The house I live in is about 80 years old, as are most of the houses in the street. The gardens are so well established that even in the recent drought our street was green and leafy.
About 3 years ago, some of the people in the street applied for permission to build a block of flats, and there were some rumblings about the way the neighbourhood would soon be nothing but blocks of flats. But while rumblings and comments came and went, nothing actually changed.
Then a couple of days ago a fence went up in front of four of the houses, some of the front leadlights and old doors have been removed and the vista of the street changed.
Now my next door neighbour tells me that the developers plan to knock all four houses down in the next two weeks. Apparently the council approval to build is about to run out and they need to know the houses down or re-apply through the whole process.
After 80 years the street has suddently and irrevovably change. In two weeks it will look differnt again and soon after that it will be different yet again, but it will never go back to the slowly evolving vista of the previous decades. Its amazing how slowly things have unfolded, and how suddenly they will move from here.
You could have driven by my house every year for the last decade and the only changes you would notice are a couple of cars gone or newly arrived and slightly bigger trees. Now google maps street view (which rolled out last month) is already out of date.
I guess Ishould be paying attention to whatever rumblings of change are around us at the moment – because even if the change is long-predicted, it always seems to arrive and happen so suddenly.