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<My Diary Archive 2003 My Diary Archive>

September
1 - Woke around 7:45am . . . walked and collared a few of the regular dog walkers, told them about the doomed dog, and asked if they recognised it or knew the owner. None did and I was told tales of how people have abandoned dogs in the field before now!! Rushed back expecting the roofers to have arrived and started work, but they hadn't!! Still no sign of them as I PCd this around 9:45am. I'm starting to get a real uneasy feeling about these guys. :o( . . .spent a few hours grinding back a bit of the alcove wall and then cementing another brick into the patchwork rebuild of the firebreast right hand pillar. Such a crumbling mess that I daren't replace any more than one brick every couple of days! . . . around 11:30, Terry the roofer guy turned up and informed me the skylight windows still hadn't come and they wouldn't be doing any work here today!! Grrrr. This is exactly what I'd feared - hanging around waiting for the work to be done and being messed around with them not turning up! :o( . . . slept for a few hours late afternoon . . . BB called . . . walked and found 5p . . . TVd till early. Charles Bronson died this day. (3/10)
2 - Up before 7am . . . walked . . . waited for the roofers to show and spent a bit of the time firing off abuse complaints to various ISPs regarding the offensive porn type e-mails that are continually being sent to the school site!! Seems outrageous to me that a site which is easily identifiable as 'something' to do with a school, gets daily mails with titles like 'Free Tiny Teen **** Movies!', 'Steamy Dream girls getting nailed' and MUCH worse!! . . . gave up waiting and got on with cementing in more pieces of the puzzle that is the firebreast right hand pillar! Slow work. Increased the amount of destruction in the kitchen by removing the awful old wooden boxing-in of the old back boiler pipes and fully exposed the right hand side of the firebreast wall. BIG mess - again - still - more!! Got angrier and angrier about the roofers no-show (and the not bothering to let me know whether or not they are turning up) and eventually rang 'Terry' around midday asking him what was going on. Same 'waiting for the windows' excuse! Told him I'd wait another couple of days and then he should cancel the order for the windows and just get on with the roof without them. He suggested he'd be here in the afternoon to do some of the coping stones. He didn't show up. If there is one thing I absolutely cannot stand, it is being kept hanging around waiting on someone who does't turn up when they say they will, and who every day says 'it'll be tomorrow' when tomorrow never comes! The weather forecast is fine until around the weekend, and this delay is just wasting the perfect roofing weather!! I'm in SUCH a mess with all this going on - it's preying on my mind - big time! Arrrgggghhh!! . . .walked and ended up feeling so, SO miserable about this horrendous period of 'hard manual labour' I seem to be trapped in. This has all been going on for too long - and there is no prospect of any end in sight for - um - another year or more? Much of this work I'm doing (not the roof) is absolutely unique to THIS house. There can't be another house in the world that I would have to do all this to. This anti damp nonsense I'm trying to do, was entirely caused by JE when he threw in the concrete floors like he did. All he succeeded in doing was 'driving' the damp up all the walls. If I had wooden floors, a cavity beneath and air bricks in the outside walls, this wouldn't have happened. The damp would have simply risen as far as the underfloor cavity before evaporating, rather than being drawn up the walls looking for a way out!! Then there is all this weird dust that holds the house together instead of proper cement mortar. The ONLY saving grace about this, is that what I'm actually doing wouldn't be possible if it WAS proper cement. Using the drill to ease bricks out of the middle of a wall is 'relatively' simple when all that holds them in is layers of dust! Cementing them back in is more difficult, although a favourite old bent butter knife has proven to be the ideal re-pointing tool. I'm tired of it all though - I haven't lived much of a life for a long time! . . . touched base with poor BB and she got the brunt of my bad mood . . . TVd till late and then later when I realised some extra channels had temporarily appeared on my TV again. Couldn't resist forcing myself to stay awake to watch some guy restoring an old Harley motorcycle on a Discovery channel until around 11:30pm!! (3/10)
