Iceberg Dead Ahead

Iceberg Dead Ahead

Do you sometimes think about what’s coming. Perhaps with a feeling of excitement, slightly overlaid with dread, while in the back of your mind, you’re thinking there’s an iceberg dead ahead.

Of course, by the time your realise you’re heading towards an iceberg, it’s generally too late to change course to avoid it.

The reason I’m talking about icebergs, is now that we’ve finished the granny flat, we’re starting to look at the shit box we live in and are finding it less than satisfactory.

There’s the contrast of the new over there, and the not new in here. The house feels drab and unloved by comparison.

Katy, who lives in a perpetual state of renovation, renewal, and redecoration, commented my house is looking quite dated…


Of course the house is looking dated given we haven’t done anything major since we moved in twenty-odd years ago (aside from the bathroom). But… While my memory has smoothed over the raw edges of the construction trauma, I know, with a cold, clinial and cynical eye, I’m heading towards that iceberg.

At least my house is not as dated as the in-laws’s place, which looks exactly the same as it did in 2015. And 2018. And the time before that. Right back to the early 90s when I met them for the first time.

Mind you, we’ve lived here long enough to know for certain what annoys us the most. The kitchen layout, the lack of light at the back of the house, lack of storage, and the small detail that my library is a room sized alcove in the hallway.

Not to mention streamlining the accomodations might help with the post-stroke need not to be distracted and overwhelmed by my house.

So, I’m thinking it might be nice to fix all that. Despite knowing the chances are there will be just as many things “wrong” when we’re done.

And partly because I’d prefer to live in the house than clean it.


We’ve been visiting kitchen showrooms recently, just trying to get our heads around what’s out there, and how much they cost.

“What sort of price are we looking at?” DB casually asks.

The Sales Consultant lists out the components on her fingers.

“How much?” Alexandria parrots her now deceased favourite aunt, fully aware of the irony. Her aunt’s friend, “Ten pee Tess,” (so called because she didn’t like to pay more than ten pence for anything) would be spinning in her grave – it’s a crap tonne of ten pees.

And that’s just for the cabinetry and benchtops. The floors, appliances and tapware are all extra!

DB clutches his chest and I’m afraid he’s going to have a heart attack and expire right there in the kitchen showroom…

A scene we’ve repeated almost everyplace we’ve been. Which coincidentally makes me wonder whether the showrooms have the ambulance service on speed dial.

Though to be honest, we see far more young couples in those places than older ones. (I pity the people who end up buying the in-law’s place).

And I wonder whether the icebergs they see are bigger or smaller than the ones I see.

I suppose when we’re young, we think we’re superhuman, so they probably look at them more like iceblocks in their evening cocktails.

It’s not until we grow older, we start seeing the bird nests on the surface, the fishes hiding in the iceholes under the water line, and the remains of previous ships on the bottom.

We’ll slowly and gently ease ourselves into the water, swim gamely out into the current, and try to avoid the icebergs as best we can. Come back in December and see how we did.

Photo of brown wooden sail ship sailing at sea near iceberg by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

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