Thursday, September 26, 2013

Wot Pisses me Orf!! Or, my Friday Grump

Wot pisses me orf about Melbourne lately - or maybe more about Mentone is the high density living in our once backwater peaceful little village atmosphere of Mentone. We moved here 30 odd years ago and it was full of old folk that were welcoming and friendly. They have passed away and now we, yes that's Sue and I have become those old folk in the street.

Once we would meet people in our street and chat, we'd close off the street for the Xmas street party. It hasn't happened for years. In fact,you hardly get a wave from some neighbours. Fortunately we do have some close neighbours still and that's really nice and reassuring that that village feel is not totally lost.
But as the years go by and us older residents move on, I'm sure what we have enjoyed with our neighbours will be lost.
This is what I see from our backyard over our garage - what are they building over there?

Many multi-level apartments are being built in Mentone. The old buildings are being replaced to house those Double Income No Kids (DINKs) professional couples. I'm sounding like a grumpy old man - well I'm getting to that stage. I hate the multi-rise buildings in our area, I don't like the fact that the new neighbours don't have the time to say hello when they walk by while I'm in the front garden.

Cranes blot our skyline to build more human filing cabinets and we are 20 kms from the Melbourne CBD.
It reminds me of the Tom Waits song - "I wonder what he's building in there".


  1. I think it might piss me off too! In the UK we live in a small village. When the kids were small we were at its younger heart? We joined in everything? we made good friends and got to know the older residents. We've now been here over 30 years, know fewer people and spend most holidays away in France. Our nest is empty and we are rattling around in a home that is far too big for us. I think the time might have come for us to move on... But to where?

    1. Gaynor - We sound like we are in the sameposition. We also had all that nice stuff happening in the early years. Only last night when I arrived home from work, the neighbour only 3 doors up walked by without a hello or a simple smile. We've given up on him.

  2. It sounds like many larger places to me. Thank goodness we are in a hamlet in France where our neighbours are all friends and there is always a hello or an aperitif waiting around the corner. Take care you two. D & N

    1. Do you know Diane that Melbourne is up there, voted as one of the most livable cities. Trouble is that its getting bigger and bigger. We have growth of population but intrastructure is not keeping up.

  3. Lots of little things telling you it's time to move, do you think?

    1. Vera,
      We are looking for somewhere more regional while we are sprucing up the house. I think you might just be right in your assumption.

  4. Maybe it's time to start investigating the alternatives. You don't have to move immediately, but get out and look around. Maybe you'll find a neighbourhood where people come out to say, "Hullo, are you thinking of buying this house? It's a great house, and a great area." Maybe. But you never know until you look.

    1. Kay - you and Vera have hit the nail on the head. It's on the agenda within the next 3 years.

  5. Hugs mate. I felt miserable because you are right.

    You have two separate complaints.
    1. Many multi-level apartments are being built in Mentone.
    You must fight and fight and fight in the local council to get that stopped. Get councillors on side. Get local people to sign petititions. Write letters to the local newspaper.

    2. The sense of community is disappearing.
    Once every two months, have a backyard party to welcome the neighbours. Let each family take turns in hosting the party. Get each family to bring a plate and a bottle.

  6. Hi Hels,
    Wish I had the energy for No1 - these days you get a decision and VCAT over-ride it.
    No2. We do actually have some nice immediate neighbours that we enjoy a chat with. They are the ones that have been in the street for some time.
    Enjoy your posts even though I might comment. Always find them informative.

  7. It would depress me too to see the cranes out of a window.
    Where we lived in Suffolk [admittedly only for 5 yrs] we had a couple of lovely neighbours who made us welcome the rest--well we might as well have been invisible!
    Different here in Charnizay :-) even though we live outside the village proper.
    As Vera's said -- sounds like time for pastures new.


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