Sunday, February 25, 2007

It's a changin'

Last night after dinner at a Balaclava venue which we are rapidly coming to despise, with our brother friends we took a walk along Carlisle Street. The street was littered with outdoor diners and drinkers. We lived nearby for maybe eight years and although there was always life on the streets after dark, it was nothing like it is now.

As we passed each shop, we tried to recall what its purpose was when we left the area about five years ago. It was quite difficult as when a shop changes its purpose, its appearance can alter quite drastically.

I think it was the day after we moved to Balaclava we were in the local Coles supermarket and a very good looking and scantily clad couple were doing their shopping on roller blades. I was impressed. I think I will like living in this interesting area.

We did like living there and it was very interesting.

We were refugees of the Prahran property market. We were looking to live in Prahran, but you just weren't getting much house size for your dollar. And, they wanted $180,000 for an average house. Balaclava was much more reasonable at $160,000. Oh, had we known.

But the rot started with us. To street with one or two cars parked in it, we moved in with our two cars. By the time we left, the street was chockers with cars. What attracted us, also attracted others.

In retrospect, it was a relief to leave behind the new young urban professionals and the 'interesting' people. The 'interesting' people really wore us down after a time. While the local council bangs on about the 'interesting' people being forced out of the area by rising housing prices, there still seems no shortage of them. I am over 'interesting' people.

Now, I am used to seeing well dressed people on our local streets. Weekdays it swarms with office workers and perhaps I am an 'interesting' person, as I stand out in my casual clothes. When out for a weekend stroll, we come across other clearly identifiable local residents and I feel some solidarity and connection with them. Sometimes there may even be a greeting as we pass them by.

One day I saw in our present street, someone who would look quite at home in Balaclava, but wow did he stand out in our street. I nearly went into the police station to notify them of this intruder. Seriously. Short and skinny as a drover's dog, dirty looking long thin blond hair, skin tight jeans with smokes tucked in the back pocket, tattoos and why was he looking down the side of our building? I did note the time and if our building was robbed, he would have been on the police station exterior cctv and I could identify him. I am sure he was a 'known person' anyway.

Nah, interesting types are trouble. Now I'd better email body corp committee members about the cricket game happening on the tennis court last evening. Unluckily for them, the guard came on duty half way through their match and removed them from the court. Much more serious than a ninety year old neighbour getting assaulted by a drug affected whore while on his way to the Balaclava shops.

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