Bromich Road was a large three bedroom house , way too big for the two of us but we loved it , it felt old and lived in . My bedroom was the biggest room , I had a full sized American flag and a vast life sized self portrait on canvas of Jason Pierce and a goldfish on the walls which he had created at Maidstone Art College , I had a stereo to listen to as the warm morning sun streamed in through the windows, it was fairly perfect .
We met the neighbours , on one side The Copeland’s , Mrs Copeland was a very nice lady with a soft Irish accent , she had her eye on our trees loaded with apples , we picked them handed them over and she gave us two big apple pies .
Moving in we had a kind of low key party , the neighbour called the Police ! he was older than us , had two pretty daughters about 13 and 14 , Natty shouted at him ‘Ok we will turn it down .’ and slammed the door in his face . This guy proved to be a major ball ache , a gutless little swine who ran to the council every time he heard the slightest sound of music , it was music that really bugged him , so every time he complained I complained about his complaint .
What we did not know was we had settled in the heart of curtain twitching land , whenever anybody arrived or left the curtains twitched , spying eyes were everywhere , old folks bored out of their minds , infected with a parochial compulsion to observe the slightest of movements , we knew we were fucked .
People came and went , we were young and had lots of friends , people who I knew at various stages in my life , old school friends and the local freak scene , despite the under siege living conditions the days rolled by punctuated by the occasional bout of drug induced madness ,we did ok but eventually our time at the Bromich mansion would come to a sudden and dramatic end.
Mrs Copeland’s oldest son Billy intercepted me as I was leaving the house , ‘All these flash cars coming and going , I know what you are up to .’ he had a point ,Sonic’s Silver rocket , Merv and his Jag , ‘Hey ,so my friends have cool cars so what .’ Billy had been caught sticking his dick through letter boxes at some point in his life . He rambled on , ‘ I was in the Patio Cafe once and I bought an acid tab off a bloke , I took it and nothing happened so I went and got another one , I took it and nothing happened , so I took another one , I woke up in hospital .’ Natty thought this was hilarious when I told him.
I could hear the sound of running water as I put the key in lock , strange I thought , the house was a barn with rudimentary heating , the sub zero temperatures had frozen the pipes , the toilet bowl was a block of ice , I had to walk to my mothers house to use her bathroom , I opened the door and water was flowing down the stairs , I went in the front room , it was raining inside the house !
There had been a sudden rise in temperature and the pipes burst with catastrophic results , fortunately I got the water turned off but the house was wrecked. About six months before the pipes burst a family had begged us to swop houses , they offered us cash but Natty refused to leave , I knocked on their door ‘You know you wanted to swop houses , well….’
That was the end of council house number two , we rolled down the hill and up the other side ,round the corner to our new abode .