Housing Exchange


Norman has moved house. From Waterloo, my journey to visit him has changed. Jackie, as always, first drove me to Southampton Parkway. I then took the Jubilee Line to Finchley Road, and the Metropolitan Line to Preston Road.

Preston Road Station

On leaving the underground station it was immediately apparent that this area, between Wembley and Harrow on the Hill, was, with its wide, well kept roads, and 1930s style buildings, a very different part of Greater London than Neasden.

Family at coffee bar

Toddlers, one walkingMuslim women walkingYoung families from different ethnic groupings wandered comfortably about their business in the spring sunshine. One toddler sat at table; another, with reins attached, tottered towards one more on a trike.

Hairdressers, opticians, estate agents, eating places, and coffee houses such as Costa, shared the high street with a large Co-op and a betting shop.

A well-used designated bicycle park on the pavement opposite the station was considered safe enough for one cyclist to have left his helmet slung over his bike.Bicycle park

Michael Kors specsWordPress efficiently weed out a large quantity of spam from comments on this blog. Much of it purports to come from Michael Kors Handbags. I was therefore intrigued to see an optician’s window sporting his specs.

My friend met me at Preston Road where, because his new cooker has not yet been fitted we dined at The Preston, a friendly and pleasant Ember Inns pub, whose mixed grill rivals that of The Plough Inn at Tiptoe. The plum, apple, and blackberry crumble with custard was pretty good too, as was the bottle of minimally marked-up rioja we shared. The double espressos were perfect.Preston Road

Whilst we were eating a call came from our solicitors to say that contracts on our house purchase have at last been exchanged. Readers will know that we have been on tenterhooks for the last eight days during which I haven’t bored you with blow by blow accounts. You may remember that we had originally agreed a completion date of our seller’s choosing and were told last week that had to be changed to the end of the month. Because we had acted upon that date I objected. We have had to accept that the original day has not been restored. But at least the deal is done.

After our meal Norman led me to his new light, airy, and comfortable home. After continuing our conversation for a while, I returned to my current abode the same way I had come.


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