Monday, 28 January 2013

Living in between cardboard boxes

I'd like to say this is a 'before' shot, but it feels like it might be a 'during' and 'after' shot too. 

You never see Stevie's face any longer. If it's not at work, it's at the top of a ladder.

But here's mine. 
I feel like this move back into our old house is never ending. I've only just finished collecting stray leftover items from the 'holiday home' (as a friend named it, whose parents-in-law have spent longer on holiday in Australia than we spent in that house), and today (I'm hoping) I made my final visit to read the meters before we hand the keys back. I will be glad to see the back of that place.

Back in Derby we are floor to (nearly) ceiling in boxes, and progress in unpacking has been painfully slow. Stevie had managed to paint the kids bedrooms before we moved in, but hadn't got on to any of the downstairs rooms. The plan was to put everything in the living room while he pained the dining room, but we filled the living room in no time at all and the dining room has ended up full of furniture which Stevie has had to shuffle around in order to get the walls painted.

It's good to be back in our old house. It feels better. I feel more relaxed. I think it's less stressful knowing that a least if stuff goes wrong then that's our problem and we don't have a landlord to have to negotiate with or to deny there is a problem or whatever. Admittedly there is a lot of stuff wrong in the house at the moment, but at least I know that we can fix it and it'll all be nice again. Even if we are still living in amongst the boxes.

I had a plumber out to price up the jobs that need doing in the bathroom this morning. Multiple leaks under the sink, the freestanding taps behind the bath seem to have been rocked back and forward until they have come loose and now lean at an angle that allows water down the back and through a hole into the kitchen ceiling, and the shower has a leak that drips badly through the ceiling but handily waters an orchid in drips that sits underneath it.

The kitchen ceiling is in such a mess that Stevie reckons it's just as well we moved back in when we did as the ceiling is about to cave in. Luckily we have a friend who is a plasterer who is going to re-plaster the kitchen and the hallway and the dining room.

We keep coming across little problems here and there the more we start to live in the house. We seem to have been able to fix the oven door that was hanging off ourselves, but then when I went to use it I discovered the grill pan and insert were missing. I found the grill pan yesterday rusting in the garden and covered in mud, but the insert is still hiding.

I have been complaining too that I can smell urine every time I walk into the dining room. Nobody else seems able to smell it. But it has been driving me crazy. Sometimes I don't smell it, and other times it seems really pungent and disgusting. But still Stevie and the kids can't smell it. I even smelt myself! Today I finally located it. Turns out one of our tenants has peed behind the dining room door. I have no idea why as there is a toilet about a metre away across the hallway, but there's just another reason I'm not sure I can be bothered being a landlord again.

So there we are. A boring little update featuring packing, plumbing, plastering, painting, and ...peeing.


  1. Someone peed in the dining room? The positively awful. I don't know what possesses some people.

    1. Yup. I was talking to an inventory agent today and he said he comes across MUCH worse nearly every week. He says that it doesn't matter how much you are renting your property for, or whether you think you have got a good tenant because they seem to have a respectable occupation, some people just don't care - especially of their deposit is being paid by their company. But I need to stop sighing and saying things about "the state of modern society", and the like. It's making me feel extraordinarily middle aged!

  2. Your tenant sounds like a dick. Maybe you need to find some big scary Russians... I MISS YOU! When you come back to Berlin you can just get a nice old lady to move in. Preferably one who doesn't pee behind the dining room door.

    1. from what I've heard, I don't think we've had it so bad. But I do wish we hadn't rushed to get him out and settled so easily cause really we should have kept his whole deposit. I really hope we don't end up renting out this place again, and I've gone right off the idea we had to buy property in Scotland to rent out. Ah well...Anyway, i miss you too xxx

  3. You have a whole lot of boxes out there. I think you can get rid of them to free up space. There are companies and individuals out there who are willing to buy cheap cardboard boxes that are used.

    1. Thanks for that information. We have managed (at last) to free ourselves from the boxes!


You're not going to leave without saying something, are you?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...