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- Woke before 6:30am. .hmmm - looks as though the abcess/swelling on my gum, kinda 'popped' in the night some time! The pain is MUCH less - a trace of blood in my mouth - the 'balloon like' swelling has gone down. Thank goodness!!!. .walked around 7am and then straight back to sit by the phone waiting for the doctors call . . PCd a bit of this . .the doctor called around 8:30am. The blood results were back and all was pretty much ok. My thyroid was 'high normal' so he suggested we'd have to keep an eye on that. He agreed to an increase in the prozac to two per day. He said he'd refer my name to some retired guy or other who has helped long term unemployed people get back into work somehow. Other than that, I think it was pretty much a case of keep taking the tablets, see the counscellor on the 25th, and he'd see me some time.
2 - Up around 7:30am. . . walked . . loaded my ever growing collection of sacks of garden refuse into the back of the car, together with the old damaged PC chair I inherited with the house, ready for a trip to the tip. Touched base briefly with Mum and then left Sally at home and drove to Mums to pick up the old broken vacuum from her garage . . drove to the council tip and was relieved and delighted to find 'almost' no queue, and was pretty soon unloaded and back out . on to the DIY store to spend a small fortune (56.32), stocking up on enough supplies of various stuff (plaster/paint/socket boxes/power & phone-master sockets/light switches/phone cable/etc, etc), to as far as I could envisage, see me through the rest of the box room renovations (plus). Much of the expense was investing in a couple of what I thought were rather neat (but expensive 8.99 each!) flush fitting telephone wall sockets, with built in filters and additional sockets for the ADSL connection. Ideal for the computer room I thought . . stopped off at Sainsburys on the way home for a major shop (88.98). . eventually back home to unload everything, very satisfied with the trip
nervously just turned off the two valves and removed the radiator in the box room to enable me to scrape off the layers of old paint from behind it, fill where necesarry and then get a cover of lining paper and paint back on the wall as quickly as possible. Didn't dare use the heating or hot water while the radiator was off, 'just in case', so the pressure was on to get it all done as quick as possible!
3 - ?-//-?
Put a second coat of emulsion on the wall where the radiator goes and eventually set about reconnecting it. Wouldn't you know it - I couldn't find my jointing compound or PTFE tape in my tool collection. That's the really annoying part of doing this DIY stuff in the new house - all the little necessary things I used to have to immediately to hand, which somehow have been lost or left behind in the move. So, before I could get on and do the work, I had to stop everything, change back out of my overalls and head for a shop, in the hope of finding some PTFE tape at least. . walked with Sally the short distance to the local builders merchant place in the hope that they may have some, and sure enough they did, AND some Boss White jointing compound (4.04). Very cool having such a handy place SO close again. :o) Probably higher prices than elsewhere, but the alternative of having to drive somewhere and get stuck in all the permanent queues, kinda offsets that - and when you are stuck in the middle of something and need something right NOW, you can't beat having it on your doorstep. . straight back and succesfully replaced the radiator. Worrying because I have no real idea how this back boiler/immersion heater/expansion tank hot water/heating system works, but as I re-opened the valves on the radiator there was a comfortingly brief noise of water topping up the expansion tank as the radiator filled and I bled out the air. I'm not sure, but I suspect that being gravity fed like it is, the pressure in this system is way below that of what I've been used to with my pressurised combi in Bristol, so sealing the pipes and such against leaks is a bit less of a battle. So - on one of the sunniest, warmest days of the year so far, I had to have the heating on to make sure everything was working ok! Like a sauna!!
4 - ?-//-?
walked and took a tin of beer to the woods for more sitting amongst the bluebells. I am NOT going to make a habit of this drinking thing, but on an empty stomach, on top of the prozac, it IS a pleasant effect. . . returned and ended up back in the box room, sanding a little and finally putting a layer of undercoat on the window frame and cill. Oh YES. I was definitely right to decide to paint over that dark wood finish. Makes the whole room SO much brighter. .couldn't resist scraping away just a little at a floorboard before calling it quits for the day. Progress is quite likely to slow down now, while I attempt to make critical decisions about the floor and particularly about what I'm going to use to cover the window. The room looks SO neat without curtains and has the window so deeply inset in the wall - I'm sorely tempted to just have some form of blind, inset in the window recess. Maybe one of those soft ones with the thick
vertical louvers that seem to be popular these days, particularly around here. Dunno where you can get them, and I bet they are expensive . . touched base with BB . . TVd and ate a couple of defrosted pasties before getting clean in the shower. I'd misjudged the likely hot water temperature (thought it would still be warm enough from when I ran the heating yesterday) and ended up having an uncomfortably cold, rather brief shower!. . surfed looking at office furniture and PC desks and such. Can't find anything I'd be happy with! :o( . .eventually to bed in the early hours.
5 - Up 'late' around 8am . . walked . . with rain forecast for some time over the next couple of days, I thought I'd better trim the lawns which seem to be visibly growing by the day! Mowed them short and then used the strimmer for the first time, around all the edges and borders, front and back. Worked out quite nicely and really looks rather good all short and neat like that. Pottered around and de-weeded the back garden paths and then swept up all the debris - mostly masses of the now dried brown, cherry blossom petals from the trees . . back to the box room and on my knees for more floorboard scraping until Mum popped in after 1am bearing a newspaper and food gifts . .sat around mostly in the garden, chatting with Mum for ages. Got talking about the mouse nest under the slab I wanted to move, and decided to take the risk of quickly lifting it so Mum could have a look. With enormous relief, it turned out the nest under the slab had been vacated, so I moved the slab and dumped it out of the way up the top of the garden. Amazing little nest it was, all dry grass and leaves and torn up bits of paper, in a good six inch wide and deep hollow carved out of the earth beneath the slab. . Mum finally 'stumbled off' (She's really starting to look old! :o( ) after 3pm! . . . ate Mum donated pork and stuffing slices in bread rolls with crisps. . . napped until around 6:30pm . . walked. . scraped more floorboards. Actually took one (one of the loose ones I've had up to do the wiring, the last one requiring the initial scrape down) out into the garden to do, to spare the neighbours the noise as the evening wore on. All done by 10pm. Yep - I think I AM going to have a go at having that floor as finished bare boards, even though they aren't perfect or completely flat, and I've no intention of hiring sanders to do the job properly. Even pushed my PC chair in there briefly, to try out the castors on the floor. Works. Yeah - I'm really starting to quite like how that room is starting to look. :o) . . touched base with BB. . ate a couple of Mum donated sausage rolls with crisps while TVing, followed by a couple of microwave sticky toffee puddings which Mum has been raving about. They WERE very good, and only took a minute in the microwave, but I bet they're expensive and oh SO small! As Mum suggested, I ate two at once. . TVd until bed around midnight. Only took one prozac tablet today, when I think I should have had two. A conscious decision because I've been feeling a little 'hyper' this last day or so. p
