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Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Scene from Behind Our House

I was awoken early this morning to the sound of a large truck and voices over the radio and when I peeked outside I could see flashing lights. I figured it was another oldie that had passed on from the Ukrainian Home just on the next block from us. When I went to the bathroom, however, I could hear the truck much louder at the back of the house so I went downstairs to investigate through the back window. This is what I saw:

That was around 5:30am. By 7:30 it looked like this:

At 8:30 they were still hosing it. This house has probably been there since the early 1900s and now it has been destroyed by drug addicts. It has been a continual problem in our neighborhood. It is the only house on the little block that it stands on. To the right of it is the Ukrainian Cultural Centre and to the left of it is the apartment building, so the fact that it is somewhat sheltered has not escaped the notice of those seeking out the seedier side of Vancouver. We had just noticed yesterday that new dealers had moved in and voila! the house is now a rubble heap. It is a deep shame that it had to go and that the landlord has never had the good sense to rent to people who might actually care for it. The neighborhood that we live in (Strathcona) is the oldest one in Vancouver. For those of you unfamiliar with the city, Vancouver was levelled by a fire in the late 1800s. You can read the heartwarming tale here. Our area is part of the rebuild and many of the homes in the neighboring streets are certified as "heritage". But they are dwindling slowly due the lack of interest on the part of the city officials to deal with the constant drug problems we have here. Last year almost did us in with the continual dealing, prostitution and seedy characters roaming around looking into cars, etc. We and our neighbors must have called the police hundreds of times. This is not the first time a crack house has burned down here - below the lattice fence you can see in the second picture is what looks like the back yard to the house next to us. It is actually an empty lot from when the house that stood there burned down about ten years ago from people making drugs there. I'll be interested in hearing the official cause of the fire for the above.

I have been woefully lax in posting and I apologise that this is the first post you have to see. I have been fighting a cold, as have the kids and I have been utterly exhausted. Hayden's night sleep patterns have been all over the map due to teething and the cold. His daytime sleep has improved incredibly thanks to my vigilance. Just the other morning I put him in his crib to have a nap and inwardly groaned because I realized the neighbors had their workmen back and right under his window they were hammering, sawing, banging, crashing and blaring their crappy music on the radio. He slept for two and a half hours.

I have been having a hard time coping with Kes the times she is not in daycare. I find I am just too tired to try and stay one step ahead of her and her behaviour has been atrocious of late. We think it is because she has finally realized that Hayden is not leaving and she is expressing her frustration. She constantly pokes at him, takes things away from him, pushes him over when he is sitting, smacks his belly. She shouts in his face and makes him cry. She recently kicked me when I took something away from her and when I picked her up to put her in time out, she grabbed two handfuls of my flesh - and there ain't that much on my collar bone. She has pinched hubby as well. I am totally drained. The only thing that redeems her some days are what I call her Kestrelisms - goofy things she says to me. An example is the following: "'Member? I used to play basketball when I was a kid", or when she sings songs wrong: "Oh the cat came back the very old day", or when she says "either" every time she means "also" or "as well", eg. "I'm hungry either." All I gotta do is hang on another 19 months until she starts school or she will be the death of me!

I have much catching up to do with Hayden reports. He has started dancing and I will upload a video soon! He is quite gregarious and seeks you out for eye contact so he can smile at you. He is now in his new Mitchell shoes, as of two days ago and it is going very well - they are so easy to put on, are much lighter and more comfortable for him. Here's a photo of him in the old shoes:

Here he is in the new ones:

Notice that the bar does not stick out on either side so that it appears shorter (it also hurts us less!) He's very happy with it as you can see! I'm glad that now we can just relax and "stay the course" and enjoy him to the fullest!

More to come.....stay tuned!

1 comment:

Anne said...

Awful about that house! So sad when things are wrecked by people who are wrecked :(

I'm glad baby boy is getting there :) He is just SO cute-I know I've said it before lol

Happy V-Day!