Anybody wanna take me home?

One of the things I planned on doing when I got back from NZ (besides world domination…) was to move into a house in town with a mate. No intention of buying a house – preferring instead that I should hold on to both my kidneys instead of selling one to pay the mortgage.

I enjoyed my year in NZ living by myself in my own space. And I figure, well I’m in Portadown for the forseeable future so why not find somewhere here to live.

Not that I don’t enjoy living with my parents (the rent’s obviously good…), I get on with them very well, I’ve never felt smothered, or impeded or in any way deficient by living with them – though I’m aware that living with your parents at the age of 26 is deemed a cultural faux-pas in some circles.

For some years now I’ve had a certain desire, or perhaps I should say conviction to be living on the Garavghy Rd. Just because there were no other Christians living there, and seeing as I seem in no danger of “going out into all the nations” anytime soon, then maybe down the road a bit might do.

Going to NZ was a lot of things, part of it was running away from that.

I have been a quiet suburban middle-class Prod all my life. The idea of living in any form of urban (not that Portadown ever gets that urban) working class community has some sort of romantic allure – think Pulp’s Common People without the “sleeping with common people like you” bit.

There is a longer explanation but that’s pretentious enough for now.

And so for the past 3 months I’ve read the classified section of the local quality publication – The Portadown Times (the same paper that brought us such page 2 stories as “Missing swan found”) – looking for houses to rent. Largely without success.

Until last week when two turned up at once.

woodsy.jpgMe and Woodster (seen here during his brief spell with the Met) – the only one I could talk into sharing a house with me – spent our evening viewing the two houses.

The first was a newly renovated terrace which fell down on being pricey, having dodgy windows and a peculiar bathroom beside the kitchen thing. Nice but not good enough we thought.

The second was a wee bit more hopeful. An end terrace in a courtyard of relatively recent built houses. Recently occupied by smoking Portugese Moy Park workers (judging by the unopened mail and the smell). Certainly a decent enough wee house Just the landlord who was a bit stand offish. Asking questions like how long we’d known each other and who the girl (a friend who’d tagged along for curisoity’s sake) was, and what we did for a living. He quite clearly didn’t believe I was a doctor, and I hardly blame him, most people don’t. I either look, too young, or too scruffy, or too incompetent, or frequently all three.

As we walked away from the house it dawned on us that his stand-offishness and quite frankly nosy questions were simply explained by the fact he thought we were gay. Northern Ireland is of course a country full of deep seated prejudice and bigotry (myself included) and so a little homophobia is par for the course (again, to my shame – myself included). Of course he would presume two young professionals moving into a house together were gay. I mean Woodsy was even wearing a scarf. What else could we expect, this is Portadown after all.

Young single males are often seen as an odd sort, we’re either of questionable sexual orientation, involved in some form of nefarious criminal activity or drunken violence. Lock up your daughters so to speak. Sigh.

In the end we turned the house down (for various reasons), probably a good thing. It’ll save him the hassle of telling us he’s not a fan of our sort, and me the hassle of explaining.

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2 Responses to “Anybody wanna take me home?”


  1. 1 Skeeno January 24, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    I think you pair would make a lovely couple!!!

  2. 2 Nelly And I January 24, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Aw thanks…


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