6 - Woke around 5:30am from a vivid, remembered dream! (I was back in my house in Bristol! The old concrete inserts from a couple of old fireplaces were stacked against the outside of the front door on blue metal sack trucks to stop people getting in. I'd come to use the computer which was set up in the living room, despite the house obviously being in the middle of major renovations. As I used the computer I looked up and suddenly realised I could see up to the roof timbers - the upper timber floors had been removed. Both Mum AND Dad were present and I 'warned them not to look up', showing them what was being done! Bizarre!). . . walked early under a thick grey sky . .PCd and surfed looking up how to finish stripped wood floors. As far as I can tell, it's pretty much a choice between a varnish type product or an oil. I'm seriously tempted to try an oil because I think the to and fro of the wheels of a PC chair are liable to too quickly damage a varnished finish, and then I'd have the hell of the whole floor having to be stripped to effect a repair/re-varnish. I presume applying patches of more oil is easier? Not sure. No experience of such things. . surfed briefly looking at vertical blinds. Yep - they ARE expensive, and never having lived with any, I really am not sure if that is what I want against that window . . pretty soon gave up with the PC again and set about washing and scraping down the box room floorboards, now I've finished in removing the top layers of glue and paint and whatever else was all over them. Warm water, detergent and a soft wire brush from my tool collection seemed to have the best effect, but boy was it a slow hard work. . . and five hours later (!!!Really!) I'd finished the first scrub all over. Actually it would appear I got better at it as time went on, so some of the first boards I did will have to be attended to again, but overall it really has come up better than I'd imagined it could. Whatever that dark coloured stain stuff was that covered them, it appears to have been pretty much water soluable and apart from the rough grain and knots is largly gone. Pleased. Tired and aching hands and wrists, and some dirty splatter over the newly painted walls, but overall, very pleased. :o) . . ate large corned beef and salad sandwiches with crisps and a couple of squares of chocolate . . napped . . walked in a bit of drizzle . . tried to TV but something weird is going on with the reception, and I eventually had to give up . . touched base with BB . . ended up on the PC surfing a bit looking for something to watch, and ended up on YouTube for far too long, watching mostly aircraft/helicopter/motorbike crashes!!! Sicko! . ate bowls of corn flakes . . .PCd until bed in the early hours. pps
7 - Up 'late' around 8am . . walked in the blowing drizzle. .damn! That small hole in the earth next to where the mice nest was under the slab, IS in use by something I think. I stuffed some of the nest material into the hole yesterday, gently blocking it up to see, and sure enough it's been moved and the hole opened back up! . . PCd this very briefly . . rigged up the distribution amplifier to see if it would improve the TV reception. It didn't! :o( I've a horrible feeling, I have a problem with the aerial connection/downlead. Major hassle since I have no means of getting up to it to check. :o( . . painted the box room ceiling, dabbed a bit of filler here and there and then spent more hours on my knees scrubbing away at the floorboards again. Boy is this a long job! If I hadn't decided to go this route with attempting a stripped boards floor, I probably would have that room mostly finished and useable by now. Because of all the floor preparations etc, it's liable to be 'weeks' before I can move the PC stuff in there! It's the relationship between the skirting boards and the floor which is delaying things mostly, now. I need to sand down and repaint the skirtings but can't do that until the floor is in pretty good shape because scrubbing and sanding the floor inevitably means knocking the skirting boards - and visa versa of course. Tedious. . stopped work mid afternoon and fried up two sausages, eggs, mushrooms and potatoes for a big feast . . napped for a couple of hours . . . walked . .back on my knees for more scrubbing, with another wire brush because I've worn one out already!! I think I've changed my mind (again!) about the floor and blind. On reflection, I reckon an oiled floor would attract the dirt, and with Sally-dust all over the house all the time, would probably change colour and become ugly really quickly - so, I guess it IS a case of varnish it after all. Also, I think a 'normal' horizontal blind at that window may be best. Because of the height of the bedroom from street level, it would be quite possible to have horizontal slats open to allow sight of the view, but still remain privately totally out of sight from passers by (which I'm afraid is an absolute MUST for me!). Vertical slats wouldn't allow that. . called it quits and touched base with BB after 9pm . .ate corned beef and mayo sandwiches with pickled onions and then a mass of biscuits . . TVd the four available terrestrial channels until bed before midnight. p
8 - Up around 7am . .walked . . PCd this briefly. Dabbled with a bit of the mountain of paperwork I've been neglecting and phoned in an electric reading (they'd vastly over estimated the first bill I recently received) and set up a monthly direct debit for the water and paid the first one of those bills I'd received . .briefly replaced the rotary dimmer main light switch in the living room with a standard switch plate. The last time I was 'in to' dimmer switches like that was in the 1980's! Can't stand them these days! Rather have a choice of lower wattage lights . . The box room renovations progress - all undercoat and baresoon headed back to working in the box room and had a go at sanding down all the skirting boards before vacuuming/wiping/painting an undercoat on them all. Still managed to get some paint on the floorboards despite trying to be SO careful and have newspaper pushed under them all the way round! . spent a remarkably long time messing around with this and that trying to get the floorboards ready for finishing. They ARE all gonna require a bit of sanding down thanks to the effect of the washing/wire brush raising the grain a bit (actually a couple of square feet still need a wash). Recessed all the nails with a punch and lump hammer (poor neighbors!) and then drilled the floorboards I'd raised and countersunk screwed them all back down, so I can easily raise them again whenever I need to modify wiring and such (I still haven't re-routed the phone cable through the outside wall and connected up the phone sockets ring yet). For pretty much the smallest room in the house (too small to even get a photograph!), it sure has taken a lot of time and effort - and plenty more work to do to finish it! Then again, I've probably done more in that room than I'm liable to do on ANY of the others (particularly because I was determined to have smooth walls and not use woodchip in that room):- Cut and raised floorboards / added and wired in three countersunk double power sockets and six other single socket boxes to the walls all around the room / glued and plastered up the 'bowed' and separating stud wall to make it appear smooth / filled and smoothed every wall at the old picture rail height / repositioned the light wall switch and the ceiling pendant / plaster patched the ceiling / stripped the floorboards / filled and sanded every wall / wallpapered / painted everything white - the list goes on!! Sadly I didn't take a 'before' photo of the red carpet tile floor / blue woodchip walls with multiple filled over wall plugs hanging out of cracked plaster and a visible picture rail mark beneath the paper / dark wood window frame / damaged eyesore ceiling and offcentre light and wonkey wall switch, etc etc. Suffice it to say, I think it is a definite improvement, even unfinished. . eventually called it quits mid afternoon and ate corned beef and mayo sandwiches with pickled onions and crisps . . napped . . walked . . TVd . . BB called . . 'browsed' eating bits and pieces of all sorts - banana, sticky toffee puddings, corn flakes, crisps etc etc . . eventually to bed around midnight. ps
