Sunday, October 28th

Was greeted on waking today by sharp, brighter than usual light seeping through the window blinds. The first snow had fallen all day yesterday and despite rising temperatures was still hanging on.

Good timing on the change to winter tyres then!

Strangely Park is beautiful after a decent snowfall, especially when it clings to the trees and there’s a frosty nip in the air as there was last evening. Sadly it is now starting to melt again, slowly but surely the winterscape will be erased and the trees will have nothing to hold up except empty branches. For a while at least.

We often get an early burst of snow although this is unusual as it normally comes in November. We get a few days notice of what is to come then it fades and returns much stronger in either late December or January when winter really kicks in.

Yesterday, as the snow continued to fall and the place got more attractive by the minute I sat on the balcony for a while taking it all in. Suddenly, the trees started moving violently about. We did see deer in the park that morning so the snow was forcing wild animals to move around and perhaps something had found its way through the fence? Sadly no, twas only Mr Misery (downstairs neighbour) out with his mop knocking all the snow off the trees surrounding his terrace, whose tops surround ours.

I have no idea why he needs to do this but then he does inhabit a strange world does Mr Misery. A world where fitness centres get demolished and taken away in trucks because of disputes about sharing electricity bills. The entire world is his enemy, inhabited by uncaring people who don’t appreciate his hard work and who don’t buy his apartment just because he wants to charge a fortune for a winter garden that probably only cost $50 from Castorama ten years ago.

Yes, we did look around his place as one of the options to buy here in Strangely Park. His and the Lakeside one owned by the Asprins (they have a drug store) adjacent to Hemingway’s place were quietly on the market and we’d been tipped off by Palpatine to check them out. Unfortunately the Lakeside one was too small for us. Mr Misery’s was a better size, same size as the one we eventually bought but quite dark because of the ground floor, our overhanging terrace and the trees. An additional consideration was the price. Both the Asprins and Mr Misery were looking for 25% more per square metre than we ended up paying, which multiplied by a lot of square metres is a big sum. On top of this, Mr Misery wanted to charge for his winter garden, a glass and plastic conservatory he’d built as an extension some years ago. Not part of his demise and I’m sure not included in the deeds of the property being that it is built on communal land not owned by him, although what papers he has is anyone’s guess around here. I’m happy for them to enjoy their extension but not to try and sell it as part of the property. I won’t get into the fact that it makes access to  the walls of our property above much more difficult as that will all come out later. Anyway, we didn’t buy his place, we bought the one above and then buggered his electrics and kept him awake one night trying to finish our renovation works before the Christmas holiday. As they say here, life is brutal.

Having said all that, I’m certain they are nice people, Mr and Mrs Misery, its just that something somewhere along the road of life pissed him off. They certainly like their grandchildren and have them round often, as they did yesterday.

Hope they don’t enjoy looking at trees with snow on them.


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