3 - Up around 7:30am . . . walked and found 1. Schoolkids are all back at school . . . back to the house just after 9am and the roofers were here WITH the skylight windows. Oh thank goodness! Made coffees and then climbed up into the attic to discuss with the roofer on the outside, where they should put the skylights. (WOW - that rotten purling sure IS rotten - whole roof was bouncing terribly as he moved around on the temporary battens. I commented on it and he told me horror tales about a job he'd been on where the whole thing had suddenly slipped off the roof!!!!! If that happens with mine I'll turn into a jibbering idiot for sure!!) Probably should have given this all much more thought and measured up and such, but I can't see it'll really make much difference. Told them to put them more or less equally spaced and low enough so you'd be able to see out of them pretty easy when a floor is put in around 12 inches higher than the ceiling rafters. Where the coarses of tiles will come had much of a bearing. Who knows - may all be a waste of money - I may never get round to actually putting a room up there! I think I'm about running out of the energy it would take. . . PCd this, keeping out of the way as the whole house shuddered and shook with the banging and sawing overhead! . . .203 virus intercept notifications from the ISP this morning!!! This is ridiculous - takes me ages each day to download them all then sort through the mess! . . . developed a crippling headache as the chaos continued. Agony . . . Hole in the bedroom ceiling!around about midday I had a look up in the back bedroom and found that they'd dropped a large piece of wood and put a head sized hole in the bedroom ceiling, right above the bed and the whole bed was covered in debris and dust! Got pretty overwhelmed with despair and felt rather tearfull. I'm living in a derelict house for christs sake! :o( That is gonna be SO hard to patch up without it sticking out like a sore thumb. Yet more work for me to do. . mid afternoon one of the roofers seemed to be spending a lot of time clearing stuff up and stacking the new coping stones neatly in the front garden - the first time any attempt had been made to tidy? That can mean only one thing - they aren't gonna be back for a while - I just bet! :o( At 3:45pm all four Velux windows were installed in the roof and the guys were in their van and gone, without a word. See you next week then?!!! And wind and rain are forecast for Sunday!!!! Arrrrgghhh!!!!! . . .retrieved the packets of instructions for the windows from next doors garden and the skip!! . . . lay down in the dust and debris and tried to sleep off my headache. Almost asleep and BB called to touch base. Couldn't sleep and ended up cementing one more brick into the right hand firebreast pillar . . .headache eased . . . walked and stopped for sausage and chips takeaway on the way home . . . touched base with BB . . . TVd till late feeling very down.(3/10)aaaa
4 - Woken by Sally around 7am . . . walked . . . tried to start the car and it wouldn't! :o( . . .PCd this . . . as suspected, no roofers, so figured it was well past time for me to admit defeat with my eye, and take a trip to the eye hospital. Managed to get the car started again. Dunno what the hell is going on with it where one minutre it absolutely WILL NOT start - leave it for a while and then it will!? Left Sally around 9:30am and headed into town on the bus. (2.20 return) Didn't dare drive (may well be blind on the way home) and no where down there to park anyway. Walked to the eye hospital and was in and waiting by 10am. After about an hour I was in to be seen. Turns out I had a piece of metal (!!!!?) about the size of a full stop stuck to the middle bit of my eye (the bit you absolutely cannot touch). The woman checked under my eye lids but no sign of any debris. Apparantly what happens in such circumstances is the metal slowly rusts and gets stuck to everything and creates the pain and problems I've been having!! The remedy? You take a hypodermic syringe needle and gently scrape away at the metal and rust and pick it out!!! Eeeeewwwwww!!!!! . A couple of squirts of pain deadening stuff and away we went with the needle. REAL unpleasant having to keep your eye open and watch that coming towards you. Glad she wasn't as shakey nervous as I was. She showed me what she managed to remove - TINY little dot of black stuff. She said I'd need to squirt in some opthalmic ointment every two hours for a couple of days and I'd have to return on Saturday to have some of the rust scraped away!!!! Damn - but can't complain. Didn't fancy having to use Sally as a guide dog - first sign of a cat and I'd be dragged under a bus! Paid the pescription charge (6.80 I