9 - Woken (and the neighbors?? !!!) by Sally barking at something out in the back garden at around 3:45am!?? No sign of intruders - some non human animal maybe - looking for mice/peanuts to eat perhaps? . .up around 7am . . walked in the drizzley rain. .PCd a bit of this and browsed through my stack of bills and paperwork making sure nothing requires immediate attention (other than needing to submit my repeat perscription real soon). .left Sally at home and walked to the doctors to hand in the repeat perscription request. .wandered around various local stores trying to get a feel for what I want to buy to make progress with the box room. Horrified to be quoted in the region of 100 just for a small venetian blind - and 'proper' floor varnish type stuff was shockingly expensive too, with a small tin in one store priced at around 40!!!! I had no idea the stuff would be THAT expensive! I'm not sure I can justify that sort of expense and may end up just putting carpet (tiles) back down. :o( . . shopped briefly before returning, feeling headachey . . surfed briefly looking at window blinds and even that reflective stick on window film you can get. . ate three buttered ham rolls with crisps and then a little chocolate. Felt increasingly headachey and yucky and pretty soon had to go lay down . . woken just after 3pm by the phone ringing. I didn't answer it but just know it was YET another of those damned sales calls I keep on getting. Still a really nasty headache. Took two annadins with coffee . .started feeling a little better and with the TV (aerial) fast getting unwatchable on even the four terrestrial channels, ended up on the PC surfing for a bit. Bumped into an outrageous real life bike chase video with a most unexpected twist at the end. Incredible what some people'll do -and film - and upload - and, and ! :o/ . . finally got round to updating addresses and such on some of my neglected PC stuff, and suddenly remembered I have a credit on my PayPal account, following that ridiculous aborted BB laptop motherboard saga last year. I'd kinda forgotten all about that/written it off. Hmmm? Surfed and ended up on eBay ordering a cheap (15.95 inc postage) plastic venetian blind for the box room. That's more like the price I had in mind, just to see if a blind is what I want in there. I can always go for a better quality/more expensive one in the future if it proves to be suitable. Nice one. :o) . . walked . . PCd drinking a bottle of Newcastle brown ale and finally got round to sorting out my broadband e-mail account and checking this and that. It would appear that Virgin HAVE now taken over my phone account (The bill for which I can check on line), so with allegedly free local evening and weekend calls as part of my broadband deal, I thought I'd give it a go and touched base with Mum for no particular reason. .BB called briefly. . ate three buttered ham rolls with crisps, a banana and some chocolate. . TVd/PCd until bed around 1:30am. dp
10 - Up around 7:30am . .walked . . PCd this briefly . . finally took down the net curtain from the box room and removed the bent hooks that were screwed to the frame to hold it. Filled the holes with filler and dabbed a little more here and there on the frame . . .left Sally at home and drove to the DIY store to have a look at floor finishes. Stopped for petrol at Sainsburys on the way (21.3ltrs @ 20). Spent ages wandering slowly around the Focus DIY store looking at this and that before finally reading all the info on a bunch of the tins of floor covering stuff. Eventually bit the bullet and rather arbitrarily settled on a 2.5litre tin of Ronseal Diamond Hard Clear Gloss Floor Varnish (33.99! Ouch!!!!!!) Spent another 16 on a small tin of wood filler, 2m of earth sleeving, a 5 pack of cheap paintbrushes and a white uplighter lampshade. Right - with the blind ordered, that's everything I need to push on and get that room useable. It's just gonna be a slow process doing all the preparation/painting/sanding/painting etc etc. . . PCd just a bit more of this. .popped out briefly with the binoculars and had a peer up at the TV aerial. Hmmm? Seems to have a weird junction box at the base of the mast, with the downlead connected in that!? THAT will be where the cable, blown back and forth on the roof in the wind, has come adrift. I'm gonna have to pay for someone to come fix/replace it! :o( . . . ate three buttered ham rolls with crisps while watching Tony Blair on all the available TV channels making a live speech to his local party officials, finally announcing he is stepping down from office . .sanded down the filler and first coat of primer on the window frame before painting on another . . napped for almost a couple of hours as the rain poured . . PCd this. Received an e-mail saying my venetian blind had been despatched and should be delivered tomorrow. Ain't 'tinternet marvellous. :o) . . .walked in the torrential wind and rain, and got soaked right through my waterproofs! . . Owwwwa - having trouble receiving the last four TV channels now! Reinforces how I don't like this thing whereby we are all being forced to go digital with our TV reception. Good old analogue TV can be picked up pretty much anywhere, albeit perhaps poorly, with a bit of wire hanging out of the back of the set. Digital seems to require a much more elaborate antenna, and is either watchable or simply not, with no in between. That seems like a real negative thing to me. . . back on the PC and dabbled with surfing the BBC site and watching the news clips on there to keep abreast of things, although I have of late been forced to actively avoid that heart rending Madeleine McCann story - the little girl abducted from her holiday bed in Portugal. It's one of those agonising stories that is just too painful. What was the last one that 'got to me' like that? The Ian Huntley / Holly and Jessica was it? What a world! :o( . . PCd this desperately trying to get on top of it enough to upload it for the first time in weeks. In all the years I've been doing this, the last few weeks have been the closest I've come to simply giving it up - and without a word of explanation to anyone. I think on reflection, it was actually a symptom of the prozac somehow. I've had a bit of a bouncy ride on the prozac this time. Had some REALLY tough times. Feel better now, definitely 'not myself' but I guess I'll gladly settle for that. At least I've somehow decorated one of the rooms through the ride!! lol . . ok - enough - missing days, half remembered nonsense, disconnected comments and all, I'm gonna upload this for the first time since oooh when was it? Back on 16th April was it? Blimey! . . ate three buttered ham rolls with crisps, a banana and the last two Mum donated sticky toffee puddings . . TVd the news until bed around 11pm. pp
11 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 6:30am . .walked before the rain returns. Wore my raincoat, still soaking wet from last night, just to dry it out a bit! . . sanded just a bit then painted a top coat of white gloss around the box room window. Should have spent longer sanding - it isn't a good finish. Good enough, but could have been better if I hadn't been in such a rush to get that done before the blind arrives. . put dabs of filler here and there on the skirting boards around the room. .glued and filled a couple of the floorboards. . fried up two sausages, eggs, bread, mushrooms and potatoes for lunch. As I was sat eating at around 1:35pm the courier arrived with my venetian blind. :o) . . napped for maybe only an hour but fitfully and soon back up feeling a bit iffy. Too much paint fumes! . .sanded down the skirting boards and then washed over a couple of the floorboards . . .walked . .unwrapped the venetian blind, checked it'll fit and had a good look at how to fit it . . touched base with BB . . TVd for half an hour, resisting having a go at hanging the blind, because I felt too tired to not maybe make a mess of it. . with my TV reception by now so appaling, I somehow mustered the energy to have a proper look at the surplus/outdated satellite stuff PS donated, and dragged both the dishes back down from where I'd stashed them in the garage and brought them into the living room for experiments. . socketed up a patch lead and then had a go with the newer of the two systems. Nothing! I just couldn't find the satellite signal, no matter how carefully I tried to position the dish, using the neighbours as a guide for the direction. Even had it propped up on the garden bench with the front door open for ages, but to no avail. .had a go with the other system and incredibly somehow bumped into a signal. Yayyy. Temporarily propped the dish in the hallway against the back of the front door and succeeded in seeing what there was to see. Disappointing. One CNN channel, one Eurosport channel and a whole bunch of German channels, although interestingly, two of those channels appeared to be showing porn!!! Oooer! lol Pretty soon got bored with that (usual made for men stuff whereby the editing would have one believe that men do not posses a penis!) and ended up reading through all the manuals before