On November 12 the estate agent confirms that his clients are still interested. There may be a pre-Christmas closing date. An old friend of mine from college is doing our conveyancing. We sign documents with her on November 23. I have no idea what is needed. I am in a position to definitively confirm that any slight acquaintance with conveyancing I may have had 20 years ago is utterly gone.
That very evening I have the following conversation with Michael:
Michael: Daniel is always throwing his socks down on me from his bunk.
Me: Oh dear, would you like to have your own bedroom where Daniel couldn’t throw socks on you?
Michael [mournfully]: Yes. [Short pause]. But that does not mean I will ever move house, so don’t even think about it.
I gaze lovingly at photos of the house on my phone. Mr. Waffle points out that it won’t be half as nice when we move in as it will only have our beaten up IKEA furniture. I say this to a friend of my mother’s who says, “Nonsense, your mother will be so delighted that one of her children finally has a house with room for some of her furniture that she will give you lots.” I sincerely hope this is true.
In advance of closing, we go to the house with our architect. The estate agent, annoying to the last, meets us there with the wrong set of keys. When the architect gets in he is very positive. Is it wrong to feel optimistic?
That evening there is a knock on the door. Mr. Waffle answers it. “Do you know who that was?” he asks. “It was the vendor who grew up in the house – apparently our post has started arriving there [Ulster Bank being perhaps a little over prompt]. He said that they had been very happy there and he hoped that we would be too. We start to hear things about the vendors [the children of the deceased]. He is a magician. When she was young, she was so pretty that she would stop traffic on the road. She was the envy of the local girls.
Finally, finally we close on Tuesday, December 18. With a certain inevitability, our title deeds are briefly mislaid by the courier. Never mind. It’s ours. We’ll spend next Christmas in our new house.