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Final decorations

October 21, 2012

Saturday & Sunday were spent filling all the cracks in the walls and generally repairing previous damage. Very tiring work and made worse by the fact my favourite filling knife snapped off at the handle. It had rusted through and only after about 35 years hard use. Using a larger and less flexible one really made my wrists ache. However, the filling is about finished and we now know the decorator is coming on Thursday to fit the skirting boards. Planning slightly ahead we paid the deposit and tentatively booked the 22nd Oct for the carpet fitting – getting closer.

During the discussions on the latest trenching, I asked Mme J where would be a good place to get some more gravel for the path – it’s sunk quite a bit and is very muddy. She immediately says she’ll take me to the place they get theirs where her daughter works so 10:00 am Monday I buy a 1 cubic metre of gravel which will be delivered 8:30 Tuesday – she also offers to find a labourer to roll the path and lay the gravel. This woman is amazing, in the midst of all this her granddaughter is taken ill and is getting MRI scan, lumbar punctures etc and her daughter is having an operation on Tuesday.

The weather went really pear-shaped, raining like crazy so the whole place is turned into a mud bath, this is going to make the gravel work and the lawn seeding very difficult. We decide to get the big weekly shop done, the rest of the week looks like chaos. The BIGBAG of gravel is delivered Tuesday morning and it is still raining – no chance of any outside work at all. I decide to get on with the electrics in the office and spare bedroom, this involves bashing a hole in the wall to get to the telephone cable and fit a double box for the phone and satellite connection. I also changed the power outlets and light switches. June is helping me with the clean up and if all goes to plan we will be able to get the decorating done by the end of the following week.

Malcolm the gardener was a bit hesitant but the weather improved enough so he came and got on with the raking and seeding – except we ran out of seed, consequently I did a mad dash to the garden centre and just got there before they closed for lunch. Mme J is all apologetic because the guy she found to lay the gravel is sick and can’t now come until Friday. This may be OK as the ground will get a chance to dry out a bit. We finally get to take June for her six months asthma check up – about three months late – but all was good and the doctor was impressed with the improvements “make an appointment for next year!”.

Geoff came on Thursday and worked on the skirting boards but he had to leave early for a medical appointment so he’ll finish on Friday. However, it seems we are short of one length of skirting and there is no local equivalent. I called the company I got it from in England and they agreed to cut a board in half and send it by Royal Mail, hopefully it will arrive before the carpet!

Saturday we went round tidying up, little more filling and sanding then putting undercoat on all the skirting boards and door frames, second coat on Sunday then sat down to watch the GP. I though this was a good time to update the Garmin GPS – the computer has been bugging me for ages – it took 6 hours to complete the download then another hour to actually install it all. Then it didn’t work – no roads on the maps! Quick search of the Garmin forum led to the conclusion that the software needed updating and the maps reloading – another few hours sorted that out.

Next we discover that the carpet company was planning on an installation date of November 20th!!!! After a lengthy discussion we managed to convince them to do it on October 30th, still a week later than planned but just about acceptable. I did wonder when they were going to tell me this, just as well I phoned when I did.

I managed to finish all the undercoat and gloss as well as the doors on Tuesday, then Geoff arrived on Wednesday to start wallpapering and painting. I spray painted the radiators as well, only to discover that the final coat was a can of gloss, not satin – I think I may just live with this. I can’t do a great deal when Geoff is in the work rooms and the weather has put paid to any garden work; its absolutely saturated and I just sink in to the ground. Grass cutting will be an issue should it ever dry out but there’s no sign of that in the forecast. Spoke too soon, I decided to go get a can of satin radiator paint after the Inspector General (June) decided gloss radiators were not acceptable; also she needed some more curtain rods. After lunch I realized it had not rained all morning and the wind was drying the place out – au tracteur mes amis – and so I managed to get the grass cut just before it started raining again.

Geoff said he needed another half day to finish so he came back on Friday. I went down into the garage and discovered another flood of water by the main door! The cause turned out to be the hosepipe which Geoff had used to clean a paint roller and left the main tap on with the hose nozzle on the floor. It only drips a little bit so no big flood but still worrying – I always turn off the main valve, drain the hose and leave the nozzle in the sink. Anyway, the decorations were finished but of course the piece of skirting board hadn’t shown up by the time Geoff left, so we will use a couple of off-cut corners and make a new straight piece when it arrives. We finished off by fitting the switches and sockets, light fittings and hanging curtains – all traces of the previous  decoration upstairs has now gone.

Then tragedy struck, one of our best friends of over 30 years in England passed away, just devastating news especially as were planning to visit them in November.

David & June


2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 21, 2012 14:15

    Very sorry to hear of your long time friend’s death. Very sad.
    You are making progress. Hope your carpet installation date remains. Have fun

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