Quite a few of the houses here in Oxford are semi-detached, including the one we are living in. If that term is unfamiliar, its sort of like a duplex, except that these duplexes are 4 stories tall and 200 years old. Here is a picture of what I mean:
Above is a picture of the back face of the place we are living in. The divide between the two “houses” is right in the middle, so we are in what looks like the left two parts.
Actually here is a closer view of our place:
We live in a “ground floor” flat, which is half basement half first floor. Check out my guided tour if you have any questions. The windows I have highlighted above are the ones looking out the back of the living room in the video. Our landlords live upstairs on the top three floors, and we have not met our neighbors yet. I’ll let you figure out why we have yet to meet them below.
Here is the neighboring house, essentially the same view as for our flat above. I hope you can clearly see all the heavy duty construction and masonry equipment. What does this mean for us? Well aside from not really having neighbors, it means that we get a wake up call from the construction crew just past 7am every morning. The noise level is not like “someone down the street is having their roof re-shingled” loud, its more like “someone is running a jackhammer in the next room” loud. Literally. Not only do we get to hear the guys yell to each other, we hear all the noise that comes with completely gutting a 200 year old house, including breaking apart brick and stone.
On the bright side, its an excuse to get up early and get our day started, and we are secretly hoping they break through one of the walls and we get let out of our lease. It seems that no matter where we end up, we can’t quite get away from home repair. At least in this case we are semi-detached.