Never presume! We had presumed he was. He was not! He rented the premises from the local agent – the one we had rejected – the one whose office was right next door.
Details of the Carlton apartment, indicating our desire to sell were faxed to approximately 12 real estate agents. A few locals had already shown interest and these early appraisals fell well below our expectations. However, we were ready, had our fingers on the pulse. Research was conducted. We read all the property pages with gusto, attended a few auctions and were confident of a good outcome. After all, this was cosmopolitan Carlton, Little Italy, in the backyard of Lygon Street, with all amenities right at the doorstep. Buyers would be beating a path to our door.
The trades person arrived 2 days after we reported to Council our intentions to remove the small pile of vine cuttings from the laneway. Just as he was leaving with a small trailer load, to take away that dreaded vine,...
Our first Christmas in the house, I wrapped a couple of little puddings in tinsel, quite expensive little puddings and placed them carefully in boxes with coloured ribbons, handwriting “ Merry Christmas “ and their respective names on cards. Mr. G placed them gently in both letterboxes that night. Maybe not so gently he mentioned later. It was a peace offering and I thought it would go a small way to helping. Nothing was ever said about that gesture.
They say laughing is good for your health. When you physically have to stop reading a book in mid-sentence because you simply cannot continue, you try but the laughter emanating from you is so overwhelming, when you are snorting loudly...
It was a mid morning phone call from her niece, which brought the sad news that Gwen had passed away. I couldn’t believe it. Her house empty, locked up, the 100 year old tree in the front yard, dropping its leaves as if recognising the loss.
The next day or two later, I stood at the balcony window, as I had so many times over the years, looking out over the rooftops, Gwen’s rooftop to the little chimney at the back. For some 20 seconds perhaps, I stared in silence and disbelief –