Being a local

I was asked to write about home a couple of times last year (see previous blogs) and now find myself starting a new year in a new home, albeit less than a mile from the last one. So I am:

All unpacked; books on shelves; all the un-necessaries safely packed off to the tip; that which I couldn’t bear to get rid of, carefully boxed, labelled and lofted; working from a tidy desk with everything easily to hand?


Surrounded by boxes; Mac propped on the end of a table; trying to hit numerous vital deadlines; having a bookcase noisily and dustily built around me; ignoring the other rooms full of boxes containing the things I need to meet said deadlines?

I think you probably know the answer.

I’ll spare you’re the detail, as I’m sure it’s all too familiar for most of you. But nesting has begun and it’s been interesting to reflect on the process of settling in to a new area. It’s a not a new area to me, as its on my morning walk route and next to Mousehold Heath, where you can at least dodge the dog shit in pleasant surroundings and climb to a view of the whole city, with your back to the prison; which must be a metaphor for something.

We still have the same friends, nearly all writers, and still go to the same pubs (Take 5 and The Bicycle Shop last night, Bicycle Shop again tonight). But I did I feel some kind of primeval urge to try and find some kind of ‘local’ sense of home too. A number of said writers live within a stone’s throw and Molly and Joe are coming for brunch tomorrow, before we head off to another party in Cambridge. What a life we lead! and it’s quite hard to escape (even if we wanted to) writers in Norwich. But we like writers and realise we’re very lucky to live in a place where being a writer can be a very sociable thing. I seem to have wandered off the point of being a local, but I shall return to it in future posts on Cafes, Corner Shops, Pubs and Fish and Chip Shops and becoming a local.

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