think it was) and waited for the small tube of ointment. Dashed to get on the bus and home before the pain relief stuff wore off! . . . Home by around midday to find the roofers were in attendance! Excellent. Moved the car out of the way of the dangling old coping stones as they were roped down. They needed water for cement! At last - some 'rebuilding'! Managed to drag the BIG hosepipe Dad had given me, through the bathroom window - through the house and out of the letterbox to give them water as and when they needed it. Um - is it tempting fate to suspect I'll soon have to be buying a new hose end once they've broken that one? . . .BB called and I had to admit she was right and I should have gone to see about my eye sooner - ' I told you so!' :o\ . . .sat around in front the TV but mostly with the sound off listening to whatever the roofers were getting up to. Uncomfortably revealing listening to their conversations!! Coping stones and cement were hauled up onto the roof throughout the day and I had great hopes we were making some good progress. Squirted stuff in my bleary eye every couple of hours and sat around wearing dark glasses lots. . . The last of the roofers disappeared around 4:30pm with still a bit of the back party wall to be done. The minute they'd gone I dashed around looking up (dug out my binoculars) to see how it was all going. Hang on!! Oh NO!!!! Roller coaster botch job!The long wall at the back of the house (actually my neighbours wall!!) had been done, but no attention had been given to laying all the copings in the same 'plane'. It looked like a roller coaster!!! For goodness sake!!!! That clinches it - I think I should have used someone else!!!!!!! Who in their right mind would have done a job lke that!! WHAT a botch!! Can I turn a blind eye (ha ha!!) to that for ever more? That work is gonna outlive me - I'll have to look at that for the rest of my time here!! I don't know. And what, I'd made clear to 'Terry' was vital - the watertight, good joining to the neighbours existing render, had seemingly not been taken into account at all (maybe that's because a final unibond/render skim has yet to be done?)! The last coping on the wall was even propped up with a piece of wooden batton for the cement to set!!? . . . despaired! . . . TVd . . . walked, involuntarily looking at every similar roof with butress wall copings in the neighbourhood. Not a single one has been botched like mine!! Mine sticks out like a sore thumb!! It'll look even worse if they eventually manage to put the drip strip on straight!! :o( . . . called on next door and met them out in the garden and asked if they would be prepared to put up with what had been done. They said they would, despite what they called a 'botch', as long as it was all watertight when finished. VERY understanding of them. . . BB called . . . TVd and ate pizza but wasn'ty really present with myself. Head was racing and disappearing into fantasy land rehearsing having confrontations with the roofers - and the possible consequences! (Wish I hadn't seen so many of those 'Builders From Hell' type TV shows). Not sure I can face it. :o( I AM the customer - it 'should' be SO easy to get the job done to an acceptable standard - what on earth happened to 'professional pride in a good job done'? It's SO hard for me!! :o( . . . to bed exhausted, miserable and bleary eyed, around midnight. (3/10)a
5 - Up around 7:30 . . . 'breakfasted' in the garden with coffee, smokes and looking up at the copings. Decided - whatever the consequences, I'm not putting up with that. I think I've been very tolerant and put up with more than I should, without complaint, already. . . walked, quickly . . . took the cowards way out and rang 'Terry' and told him 'we have a problem' and that I wasn't gonna accept what had been done. He said 'no problem' . . . PCd this . . . the roofers arrived. They confirmed they'd spoken to Terry and came up with some nonsense about how the copings must have dropped on the cement because of the weight of them. Yeah right. Made them a coffee and left them to hopefully rectify the problem, hack off and relay all the copings!! What a waste of precious time! . . . sat around all uptight and miserable as the work continued up above. . carried on squirting stuff in my eye every couple of hours. Nasty stuff - amazing how it doesn't take long before somehow it drains down through my face and appears in the back of my throat!! Yukky taste!! . . . Around lunchtime they all disappeared briefly to go and get something to eat which gave me the chance to dash out back and have a look up. That wall still wasn't 'quite' straight but was certainly much improved, and they had even started