I've been here yesterday and today closeted with lawyers and others of a similar bent ( ie accountants) trying to finalise some documents for submission.
Quite apart from lawyers nit-picking ( " It says inter alia don't you think it ought to be inter alios?") it has been perfectly pleasant, apart from still being at it at 2am this morning. It did mean we managed to get it finished around lunchtime today. Now all I have to do is hang around until I can get back to Glasgow.
Anyway, as I always do, I have been chatting to various taxi drivers when there was time, and all of them said house prices were all right. One - who had bought two years ago on a fixed rate - had just got his quote for his new mortgage repayments - it was about £30 more per month than previously. My view would be that this is not the Armaggedon people have been talking about - it's a manageable increase for most people, and, overall, the effect on the economy is not going to be as dire as people have been saying. The reported slowing , or slightly falling, of house prices is entirely to be welcomed and long overdue, but, for the moment at least, it does not look as if it is going to be a rout. I suspect that what one might regard as " the family home" market will be almost unaffected, but all the amateur Rachman's will get their fingers well and truly burned. There are far too many one and two bedroomed flats that have been built, traded and left largely unoccupied. There have been virtually no 3 & 4 bedroomed properties built over the last few years, certainly not enough to satisfy demand.
Oh, and by the way, Rachman was much misunderstood.
The other thing about Birmingham is that it is where I was born. It was at the old maternity hospital in Loveday Street - how appropriate - but even a relatively elderly taxi driver could not remember it. It was pulled down not long after Mother Lear delivered me.
There's a moral somewhere in there.