Another week gone by
The nights are drawing in - marauding groups out at night are messing up again. The latest annoying anti-social behaviour trend is late at night gluing up the shops shutter locks and the main door to adjacent flats. My friend who has the shop across the road called at 7am last Monday in a panic to ask if I could call a locksmith. Somebody had superglued the shutter's electronic lock. Thought he was winding me up at first - he wasn't best please at my laughing.
Obviously it's a disgruntled kid out for some kind of petty revenge. Must have been somebody quite tall because it needs a chair to stand on to reach it. Have a good idea who did it because of the snide comments said later.
Took over 4 hours to break the damn thing. So very annoying. The locksmith from Archway brought down a box contraption which fixed to the wall covers the lock and is padlocked. Cost nearly £300 pound to repair. Noticed several shops on the way to Archway have a similar device fitted. Seems to quite a common phenomena of late. The lock smith must be making some heavy money fitting them all over the area.
The flats between the shops are forever having chewing gum pushed in the locks. One young man who has just moved in to one flat came home from work and found the main door lock stuck - oh boy was he upset. Several of the shops have now some special spray to dissolve it. A quick spray solved the problem but he wasn't best pleased. Why do the kids do it - nothing better to do but wonder up and down making a nuisance of themselves.
Good news from my friend up the road - despite what some people might think I do have some close confidants. She has managed to home swap her two bedroom flat in Camden Road with somebody who has a detached house in Surrey using Gum tree online. She has also managed to find a home for her son's Rottweiler so that's another stress off her head. Will be much further to visit her but at least there's still the phone. She's one of life's fighters - the change is just what she needs and I wish her well.
Comforting news, the property next door that caught fire has been stripped and is under fast-track refurbishment. Got to know the workers pretty well since I had to give them water for their tea before the supply was reconnected. Was invited in to see the progress - an offer I couldn't refuse. All I can say is wow - all mod cons, everything new, cooker, fridge freezer, washing machine and of course a state of the art fire alarm and sprinkling system. First class workmanship maximising every little space. Never seen such a funny shaped bath before - sort of a bath and shower together. All very impressive
Londoners are so desperate for accommodation - Never mind the scaffolding and wet paint. It looks like a war zone outside at the moment. Nevertheless people are clamouring for the flats. The rent can't be cheap after all the work. Last Saturday the top flat was finished. A couple of hours later the first tenants moved in. The same applied today with the second floor. One of the workers was frantically looking for light bulbs at 8pm (he sleeps there during the week as a security measure) and half an hour later the removal van turned up.
Least with people now in situate it has deadened the eerie echoing sound of the whole building.
The void flat above me has had a stream of different trades people coming to inspect and measuring up for a complete refurb. An old building they are checking everything. Will be a nightmare when they strip out all the gummings and take it down the winding stairs past my flat door. It would be easier just to throw it out of the window but in this day and age they will say it is a health and safety issue.
Partners senior manager for Customer Services will be coming to see me next week in my capacity as the residents' chair - will be a good chance for him to see things for himself. So many officials sit in their offices and never get chance see action in practical terms. He says it will give him an opportunity to see my garden as well. More on the progress later.