to lay out the tiles!! Excellent. . .Progressas the afternoon wore on it sounded as though tiles were being cut to fill the awkward gaps and the leadwork was being started. They even confirmed a couple of them would be here tomorrow. Excellent excellent, EXCELLENT!! The weather forecast is for showers tomorrow and gales on Sunday!!!!! :o( . .there can be no doubt (I MUST keep it in mind) that my attitude towards all this is influenced VERY MUCH by 'the way I am' and by my impossibly high standards. I guess it doesn't matter what I end up with - I WILL be able to pick fault with it until the cows come home - most especially because I simply didn't do it myself! No matter what I say about what has gone on here with this roof project - I readily accept that the amount of hard physical work that those guys have done is just incredible. I am in awe of how they can keep going like that, day after day, hour after hour. One of the most incredible things to me is how they have only once or twice needed to use the bathroom!! How is that possible?!! . . . touched base with BB . . .roofers were gone by around 3:15pm with the assurance that at least one of them would be in attendance tomorrow, so they'd need the power and hosepipe available. . . had a look as best I could at their progress. Definitely feel a lot happier now I have the protection of many of the tiles - although, did they HAVE to leave that odd loose one perched right on the ridge just ready to be blown off!! Wow - wish they'd have that skip taken away. It's SO overloaded, I don't see how it can possibly be moved!! . . left Sally at home and drove to shop - haven't done so for ages and need essentials. Probably shouldn't have driven actually because of my eye being SO light sensitive and wanting to close every time I drove through a sunny patch! Very hard to judge the width of the car with one eye! . . . stowed all the shopping, grabbed a sabdwhich and lay down for a nap. The nap turned out to be a long four hour sleep until around 9pm!! All this sitting around being up tight is SO exhausting! . . . had to go out and pick up a load of rubbish that had fallen off the skip (it was bound to!) before I walked!! . . . walked late and found 2p. First 'night walk' this 'winter'!! . . . not tired enough for sleep and TVd/PCd till early. Seems like all of a sudden, the mass of virus intercepts I've been getting every day has stopped. Thank goodness - took ages each day downloading and sorting through them all. Typical it stops just after I'd invested the time in experimenting with the mail program and setting up a rule that all the virus intercepts should be automatically deleted after download. Oh well. (4/10)aa
6 - Up with the alarm around 7am. It's raining! . . .walked in rubber and found 3p . . . dragged the hosepipe back through the house ready for the roofers, although what with the rain and all, dunno what they'll be able to get on and do. Moved the car along out of the way too - it started straight away no problem? Moved a bit of the sacks of sand and debris from around the skip to make sure the rainwater could flow down the gutter rather than continue to pool into a lake! . . . gave Sally some cheap nasty tasting cornflakes with her breakfast. She seemed to like them until they turned into a mass of glue stuck to the back of the roof of her mouth. Poor old Sally was all nose down on the carpet with both paws raking on her teeth as she tried to dislodge the stuck mess!! Had to rush into her mouth and sort her out with a gentle finger nail. Lesson for the day - never try and eat (cheap) cornflakes without milk. . . left Sally at home with the hosepipe poking out through the letter box and walked to the bus stop around 9am. Bus soon came and was in town by 9:30am. Found a penny. Seen by the eye hospital nurse for my 10am appointment. Uh oh - I felt everything was ok but she confirmed my eye was still VERY rusty and a doctor would have to have a go at removing it!! Could I return around 12:30pm!!! I was at great pains not to complain since I was just SO grateful for their help in sorting out what I couldn't, but I did explain that I'd come on the bus, hadn't brought any money, and would really appreciate it if I could be seen sooner. She told me she'd see what she could do and I should return to wait in around 45 minutes. Walked to a nearby park and sat in a sunny spell squinting through my dark glasses and smoked and waited. A couple of homeless people were still sleeping all wrapped in blankets under a tree. What an existance - although - on reflection, maybe it wouldn't be so bad to be free of having the stress of having to have a new roof and such!! :o\ . . . waited for