Tuesday we met with Bruce Raymond, our structural engineer, to take a close look at the house and tell us what is required to shore up our foundation. More details will be posted here once we get Bruce's report, but it looks like he didn't tell us anything we weren't expecting. It's nice to hear that from an expert though.
During the inspection of the house, we were reminded again that we still live in a “transitional” neighborhood. We found this tagged to the left side of our house, near the back, far from view of the street:
I called the non-emergency police number in Durham (919-560-4600) and within 5 minutes an officer was there to take my complaint. He explained to me the tag meant, "crypts up, bloods down." I'm really not concerned about this graffiti and the police officer wasn't that concerned either. The gangs in the area have always been here, but have never asserted themselves aggressively. Hopefully this will be the last we see of any graffiti.
Vacant/abandoned homes provide space for criminal activity to take place, and leave a gap where the watchful eyes and ears of a family would be. There are approximately 10 vacant homes within a one block radius of our Mallard Street house, and the Middle House (614 N. Queen) is one of them. In 6 months though, this house as well as a neighbor’s house down the street will be finished and there will be two less vacant buildings turned into homes.