11/05/10 - i am not living far away from the nextdoor neighbours; as a matter of fact, i live oppressively close. i’ve lived in terraced places all my life, which means i’ve been witness to their presence in different places, and on different occasions. i’ve heard joy, and pain. i’ve heard elation. in time i’ve heard far too much, or else too little.
since walls in terraced houses are communal, and in order to apply for my building permit, i need signatures from both future neighbours, stating their agreement on my intended putting up walls for a new kitchen area. there is something disarming about those first talks. there are already traces of future parlando. there’s interest and disbelief. there are agreements, and there’s a lot of good will.
i am primarily betting on neigbourly love, i have got to. with neighbours one makes do, one leaps into darker folds of society. getting to know thy neighbour well enough to cherish his presence, while not overexposing one’s own privacy, often feels like walking a tightrope.
i already let my future neighbours in on my short term intention of breaking out floors, of rewiring, of knocking down and drilling through, from top to bottom. this is going to be a summer of all that, i said. they smiled. they wished me good luck. they had me walking home whistling (the above song).

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