some time in the crowded waiting room with my eyes shut attempting to meditate away the anxiety I was feeling. Thankfully called in by the doctor some time after 11am. Answered all his mediacl history questions and made the mistake of mentioning the rare disease that caused my uncles blindness. Damned if I know what it's called - all I know is I don't have it cause the skin on my elbows is ok!!!??? . . had to look through the usual contraption as he checked both my eyes and then suddenly without warning did something really horrible to each eye in turn, which felt like he'd popped them out of their eye lids!! Horrible horrible!! That was nothing - he announced with a laugh that he was gonna remove the rust in my eye with a drill. I laughed along with his joke and suggested a wire brush on the end of the drill. Uh oh - he wasn't joking! He produced a miniature hand held drill with some abrasive attachment and started scouring away at my eye within seconds of a squirt of pain killing liquid!!! No matter how much he said "absolutely do NOT move NOW!!" I couldn't help it - mostly because of the blinding light I was instructed to stare into. One of THE most unpleasant experiences I've ever had. Got in a bit of a state - all hot and adrenaline filled with cold sweats - like the start of working up to passing out!! I apologised lots for being such a whimp. A quick scrape with a needle and I was back out to wait for a few minutes before a nurse booked me in for another appointment on Friday and instructed me to keep squirting the opthalmic ointment in there every three hours until then!!! Jeeze - that's a lot of ointment (and SO unpleasant to do - and almost impossible to see afterwards) - I may need more! . . . dashed to the bus and home by around midday to find the roofers hadn't turned up! And it's turned out nice and sunny!! Grrrr. The wind is getting pretty strong!!! . . . grabbed sandwhich and napped for a few hours. Woke myself from a nightmare - (someone was trying to kill me. They tried to hurt Sally. I reluctantly responded with a considered inserting of a knife (the black handled serrated edge one in my kitchen) in their stomach. (Ewwwww!!!!!) I was not going to call for help - they WERE going to die. I asked them what they needed, to make sure it was going to be as 'ok' as it could be for them! ) . . . sat around in dark glasses with a real painful, closing, watering eye. Jeeze - back to square one!! . . . just about to set off walking when I discovered lots of the debris from the skip had been blown all over the street!! Traffic had been driving over it while I slept!!! Dashed around retrieving stuff and piling it up and putting bits of concrete in strategic places in an attempt to stop the strong wind from blowing it around any further! . . . walked in dark glasses - more to keep the wind out of my eye than anything else . . . PCd this with difficulty wearing my suglasses - screen is far too bright no matter which button I press! . . .touched base with BB . . . TVd (with difficulty - both eyes demanding they close!) until bed just after midnight. (3/10)aaa
7 - Woken by Sally around 7am . . . walked in the sunny breeze. Actually rather nice out even if it does feel autumn cold. The calm before the storm? . . . my eye felt surprisingly ok. Couldn't waste the opportunity so managed to muster the energy to do some work on the kitchen. Went without food and manged to put a skim of render over the kitchen alcove. I'm gonna try and shortcut things and get that one wall plastered as soon as possible to enable me to wire up the sockets. That way I'll be able to move the fridge out of the middle of the room and maybe make some more space by perching the microwave on top of it. Gonna be quite a while before I reach that stage . . carried on working and managed to get a layer of damp proof coarse cemented in under some of the bricks at the back of the fireplace. Was particularly careful of my eyes and even wore an old diving mask when doing some grinding out in the garden! I thought one particularly heavy shower was the arrival of the forecast storms but it soon stopped. Had a peek up in the attic and surprisingly couldn't see any trace of water getting in anywhere. Finished up and showered by around 6pm, very satisfied with the day's work. Put some of the ointment in my eye for the fist time today. As suspected it immediately made things worse! . . Had no choice but to do dish washing chores and try and clean away some of the dust in the kitchen before I could attempt to make some food. . . walked . . . cooked up a mass of BLT sandwhiches and finally ate around 8pm . . . touched base with BB . . . PS popped round for chats till early. Bizzarly my eye seemed to get worse with each application of the ointment and I spent much of the evening in great discomfort with both eyes closed! (4/10)as
