“It’s a fine line between pleasure and pain“… lyrics matchlessly sung by Chrissie Amphlett of the Divinyls, run through my head; soundtrack to the dwindling days of our city life as I conduct a mental retrospective; some of the hits and misses curiously similar. Then I’ll say farewell in my usual style… humming Don Henley’s Boys of Summer “Don’t look back. You can never look back.”
In no particular order…
Customs House Library… the building is a landmark but the interior holds the real treasure: books and more books.
Neighbourhood cats with whom we’re on a first name basis… Davros, Ruby, Frank, Zac, George Junior, Ted… and freely share therapeutic pats and fur.
Local markets… bringing real food from the country to my city doorstep, and nice people too.
The dishwasher… I love its wooshy lullaby sound as cleans the dishes while I sleep.
Air-conditioning in February heat and humidity.
Public transport… inexpensive and convenient.
Paid employment… the comfort of a monthly bank deposit.
Gratis internet, phone and postage courtesy of aforementioned paid employment.
Sense of walking among living history of old buildings, laneways, streets and gardens.
Its intangible and random gifts… kindnesses, street art, buskers, footpath recycling…
Ten minute cab ride to airport.
Walking distance to lots of interesting and useful stuff.
Sitting at footpath tables outside cafés & pubs people watching.
The denizens, all the permutations thereof.
Soy chai lattes at Tramezzini in the AMP Building.
Air pollution, grime & noise.
Air-conditioning except in February heat and humidity.
Paid employment… working 5 days, 9 to 5.
Car parking congestion.
Living in a shoebox apartment in a street of shoebox apartment complexes.
Apartment complex strata rules…no smoking, no parking, no balcony railing plant pots, no…
Public transport… unreliable and crowded.
Workplace bathrooms… oh, the horror stories I could tell you.
Workplace kitchens… patronised by apparently normal co-workers with annoying at best unsavoury at worst habits, and refrigerators harbouring food turned science experiments.
Riding in lifts (elevators)… that might get stuck between floors but people risk limbs to enter or leap into like lemmings* and crowd like sardines… Why? Because another might be as long as a whole minute away.
The vagaries of home delivery pizza… hot & crisp, late & soggy, great, not-too-bad, inedible, how much did we pay for that?
Our favourite local haunts that have become too busy/popular/hipster.
Henry Ford “as long as it’s black” corporate attire… I’m keeping a couple of ensembles in case I need to attend a funeral… says it all really.
[*leaping lemmings – popular misconception but the metaphor endures.]