Sunday, 28 February 2010

A triangle of terraces

A significant part of Old Trafford comprises a mix of back to back terraced houses with tiny back yards and rather unpleasant alleys (that would be ginnels in Manchester parlance), or high rise tower blocks. Towards the end of our years there, an urban redevelopment scheme worked its way through our big block of terraced streets; refurbishing houses and street furniture. The 'triangle' looks a lot smarter now than it did then!

In an environment like that, it is important to appreciate the little things. The wall of the house opposite the end of our street was covered with Virginia creeper which blazed fiery red in the autumn, while the house around the corner had a small front garden with a bright yellow laburnum. In my own back yard, I had a tiny patch of garden with a disproportionately big laveteria, sporting large pink flowers. On one occasion, it was even visited by a flock of blue tits who came to feast on the aphids! What a good reason not to spray!

And, in the warmer weather, people would sit on their front door steps and chat; kids would play in the street and, from time to time, the guy in the house near the end would entertain us all, whether we liked it or not, by playing his music full blast with all of the windows wide open.

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