8 - Woken by Sally before 7am. Still no sign of the really bad weather that's been forecast. . . spoke too soon about how pleased I was all the virus intercepts had stopped. Got around forty this morning!! :o( . . . walked and found 9p . . . roofers turned up just before 9am. :o) . . .balanced my accounts for the first time in about a month and sorted out paperwork and such. Took ages! One good thing - the annual interest on my savings has been paid this month, so that will help with the roofing bill (which I am fully expecting (not including the extra for the skylights) to be far more than the original estimate!!!). Phoned the dental hospital wondering what is happening about my tooth surgery which they said would be about now. Apparantly it'll be more like December!!!! I think the secret plan is, they wait long enough for the tooth to rot away of it's own accord! :o( . . .roofers spent the day putting on the drip strips above the lead and mixing huge amounts of cement and doing the first coat of render on all the walls and chimney stacks. Sure makes it look as though it's getting there. . Still can't understand these builder guys. To try and make things as easy as possible I told them to just cut the old TV aerial down. What I imagined was they would cut the lashings and drop the whole thing intact into the garden for me. Instead of that the whole aerial (there was nothing wrong with it!) was broken into pieces and ended up thrown away on their skip! Only one TV in the house works now - the one connected to the cable. :o( . . Took the opportunity mid afternoon and climbed their ladder up onto the scaffolding just to have a closer look. Wow - they sure have broken loads of the new tiles with all their working up there. One of the guys assured me they would all be replaced when they were finished. Another said they should be all finished tomorrow!!!! Huh? Well - I suspect a builder's 'tomorrow' is another couple of days. They were all gone by around 3pm again. . spent much of the day with the PC running, attempting to download more Windows updates from Microsoft. One large one - the updated media player - which took an hour or more, failed right at the last minute and had to be run all over again!! Grrrr! . . . early evening some guy knocked on the door and asked if he could have the old rafters that were laying in the street next to the skip. Help yourself - but what on earth use are they to anyone? They were all pretty rotten!! . . .walked and found 3p . . . so very tired. Just couldn't face cooking anything and ended up just eating several bowls of cornflakes to stop my stomach gurgling . . . BB called . . . TVd for a bit but was overcome with exhaustion. My bad eye seems to make me feel 'very different' when I get really tired!?? Ended up going to bed before 10pm!!!!!! (4/10)a
9 - Woke around 6am with an awful headache! Think I should have eaten more yesterday . . . walked in the morning sun. I can't believe how lucky I've been with the weather (for the roof) considering the normaly accurate forecasts, which keep saying storms and such. Walked back up and down the street trying to get a feel for how the roof looks and pick out anything I'm not happy with. Looks pretty much ok - I think? How do I know?!! . . roofers turned up around 8:20am! Wow - they DO mean business - and have even come armed with rainwater downpipes so maybe they really are gonna get it pretty much done today? I'll not be surprised if it takes longer. Made them coffee and mentioned the facia on the back of the house which I'm concerned isn't on right (from a cosmetic viewpoint - which DOES matter to me!) . . .PCd a bit. Another hundred or so virus intercepts!! Tried a search on the source (pcp02041240pcs.rtchrd01.md.comcast.net ([68.83.211.199] helo=CP)) and discovered it listed in various firewall activity logs and such!! Even tried phoning comcast pleading for help in stopping it, but only an ansaphone and after all, they have ignored my e-mailed pleas. Spent a ridiculous amount of time sending mails here and there in a pointless one man crusade against all the disgusting porn spam that is sent to the old school website! . . . guy turned up at the door deliverng the parcel BB had said was on it's way - "because I need it!"