The acceptable face of gentrification?

Done so far:

  • Curtains, rods, holdbacks fitted in living room.
  • Books unpacked onto bookshelves in office.
  • Partial repair to drywall around coax socket in living room, to be completed during the week.
  • Two sets of vertical blinds fitted in office.

Today we had a guy spec out a home security system. We’re in what they call a ‘transitional’ neighborhood–while it’s all families immediately around us, a block away is one of Austin’s housing projects, and the kids get the bus from the stop at the end of the street. While I don’t want to be a yuppie prick, I’m conscious of the fact that I’m setting up an office full of tempting computer equipment. So, sensors on both of those windows… But I promise not to drive the BMW to Starbucks.

We’ve got quite a lot of stuff to get rid of, annoyingly enough. A microwave (the kitchen came with one built in above the oven), a cafe-style table with two stools, some folding chairs, a rug, that sort of thing. I’m also going to try and simplify a bit, get rid of the rather excessive number of devices for playing shiny silver discs, and get a single universal player.

The train is audible in the evenings; you don’t hear the train itself, but you can hear the horn. Then again, you can hear train horns in most parts of central Austin, and I’d rather have occasional trains in the evening than a constant rumble of traffic. The neighborhood dogs are louder.

Another noise nuisance is the peacocks. I kid you not, a restaurant a block or two away keeps peacocks, and apparently allows them to wander the street. If you’ve never heard a peacock crowing in the morning, it sounds a bit like a distressed kitten with a PA system. Once I dig out the MiniDisc recorder I may make some recordings.

We tried our new oven tonight. I had no idea that food cooked in an expensive oven might actually taste better than food cooked in an old cheap oven–but it does. It was amazing.