2. We're negotiating with a finance company to have them sort out our mortgage and make our life easier. Their two reps came and talked to us yesterday.
3. Mr Asif (two doors down) invited me in to take a look at the building work he's having done. His house is exactly like ours and it 's odd to be in a space that's so familiar yet- in almost every detail- wrong. He's put a staircase up to the attic (where we just have a trap-door and extending ladder) and is in the process of tacking a utility room and shower room onto the kitchen. Also he's laid a marble floor in the hallway.
Mr Asif was a millworker- and got invalided out with a heart condition. He's about my age I guess. My kids played with his kids back in the day. Now there's a family shop and his sons run it. A classic Asian small business. They put in long hours and seem to be doing very well.
There's lots of building work in progress on this street. I've lived here twenty years and in that time I've seen it go from shabby genteel to seriously depressed (with a hostel for men just out of prison at the end of the block) to aspirational. This used to be an all-white area and now it's an area where upwardly mobile Asian families are looking to buy.