Friday, August 17, 2007

Foot in Mouth

I read my horoscope far too late today. If only I had read it this morning, and paid attention, I wouldn't have reacted as I did to the woman who was looking at our flat, possibly to buy it. My horoscope said "Be diplomatic instead of blunt", and I was blunt, to say the least. Daughter said I was being defensive, probably right. Anyway, I only wish..

Selling this flat, which actually belongs to my son, has been a bit of a nightmare, when we all thought it would be easy. We 'refurbished' it to within an inch of its life and put it on the market too late in the autumn last year. Took it off again for Christmas and New Year, and then put it back in February. It finally sold in June, to a very nice lady who has now lost her buyer, so we are victims of a broken chain. This is my first experience of chains, and in particular broken ones. In the past I have bought and sold houses with dashing confidence and amazing speed. This time it's different, and I can't say I'm enjoying it at all. Poor Son is at the sharp end in London, watching prices go up (still) and unable to do anything about it. Here, the market seems to be at a standstill. So I should have been on the ball today, with this new possible buyer, instead of my old, blunt self. Talk about speak first and think later.

My German lecture this morning was about housing in Munich. Apparently there are very few flats or houses for sale there, and you have to be a millionaire to buy one. This is OK, however, because there are so many rich people in Munich that they can all afford either to buy somewhere, or to pay the exorbitant rents which are charged. She, of course, lives in a very nice part of Munich (is there any other sort?), and can afford to pay the high rent because she has a good job as a teacher. My German lady is quite astonished that there are so many flats and houses for sale in Brighton, and that they are so cheap!! (Try telling that to the local young people who can't afford to get on the housing ladder.) We then got onto the subject of how young people in Munich can afford these high rents. Of course, many of them can't, but these tend to be the feckless young women who choose to stay at home and look after their children, rather than working their balls off outside the home. It's very unfortunate if they don't have husbands rich enough to keep them. And often, of course, these young women don't look after their children anyway. This is said with a knowing, twisted sneer - and I really want to reach across the table and tweak that smug nose. But of course I don't - and there is no point in arguing, because she has that Margaret Thatcher habit of simply raising her voice and carrying on talking over anything the opposition might have to say. I am so pleased that she is going home to Munich tomorrow. And I am sure that the smug, self-satisfied burgers of Munich will welcome her back with open arms.

Another smile from Terry Wogan's programme this morning - and I really needed it.
Man in Indian restaurant (in Bradford) who feels he would like to identify with the Indian waiter says, conversationally, "I've been to Delhi." The waiter looks nonplussed and replies, in a thick Yorkshire accent, "Delhi?"..."Where's that?"

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