dismantling everything, piling it in heaps all over the living room, and heading for the PC to try and read up and understand what it is I have here. I've never experienced a satellite system before in my life, and haven't a clue what it is all about and what it is capable of giving me, for free. . .a couple of hours of surfing later and I 'think' I may have a basic superficial understanding of things. Wow - with the dodgy TV reception down this way, I wonder if Satellite isn't the way I should be going - and armed with what PS has given me, maybe I have enough to get up and running?!!? All the more tempting since the neighbor's dishes are mounted at ground level, which would make it all easily accessible without ladders. I may be wrong, but as far as I can tell, I have an old analogue Amstrad system that'll pick up Astra's (and maybe some other satellites?) remaining few analogue signals - AND a Panasonic TU-DSB30 Digital satellite receiver with a mini dish for picking up the Sky satellite's stuff (although it is the latter which I couldn't get a signal on when experimenting). Hmmmm? I think I need to figure out some way of making up a temporary mount for the dishes on the front patio outside, so I can do proper tests and attempt to find a signal with that mini dish. I get the impression the dish alignment really is absolutely degree-critical and holding it by hand just isn't gonna work. Also, I wonder if I could swap the LNB from the mini dish and put it on the old larger dish, and get a better/stronger signal? Interesting. VERY interesting. I'm gonna have to play with all that. Another thing from the surfing - satellite systems actually seem to be suprisingly 'relatively' cheap. . ate a banana and bowls of corn flakes before eventually to bed around 2am. p
12 - Up around 7:30am . .walked . .PCd this . .had a go at fitting the venetian blind to the box room window frame. An amazingly perfect fit. With the top two mounts in position, I temporarily put the blind in place and tried it out. Mistake! Pulling the chords to close the blind back up, I succeeded in pulling the whole thing straight out of the mounts, and it crashed out of the window down to the floor!!! Damaged my nice new paintwork on the window frame and actually split the end of the top slat on the blind!!! Idiot! Luckily the damaged slat is pretty invisible, and I carried on and fixed the thing properly in position. I think it looks pretty good, especially considering it was SO cheap. Cool. . touched base briefly with Mum. . walked with Sally round to the local pub car park to see what was on offer at the advertised car boot sale. Two very sad looking people were stood at a two tables offering a couple of portable TVs and some childs junk! That was all! lol . . returned home and decided to have another go experimenting with the Sky satellite dish. Clamped the dish temporarily in my heavy vice and sat it on the top of the steps by the front door and then rigged the portable TV up, sat on the window cill so I could see it from the dish. At length, I managed to find the signal and actually ended up with a pretty good picture. TVd for a bit, seeing what there was to see. Weird thing was, it didn't seem to have all the freeview channels I've become used to - and of particular concern was the fact it didn't have Channel 4 or 5!!!??? Weird. A thing on the screen on those channels gave a phone number to call to 'upgrade' the service to be able to receive them!!!! I thought those were all free?? If it wasn't for pretty much just those two missing 'main' channels which I'm NOT prepared to do without, I'd make do with the satellite system (which DOES have some extra neat looking channels I'm unfamiliar with) , and not have to rush into paying out lots of money for a fix to the rooftop freeview aerial. Hmmm? . . Mum popped in as usual on a Saturday, with the TV paper, some food donations and pork pie treats for Sally . . carried on with the satellite experiments once she'd gone, and actually ended up phoning the onscreen number in an attempt to get to the bottom of why I wasn't getting the full set of free channels. To cut a long and deeply frustrating and infuriating story short, I ended up having to call the Sky helpline on multiple occasions, and on EVERY single occasion was told something different!! . . Mum called in the middle of all this, saying there was an advert in her local shop for a second hand compost bin for 10. I'd let her know that I absolutely HAD to have one at some point. Drowning in my 'Sky' frustration, I said I'd think about it and maybe walk up there and have a look at the advert later . . During one of the Sky calls I was informed that the viewing card in the box was actually registered to the previous owner (PS mother in law as it turns out - which explains why the box was defaulting to ITV West and BBC Bristol etc) ) and I'd have to get their full name and address and phone number before anything could be done. Touched base with PS, explained what was going on and got all the information before calling Sky back again, only to then be told they couldn't do anything anyway because there wasn't a password set up on the account, blah blah blah - round and round in circles, utter obstructive nonsense!!! Arrrggghhhhh!!!!!! Called PS back again and explained, and gave him all the viewing card info so he could phone Sky pretending to be the registered owner. I have no idea why I had such a hard time getting some sense out of the idiots on that helpline, but somehow PS wife got straight to the heart of the matter with them, and soon rang me back explaining that I simply had to register with Sky as the new equipment user, pay a one off 20 fee for the freesat service and a new viewing card, which would then give me the two missing channels I was concerned about, etc. Grrrrrrr. . ate Mum donated sausage rolls with crisps . .PCd and surfed the Sky site and eventually found the 'small print' about the Freesat card 'one off' 20 charge for a viewing card. What a con!! So 'free'sat isn't free at all - and even then, you don't get ALL the channels you get on a freeview box (History, E4, ??)! :o( Hmmm. I'm gonna have to think about that for a bit. . called Mum back and got the compost bin advert phone number from her and then gave it a call. Turns out they were just up the road somewhere. Left Sally at home, jumped straight in the car and soon found the place. The guy was in his garden wiping the compost bin down. lol. Yep - that was pretty much exactly the type I was after - big - green - lid - hatch at the bottom. I'd been keeping the advert that came through with the bill from the South West Water company, which had been advertising a rain butt for sale which came with a free 220 litre compost bin. I already have a rain butt, at the top of the garden filled from the garage roof so I don't need on of those, but the advert also said it was possible to just buy the compost bin from them at a special offer price of 10 plus 5 delivery. That WAS a VERY cheap price. . I mentioned this to the people who were selling it, but was happy to pay the 10 they wanted, because it saved me the 5 delivery charge, and of course I could have it right away. Crammed it in the back of the car, briefly stopped off at Mums on the way home to show her and thank her for the tip off, and then headed back. The garden top 'utility' areaWhat I didn't realise until I got back home was that it actually wasn't the type that was just 10. It was bigger - a 330 litre capacity, which normally sells for anything up to around 40!!! So - 10 WAS a pretty damn good deal. :o) . . lifted a couple of the paving slabs in the corner of the top bit of the garden between the shed and the garage which I'm using for the rotary washing line, and dug the compost bin in a little, not far from the rainwater butt. Yeah - that'll work, although it is a long walk from the house, so compostable kitchen waste will have to be temporarily stored in something in the house, rather than just pop out every time I have some like I used to. . walked. What IS that Bob Dylan song that kept going round and round my head with the line "You've got everything you need . . ."? :o) . . touched base with BB . . ate microwave curry with four pieces of bread and butter . . TVd/PCd until early. pps
