09 March 2012

Childhood Home for Sale


9 March 2012
51 years old
Melbourne
The house I grew up in is about to be sold. As I filled in the forms of sale for my parents, I began thinking about all of the houses I have lived in. The first few were in inner city Melbourne, in suburbs filled with new migrants. Mum and Dad were renting in Richmond when they brought me home from hospital. Funnily enough, after years of living in more middle class suburbs further from the centre of town, Craig and I have been thinking of moving back ‘in’. But the old suburbs are not what they used to be, they are gentrified, with a pub or cafĂ© on every corner, which is why we, now also gentrified and middle class, want to live there.
I began thinking about all the homes and places I have lived in:
Thornbury in the 60s: the first house my parents bought, where I grew up. After years of being tenanted, the house looks worn and tired. It wasn’t fancy, but looked much nicer when we lived here.
East Bentleigh in the 70s: south of the river and more well-to-do, though far from affluent.
New Cross (London) in the 80s: with Goldsmiths College near by, full of artists and musicians.
Prahran in the 90s: once full of immigrants but with a mix of old and new.
Through to where I am now with a family of my own. The whole thing seemed like a good idea for a piece of art – a photographic exhibition or a book. I mentioned this to my sister two days ago, then yesterday she said her husband read of a Melbourne writer and actress, doing exactly the same thing: a TV show and book about the houses she has lived in – never mind.

6 comments:

  1. We moved around A LOT when I was young and finally settled on the house I "grew up" in when i was 8 - I think there was a time span of about 18 months that we moved 5 or 6 times (my mom, brother and I actually survived winter in the upper peninsula of Michigan one year. We had snow up to the second story windows!!)! I work a couple blocks away from where I grew up, so I pass it all the time...its just not the same. So many of the houses in the neighborhood have been yuppified. Sad to me.

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    1. That's A LOT of snow! Hard for me to imagine.

      Yes it's never the same and I agree there's something sad about yuppified neighbourhoods, you wonder where the 'real' people are.

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    2. I am so thankful we didn't stay up there! My parents were thinking about buying a business and moving there. We stayed about three months. I was about 4 at the time and I remember getting freaked out because we were there for Easter and I could imagine the Easter Bunny standing on a snow bank looking through my window at me!!

      There is a lot of yuppieness in the area I live and work in...we are actually thinking about moving up north (but not as far north as I was as a child) to get away from it all!

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  2. It's still a good idea Hariklia. Maybe something you think about and develop into something else, from the original idea.

    The "real" people are moving to the country, or a lot further out.

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  3. I really like the fact that it's a brick home. I hope that Big Bad Wolf proof was listed as a point of sale.

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  4. I like that! Big Bad Wolf proof. Ha!

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