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Published: October 11th 2014
Sydney, part crumbling emphaseamic uncle, part flashy grumpy teenage daughter, if Sydney were a dish it would have to be something contradictory like chocolate chicken....
We're in a little terrace guest house in Golden Grove, somewhere between King Street Newtown and the railway.
I spent 8 years in this area in the '80s and it feels a lot like home. The old street names, jacarandas, sweet scent of jasmine and marea in flower, the Uni, pubs and other haunts....
South Sydney 'Rabbitoes' heartland, but working class fans of the NRL premiers are a bit thin on the ground, as this is frontline in the war over urban gentrification - 'renewal' to the advocates, 'yuppyisation' to its opponents. Whatever your view it's a bizarre world when crappy rundown little terraces now fetch $1.5m, and that's if you can beat the other buyers.
Locals are either renovating or revolting. Saturday morning and the hammering is in full voice, while on the corner there's a petition imploring social disobedience - squat, occupy, colletivise, know your neighbours, buy local, make the yuppies feel unwelcome.... a warm and sunny morning and it's a jungle out there.
I'd put my money on the developers.... they've got the cash and the hammers.
The upside, there's either an art gallery or cafe on every corner; the down side, the inner west seems to have lost its soul.
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