13 - Up around 8am . .Torrential rain! Walked in full rubber gear. BIG rain. Plenty of the roads were like rivers, and that weird drain cover on a certain corner, was doing that multiple 'water spout' thing again where the water was being forced back up and out! By the time we returned, poor Sally was wetter than if she'd been swimming! With my full 'rubber gear' I was actually ok except for my feet/shoes which were absolutely soaked and all squelching! . changed socks and then began the laborious, by hand, sanding of the box room floor, as the rain continued to pour. Put in hours of sanding down all over them before eventually deciding that all the boards need more wire-brush-washing! :o( Damn. I really am sick and tired of that damn floor. Trouble is, I've now set my mind on having it stripped and varnished, so I guess I have to give it my best shot (within reason). I'm certainly never going to do it ever again, so I guess I have to be relatively happy with the finish, before layering on the coats of 'that's it for evermore' varnish. I really don't want to have to waste any more time on it, but if I leave it as it is, I just know it'll bug me for ever more. :o( . . ate Mum donated ham rolls with crisps and spring onions. . took a break from the box room floor, and with the satellite dish experiments proving they WERE worth actually setting up, I messed around with the dishes and mounting brackets for ages, trying to see if it was possible to rig them up so they both fitted off the same wall mount. My rusty satellite dishesAfter wrestling for ages with all the rusted-solid nuts (much wire brushing and WD40 - only snapped one of the bolts) and various bits and pieces, I resolved the 'chinese puzzle' and worked out a way that would 'maybe' work. Sorted through all my nuts and bolts and found an unused packet of wall bolts that weren't really suitable but would maybe just do the trick. Eventually after much struggling, and a bit of hammer-drilling, I had the whole affair inelegantly bolted to the front of the house, just below and to the left of the steps to the front door. Rigged up the aerial lead temporarily through an open window, set up the portable TV on the window ledge, and with all the mountings still loose, eventually got a decent signal on the Sky dish and box, and a quite acceptable one on the analogue dish and box. Yep - that's gonna work. . . walked . . despite a bit of drizzle, I dragged out my tools and drill and with a fair bit of difficulty, managed to drill a 'relatively' neat hole through the hard wood window frame from beneath the cill, into the front room for the dish aerial cables (long term temporary). More messing around with the portable TV on the window ledge facing out, while I attempted to do the awkward final tuning and fixing of all the clamps etc, racing against the failing light. .BB called in the middle of things. "Not NOW!! I'll have to call you back!!" . minutes later next door popped out for chats and eventually asked if I'd be interested in a table and chairs they were getting rid of. Oohh, ooooh. Shut Sally safely in and then popped in to next door to have a look. Sadly it really wasn't the sort of table I could use, but it struck me as being a rather nice one for someone, and probably worth quite a bit of money. It was dark wood, rectangular with a couple of extendable fold out pieces, four matching chairs with ornately carved backs - and all the uprights on both the table and chairs were big carved spirals! That was NOT a piece of cheap rubbish. Potentially even a possible antique! It was SO hard to say no thanks, but it really just wasn't the sort of thing that suits this sort of house, and really too big for these little rooms, which was precisely why they were getting rid of it. Funny thing was, I'd actually seen it before! Apparantly it'd been offered and given to them by the people who lived here before they moved out. It'd been in my kitchen when I viewed the place. lol I suggested they e-bay it (and not take it to the tip as they were threatening!!!!), because it really was a nice well made set. Shame. . took the opportunity to have a look at how next door was laid out. Really very much a mirror image of my place pretty much, although somehow far more 'cluttered' I felt. I think they are in the process of much decorating themselves. What was particularly interesting to me was the underfloor area which I was able to have a look at. A section of floorboards was cut and loose, just inside their front door, which gave access to the underfloor area (which of course would be the same under my house). It really is a BIG space. Not big enough to use as a cellar, but certainly large enough for a massive amount of junk storage. Ooooh - I can't wait to pull up some floorboards downstairs and have a look under mine. Somehow, somewhere, I'm definitely going to have to construct some sort of access/trap door/stairs into that space! . .finished setting up and fixing the satellite dishes by torch light! . . ate a banana and biscuits . . touched base with BB . . TVd - lots of channels, but all of them rubbish and an inexplicably large number of them showing topless ladies wanting me to phone them!!!???. . ate defrosted chicken pies with crisps and then some chocolate. . TVd until bed around 1am. p
14 - Woken at 5:45am by the fridge freezer making that pneumatic-drill-like noise again. Went down and assaulted it to make it quiet and returned to bed but within five minutes it started again, so I ended up getting up to assault it some more! . . walked . . phoned Sky and ordered the 20 Freesat viewing card. I begrudge giving them that money, but figure it's more cost effective doing that (should be good for at least three years apparantly) than it would be having to call in an aerial company to sort out my rooftop aerial . . . walked with Sally to pick up my repeat perscription (6.85). . washed the box room floor again with an almost toothbrush sized wire brush! Took hours and physically, really was quite a work out! . . . ate ham sandwiches with crisps . . napped . . .walked. .Wrists and such aching bad . . . touched base with BB . . TVd and ate bowls of cornflakes and biscuits until bed around midnight.
15 - Up around 6:45am . .walked. Rain on the way out, sunny spells on the way back. . PCd this briefly and then ended up surfing e-bay, just seeing what office desks and PC furniture is actually out there. Once again, I didn't see anything that suits. :o( I've a horrible feeling that trying to knock something up myself to fit the space I want to use, is going to be the only answer!! . . received the Sky freeview card in the mail, which seemed like a pretty amazingly prompt service. Read through the blurb, inserted the card and called the phone number for activation. . back to the box room for an initial sanding down of the floorboards after the latest 'wash'. Hard, dusty, hot work doing it by hand with a small sanding block, but it must be said, I WAS right to delay things and wash those boards down again. They really have come up pretty well this time - as good as I'm prepared to try and get them anyway. The amount of time and effort I'm putting in to them has really reached the point of farce. Ludicrous for such a small area. I'm really tired of it and am desperate to have it over and done with so I can move on to another room! . dabbed on some wood filler here and there, where a couple of the boards looked particularly ragged. I'm NOT actually after a perfect finish believe it or not. I have no intention of filling all the old nail holes, tryng to make them all perfectly flat or even filling the gaps between the boards. I want them to look like the OLD floorboards they actually are, and NOT start to look like some sort of cheap laminate affair. I can't stand those laminate floors that are all the rage. They always look too perfect and 'artificial' somehow, sound awfully clickety clackety, and god help anyone needing to gain access to the underfloor space at any time (for wiring/plumbing, etc). I also wonder just exactly how hard wearing those laminte floors really are?I wonder if in a few years, everyone will be tearing them back out? . .somewhere around 2pm the Sky viewing card was actually activated, defaulting to the local BBC channel and giving me channel 4 and 5 etc. :o) . . cooked and ate four cheeseburgers . . napped . .sanded off a couple of the areas of filler . . .walked . .TVd, wanting to get on with more sanding, but just too tired, and my wrists are aching really badly . . drank the last of the tins of Stella . . touched base with BB . . ate defrosted sausage rolls, crisps and some chocolate . . TVd until bed around midnight. ppd
16 - Up around 6:15am to the sound of the fridge again. Gave it another beating! . .walked. . PCd a bit of this, not eager to get back on my hand sand knees for yet more sanding! Uggh. . .unscrewed the removeable floorboards in the box room . . left Sally at home and walked to Mums to 'take possesion' of her double section ladder. It's not been used since before Dad died, and won't be, so she said I could keep it at my place. If only it were longer! I'm pretty sure it'd struggle to even reach the eaves . . straight back home carrying the ladder and set it up at the front of the house and then set about trying to re-route where the phone line comes into the house. .carefully measured up in the box room from the corner of the window glass, to an accessible point below the floor, and then climbed the ladder and translated the measurements to the outside wall as best I could. Started drilling the hole, only for the drill to break half way through the wall!! The damn gears have worn out. Managed to somehow coax both my old broken drills (same worn gears problem on both) to finish drilling the hole. Phew - thank goodness for that. So, I need a new drill before I can make another hole in anything! :o( . . cut the phone wire off where it disappears into the front door frame, dug out and unthreaded it from where it went through the porch canopy, pulled out a couple of the wall clips (complete with a large amount of the wall masonary paint!!!) and successfully threaded the wire through the wall and into the underfloor void in the box room. I was worried there wouldn't be enough spare length on the wire, but there was - just. Another six inches would have been preferable to reach straight to the master socket, but it wouldn't, so I used the original small junction box from near the front door (after having unceramoniously cut off all the trailing extension leads) and screwed that to one of the underfloor rafters. Very suprised that only two of those half a dozen or more incoming wires were actually connected. I was expecting at least four to be? Made a silly mistake and got a bit lost in which wire was which during the changeover (is the orange or the white A or B, and does it matter?) but eventually found my way back and had a dial tone. Connected everything up and tested things by calling myself using my mobile and then firing up the PC in the back room on the end of the extension lead, to make sure I still had my broadband etc etc. All appeared ok. . touched base with Mum and she called back which finally confirmed all was in order. :o) So, until I get round to decorating and modifying the rest of the house, all the working phone sockets in the house are in that one room!! lol Actually, given I have a triple handset portable/wireless phone set, that isn't really much of a problem. Also, it would appear that the awful buzz I was getting on my recorded ansaphone messages, which actually rendered it pretty much useless, has been cured. So, I think I'm on the right track with my new phone sockets circuit. . dabbed a little filler into the holes in the outside wall before carrying the ladder up the street and all the way round the back to stash it in the garage . . . ate a chicken and veg pie with chips . . napped . . walked . . TVd . . touched base with BB. Wow - some good news for a change. Looks like she 'may' have landed herself a job at last. . ate liver sausage sandwiches with crisps and then bowls of co-co pops . .TVd until bed around midnight. p
17 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 6:45am . . .walked. Cloudy but very warm out. Cleared up three carriers of beer cans, bottles etc from the lower pill box. . PCd a bit of this . . .sanded the floor - by hand!!!!!. . .tested out the floor varnish on the smallest of the bits of removable floorboard, out in the conservatory. Hmm - not as good a finish as I'd imagined it would be, and it sure does make that wood darker. . called a halt to sanding, vacuumed and then 'just went for it' with the first coat of varnish. I probably should have done more sanding down, but it really does seem to be getting absurd how much time and effort I've put into it all! I could spend the rest of my life sanding down those boards - and end up with a superbly smooth, but paper thin floor. lol It just isn't worth investing any more time and effort. . BB called . . ate liver sausage and lettuce sandwiches with crisps. .did laundry chores . .TVd/PCd . . put another coat of varnish on the floor . . . walked and treated myself to a can of Stella sat in the woods, to celebrate the milestone of actually varnishing the floor. Incredibly warm and sunny out. . . TVd . . ate a microwaved curry with four pieces of bread and butter, a packet of Mum donated toffee popcorn and biscuits . . TVd until bed around 11:30pm. pp
18 - Up around 6:30am . . walked . .PCd this briefly. . put another coat of varnish on the floor . . tidied up around the place a bit . . put another coat of varnish on the floor. It isn't 'quite' the smooth gloss finish I'd imagined - but it ain't bad. On the tin it says to sand down the last but one coat. There IS maybe just enough left in that tin to do another coat, but I think I'm just going to call it quits as it is, just in case there isn't enough for another decent coat after a sanding (FAR too expenive to buy another tin), and because I've simply had enough and don't want to do any more! So - leave it for 72 hours before it sees 'heavy traffic' says the tin. I guess that means I don't actually bring the computer desk in for a few days, so that'll give me the time to paint the skirtings and dabble with a few areas that need attention. (In a couple of places along some edges, the lining wallpaper has 'bubbled' where I presumably didn't get the paste coverage right. Somehow I'm gonna have to open those bubbles up and get some glue into them and then emulsion over the mess to cover it up. :o( (I've always thought a hypodermic needle and syringe would be ideal for such things, but I've never had one to try.) . . did laundry and dishwashing chores . received a phone call somewhere around midday from the doctors surgery. They'd had a cancellation and did I want to be brought forward and see the counscellor at 2pm instead of next week!! Err - ummm - I guess - ok - why not! Fairly predictably, within five minutes of the call, I had a splitting ('stress' ?) headache! . finished all the dishwashing and then ate liver sausage and lettuce sandwiches with crisps, and a couple of squares of chocolate. .left Sally at home and nervously walked to the doctors. Seemed like an agonisingly long wait in the waiting room, feeling suprisngly panicky! The woman counscellor eventually turned up to summon me, somewhere around five past two or later. .

-//unfinished//- blah blah blah blah much!

so she's gonna phone me some time and let me know what they can offer???! Huh?? Bizarre!?. .briefly sat on the wall outside and rolled a much needed cigarette and then raced straight back home (couldn't get back here fast enough!!?) to 'recover'. Inevitably, it all seemed like a stressful, humiliating, totaly pointless waste of time. :o( . . ate a mass of biscuits and then had a MUCH needed nap for a couple of hours. Woke (as usual of late) with aching arms and clenched fists. Sleeping can be such a tiring business! I always seem to wake, physically exhausted. . walked . .vacuumed. . touched base with BB . . TVd . . ate bowls of corn flakes . . TVd until bed around midnight. pps
19 - Up around 6:30am . . walked . .painted a top coat on the box room skirting boards and then spent pretty much the rest of the day gardening. I can't believe how fast the lawn and hedges grow. It's almost a full time job! Cut the back lawn, trimmed the hedges with the hedge trimmer, cut everything into inch long pieces and put it in my new compost bin, and then did the same with the front garden. . Mum popped in somewhere around midday (complete with the weeks TV schedules newspaper and some bits and pieces of food - and a pork pie treat for Sally as usual. Sally gets very excited to see Mum. lol) and gave me the excuse to stop and have a much needed break. . finished off trimming stuff in the front garden (cut my hand nastily with the secateurs) after Mum had gone. Blimey - one trim around the place and that compost bin is approaching half full already! Hope it starts breaking down pretty quick. . TVd and ate Mum donated sausage rolls and spring onions with crisps and then a couple of mint KitKats. . napped until around 6pm . . . walked . . sat in the garden . . tried swapping the green (!!) uplighter in the back bedroom with the original, now redundant pleated ivory one from the box room, in the hope it would make the back bedroom just a little brighter. It didn't! SUCH a dark depressing room in this colour! I just can't wait to get the PC out of there, then maybe I'll want to sit with it a bit more. Once again, trying to sit here and type this is just SUCH a struggle. . touched base briefly with BB . . PCd a bit of this . . TVd and ate Mum donated pastie, crisps and Kitkats . . TVd/PCd until way into early. pps
20 - Woken earlier by Sally, snoozed on then uip around 8am after not enough sleep . . walked . . tidied up just a little and then finally forced myself to sit at the PC and get on top of the big pile of long overdue paperwork and balanced my accounts. So far so good. The bad news is, I started on my last 50g packet of duty free tobacco yesterday. When that is gone, I'm gonna be in big trouble. No way can I afford the shop prices - I've checked recently and figure at high street/supermarket prices, I have around a 12 a week or more, smoking habit!!!! That's something I simply can't afford, but I'm really not in a 'giving up' frame of mind right now!!!! :o( I HAVE been dabbling with trying to reduce how much I've been smoking these last couple of weeks (I save up to four or five a day by not taking my cigarette tin with me when I walk Sally twice a day!), but of course 'cutting down' never works - especially when DIY/decorating jobs are paced and rewarded by cigarette breaks. I have a horrible feeling my dwindling savings are liable to quite literally go up in smoke! . . Mum called asking if it was ok and then popped in with Auntie M and Uncle C to show them the house . . cooked up three slices of Mum donated bacon, three eggs, fried bread and potatoes for a big mid afternoon lunch . . napped fitfully until around 6pm . . .walked . . PCd a bit of this. I really should try and get on top of this and get it uploaded before I dismantle the PC equipment and desk, and try and move it all into the box room (probably tomorrow). I'm not sure how that is gonna go, and could see me end up off line / without a useable PC for a bit, particularly if I decide to try and 'modify' the PC desk like I'm tempted to!! . . TVd and ate bowls of co-co pops and the last of the Asda's own chocolate I've had since Bristol! . .touched base with BB . TVd until bed around 11:30pm. pp
21 - Broken sleep then up around 7am. My sleeping has been disturbed of late by that bottom front tooth I'm soon gonna lose! It's become SO loose (and the one next to it is on its way too!), when I clench and grind my teeth in my sleep as I do, it gets pushed around and bent out of position and occasionally so much, it hurts and wakes me. Maybe I should just go and buy some toffee to bite into, and be done with it!? . . walked under a grey sky . . PCd this, pretty much all morning! . . had a go at dismantling the PC unit and moving it into the box room, minus the section that would have blocked part of the window and the slide out keyboard shelf which I can't get on with. Awkward and took a few hours, but pretty much got there in the end. Celebrated by re-potting the plant that was left by the previous owners in the sun room, into one of those old plastic paint tubs with the writing taken off, and then sat it in the corner of the room on a bit of round-the-wrong-way carpet tile to protect the floor . In the grand tradition of 'waste not want not' and 'make do and mend', the black pot the plant was in, is perfect for use as a (non combustable) waste bin in there too. So - there it is after all that hard work - my new 'PC-room-with-a-view'. So - that's ONE room I'm now fairly happy to sit in (even if I can't watch the TV in there yet). Hah. :o) . . pottered around with this and that and then PCd and played just a little music . . didn't eat anything all day so figured I may as well make the best use of that situation, so headed off with Sally just a little early and bought myself a can of Stella Artois at the local store on the way to sit in the woods again(1.19. Blimey - it'd be cheaper to be an alcoholic than a smoker!!). Damn I like sitting in those woods. .It occured to me while I was, when replaying the counselling session in my mind yet again, I'd probably given her a completely false view of myself. That's the trouble with trying to convey your whole personality in an hour (ridiculous of course) - the smallest thing can give the totally wrong impression. One of the questions she asked was, did I suffer from feelings of guilt. On the spot and all stressed out as I was, my panicing answer was "about specific events throughout my life (like having Sheba put down) but not generally". On reflection, I think that is probably inaccurate and will have given her a totally wrong impression. What I didn't mention was the number of 'specific events' which cause me guilt. Hell - yes, I feel guilty about something or other all the damn time! For example - I feel guilty about drinking a can of beer for goodness sake, because I can't really afford it and could turn into an alcoholic overnight because I like the feeling when doing so! Sheesh! . . fried up four sausages, two rashers of bacon, and two eggs and ate with chips and four pieces of bread and butter followed by a handful of kit kats . . touched base briefly with BB . . TVd until bed around 11pm. dpp
22 - Woke earlier, snoozed on then up around 7am with a splitting headache . . walked in the hot sun . . PCd this briefly. Wow - this room is SO bright in the sun, even with the blind closed, I'm getting a bit too-much-for-comfort reflective glare off the screen!! lolol . . .left Sally at home and drove to shop. I HAD to today - I'm almost out of the dry dog food. As usual, when having to do that long drive to the pet store, I tried to combine it with getting other necessary stuff done at the same time too. . 17kg sack of PAL Complete for 17.99 and 72 tins of Winalot for 26.55 at the pet store. . on to the Focus DIY store. Walked slowly around everything for ages and then spent 49.51 on a new cheapo electric drill, some paint, a lamp shade, socket boxes and two more of those expensive broadband filter phone sockets . . on to Sainsburys to spend 18.95 on a few supplies. . ate ham rolls with crisps and then pottered around, sat about, TVd, PCd the rest of the day away . . .walked just a little early. When I was in Sainsburys, I had a look to see if the Stella lager was cheaper than locally. It wasn't particularly, but what I did see on the shelf which caught my interest was a four pack of tins of Tennents lager. It was labelled as SUPER strong and had a nonsense 'please drink responsibly' message printed on the tin. It was 9% alcoholic volume!!!! Blimey - that's like double many of the others - and only 1.29 for the 500ml can! With my new found interest in having an occasional drink, I couldn't resist buying some, just to try. I actually wasn't particularly in the mood for having a drink again, but I was so eager to try it to see what the effect of a single can would be. Didn't dare take it to the woods just in case I got a bit silly, being the 'lightweight' I am, so I walked Sally a little early and then returned to the safety of the back garden to try one. . Nasty stronger taste - but then for me, alcoholic drinks always taste nasty. I don't drink for the taste or any pleasure in the drinking - I drink for the effect of the drug! Suffice it to say - that 'measured dose' of one tin was certainly enough for me for one evening thank you very much. Very tipsy. lol . .touched base with poor BB who I think couldn't wait to get off the phone cause I was being 'silly' lol. . ate ham and lettuce rolls with crisps and then bowls of corn flakes . . TVd until bed around 11pm. ppaad
23 - Woken earlier by Sally, growled at her and snoozed on, then up around 7:15am . . walked . . PCd a bit of this . .Mum called saying she was having another gas man in to quote on having her boiler replaced and he'd be there later. I'd said that next time she had someone in, I'd come and listen, cause I know a 'little' about such things. Not long after she called to say he'd arrived and I dropped everything and raced up there. He seemed ok and confirmed some of the bad news the gas rep. had apparantly said, about how the regulations have changed and Mum'll need a new bigger diameter gas supply to the boiler and a drain pipe plumbed all the way to an outside drain! That is gonna be a lot of 'floors up' type upheaval - especially nasty for Mum!! :o( . . Mum popped down (with treats for Sally and some corned beef, etc. for me) to inspect the PC room and be suitably impressed . . ate two Mum donated mini pork pies with some about-to-go-off lettuce, tomato and spring onions with crisps. . .napped . .PCd . . 'Just' a routine dog walk these days!!! :o)walked. I think I've said here before that I still can't feel - um - 'comfortable' about where I've ended up, but I AM able to kinda 'rationalise'/recognise that it really IS a neat place to be living - and SO much better in so many ways than where I was before. In order to try and help convince my subconscious that I should be enjoying my time here, I decided to take the camcorder with me tonight, did the 'full' walk through the woods, and took a bunch of low quality still images all along the way - and knocked up a GIF animation to give an impression of what my twice daily walks here are like. The 28 frame animation (which is a bit large (888kb) for embedding here!!) starts off with a shot of Sally in the back garden - various shots along the way - and ends with her in the front garden after the walk. Door to door, complete with a brief sit in the woods, a sit on one of the beaches, a sit in BGdns, and taking sixty photos along the way, was no more than an hour and a half. It doesn't do the scenery justice, but it gives an idea. It IS amazing isn't it - living just a few minutes walk from such scenery. I can recognise it. I just need to learn to feel it. I'm almost starting to, maybe, sometimes. :o/ Somehow (/$?!!), BBs gonna have to come back and taste a bit of this. . PCd the GIF. . touched base with BB . . ate corned beef sandwiches with crisps and then some Mum donated chocolate cake things - actually the whole pack! . . TVd/PCd until early. pps
24 - Woke earlier then snoozed on until around 8am after not enough sleep! . . walked in the hot sun . .PCd this. Damn - all out of webspace again! Ended up having to sort out how, and then put that gif on my new free Virgin webspace! I've gotta make a decision about all this mess and decide what I'm gonna do about the site! If I decide to continue with it, I'm gonna have to spend hours reworking it all afresh. :o( . . did a little laundry . . crammed my bed in the back bedroom surrounded by boxes and junk and 'started on' the front bedroom!!! Pulled the carpet up and raised a couple of the previously raised floorboards, as an 'exploratory' to see what's where for the works I need to do . . . cooked and ate four burgers in bread rolls . . napped . . walked. Wow it is SO warm! . .started removing a little of the woodchip wallpaper from around the bottom of the bedroom bay window. Predictably the stud walls are all in pretty rough shape behind that paper! :o( . .touched base with BB . . ate bowls of cornflakes . . TVd until bed around 11:30pm. pps
25 - Woken in the night by Sally coming up to the bedroom to escape the noise from the fridge. Went down and gave it one good thump and it shut up. Back to bed until woken by Sally again around 6am!? Snoozed on for half an hour before getting up . . . walked . .spent hours scraping off wallpaper. Wow - this is hard work and even slower progress than the box room was!! Heavily painted (red!!!) woodchip over lining paper, and a flaking layer of patchy old gloss paint under that (with traces of that room also having been purple at some point)! Just getting the woodchip off is an inch by inch struggle! It's gonna take days and I already have a blister on my hand! :o( I've made a start but I'm really not sure about the way to go with that room. In an ideal world, I'd remove the 'fitted' cupboards that are in there and do a 'proper' renovation/redecoartion of everything. Trouble is that would leave me without ANY storage for my clothes. I think I may well do 'half' a temporary job and leave those cupboards in place for the time being. Shame. Now I know more or less what I'm doing, and know what works and what doesn't, I reckon I could have that room looking similar or better than the PC room if I didn't have to work around those cupboards - even maybe doing a similar job on the floor!!!!! Maybe in the future. I should just settle for brightening it up and getting rid of that awful depressing red colour on the walls - but probably put the original red carpet back down for the time being, once I'm done. . in the middle of things the counsellor phoned!?? Not sure why. I suspect she is at a loss about what to do about me. Lots of awkward silences which I felt obliged to fill with non stop drivel! She eventually booked me in for an appointment to see her again on 8th June . . BB called . . scraped wall paper in the greenhouse like heat, until exhaustion around 2pm . . ate liver sausage and lettuce sandwiches with crisps. . napped . . walked. Stopped off at the store on the way home and bought some milk - AND some tobacco 5.59!!!!!!!!! :o( . . scraped off a little more wallpaper until around 9pm . . TVd . . ate bowls of co-co pops . . TVd until bed gone midnight. pps
26 - Woken around 6am by the sound of Sally's claws on floorboards as she had a stretch. Ooops - I'd left the front bedroom door open and she'd gone in amongst all the bits of paint and wallpaper and lay down!! . . . walked early picking up a carrier bag of litter along the way . . PCd this . . scraped wallpaper and paint from one of the walls in my bedroom . . Mum popped in with the usual Saturday donations of paper and food . . ate Mum donated sausage rolls with crisps . . showered and napped . . .walked . .bowls of corn flakes . . pps
27 - Up around 6am. I hadn't really appreciated how bad the weather was last night. A pool of water was evident on the inside of the living room window cill (dripped down from the leaking bedroom windows I think) and the nicer of the solar garden lights, the tall stand alone 'lantern' type had been blown over onto the front patio and snapped off from its pole! :o( . . walked in a break in the weather somehow. What a difference an hour makes. . scraped the bedroom stud wall and eventually finished removing most of the layer of flaky paint. Bloody hard work! :o( . . ate liver sausage, tomato, onion, cheese, mayo and lettuce sandwiches with crisps . .got clean and then TVd/PCd . . walked in full rubber gear in the strong wind and torrential rain. Even Sally hesitated at the front door and didn't seem too keen on the idea of going out in it. . touched base with BB . . ate four defrosted sausage rolls with crisps, a banana and soem Mum donated chocolate raisins . . TVd until early to bed shortly after 10pm. As soon as I'd layed down, the b***dy fridge started making that noise again. Had to get back up and go give it a whack! Had to do the same when woken in the night by it later too! Grrrr. pp
28 - Up around 6:45am . . .walked in the sun and cold wind . . worked in the front bedroom, hacking out, plastering, filling, and gluing a bit of the window cill. Spent hours on it and didn't actually acheive very much at all! Headachey. :o( . .ate Mum donated liver and bacon pate on bread rolls with crisps and then napped. . didn't wake until gone 6pm! . . walked . .despite all that napping, I still feel absolutely tired out! Ate bowls of corn flakes . . touched base with BB . . TVd too tired to move, until bed around 11:30pm. pp
29 - Woken around 4am by a weird noise. Turned out to be Sally, launching herself at the back door! She'd been sick in the kitchen (lots!) and needed to use the garden too!! :o( . let her out to squirt, did a minimal amount of clearing up and then had her back in and went back to bed. . up around 7:30am . . walked in the sun. . cleared up and washed a bit of the carpet . . PCd this. Blimey - a sudden explosion (300+) in junk mail!!?? . . worked in the bedroom hacking out some damaged areas of plaster and then replastering and filling all over the place. A subtle little twist in the wrong way and I put my back out again!!? Not 'completely', but pretty painful nonetheless. :o( . . ate luncheon meat, lettuce and mayo sandwiches with crisps and then some marmalade on toast. . napped until around 5:45pm . . walked . . ate luncheon meat sandwiches with crisps, a banana and biscuits . . touched base with BB. Her first day at her new job . . TVd until bed around midnight. pps
30 - Up around 7:15am . . .walked in the rain . .worked in the dust . .definitely rain penetrating the bay! :o( . . walked with Sally up to the store to buy yet more filler and sandpaper . . Mum popped in . . ate luncheon meat and salad sandwiches with crisps . . napped . . walked . . TVd . .touched base with BB . .TVd too tired to move until eventually to bed just before midnight. pp
31 - Woken by the fridge around 3am . . woken by Sally around 6am! Let her have access to the garden and returned to bed until around 7am . . walked between heavy showers . . . .worked in the dust . pp