??? Funny how the guy wanted to tell me all about the muscle he'd pulled in his back and how it affects his breathing and how he's gonna have to go see a doctor and, and - thank you for the parcel, goodbye! Opened BBs surprise from Argos and found an expensive 'Bionaire Air Purifier & Ionizer'!!! Brilliant idea what with all the dust in the house - but - oh dear! I just can't be bought things! I've said it over and over. I'm sure no one can imagine the amounts of dust I'm talking about when I say I made a dusty mess. When I use the disc cutter in the house, I turn the bricks into microscopic pieces of brick dust in the air, the cloud of which is SO thick, it is impossible to see the other side of the room only twelve feet away!! That machine, if I dared to turn it on, wouldn't last a minute. It would be full and suffocate instantly! I need an industrial model like they may have in coal mines!!! Even a vacuum can't cope with what I'm doing - the bags are immediately choked and the machine turns off thinking it's full!! Oh dear - I always seem such an ungrateful b*****d when people try to buy me 'things'! :o( . . . touched base with BB, offered my heartfelt thanks and 'discussed' what I may have to do with it. Either return it or put it in storage until I live in a more normal atmosphere! . . .Early afternoon the skip was taken away. Very surprised there wasn't an argument about the overloading of it, but the driver just wrapped it all over in a tarpaulin and off it went. By 3:30pm the roofers were all finished (except for the front rainwater guttering which can't be fitted until the scaffoldng is down)!!! Fantastic! :o) Ok - so they didn't attend to my concerns about the facia on the back, and the top line of bricks on the chimney stacks should have been re-pointed, and they could have taken the temporary parcel tape off the back chimney, and that tile next to the velux window looks poorly seated, and they've thrown away that vital bit of guttering I use to direct the rainwater out of the downpipe into the bathroom roof gutter, and ,and, and - but I guess I could always find something to complain about. On the whole (although it's hard to see with the scaffolding in the way) it looks like a pretty good job I think. . Whoosh - and they were all gone without a word. So I guess I next see them after the scaffolders have removed the scaffolding - tomorrow maybe? . . .BB called, all down after spontaneously losing the sound on her PC!!? I was no help . . . hosed down outside a little and then peeked up into the loft to see how things looked all battoned down and done. Making a room up there is gonna be a big headache and costly in big supporting timbers, but my word it really needs to be done now the windows are in! Quite a view - and so weird not to have to turn the light on every time I go up there. . . PCd this . . .tried knocking off the bit of cement on the bottom of the chimney pot I wanted removed and which I said I'd keep as a souvenir. Inevitably I broke the pot as I was trying to chip it off. :o( Shame. Dunno why I wanted it though! It isn't as though I'm gonna start growing rhubarb is it! . . . walked . . . TVd until bed around 11pm (4/10)as
10 - Up just after 7am . . . walked . . . spent hours surfing looking at vacuum cleaners and trying to find reviews on different models! How on earth is it possible to ascertain which one will cope best with the abuse I'll give it??. . .not knowing if or when the scaffolders would be arriving, I couldn't face get stuck into anything major. Ended up dabbling with the wall at the bottom of the stairs and fixing and cementing the edging strip to it. That was where BB caught her blouse on a sharp edge the last tme she was here! She has confirmation of her flight back in December ( :o) ), so it seems appropriate to at least get that done to prevent a repeat! I also really want to get the light switch back on the wall there - it irritates me no end having to reach round into the living room to use the temporary switch I've wired in . . . more unpleasantness in the guestbook and feedback from the website didn't help my darkening mood. It's my lack of ability to understand such unpleasant people which gets to me most. Seems to me that, if you get the chance to survive a reasonable length of life, unpleasantness (shit!) will happen to you and everyone you know in generous measure. Life's like that. Why on earth would someone actually seek to cause more? And of course there is that saying - you reap what you sow. I just can't understand such unpleasant people. I may remove the feedback page, start deleting nasty guestbook entries, or maybe even suspend the guestbook all together! . . slept for a few hours . . . some guy called at the door asking for me by name!!?? 'Who's asking?' He said he was from my power company and he had good news - he was there to offer me a cheaper tarrif. Uhu? 'So why didn't you just write to me or send me a cheaper bill in the post?' Waffle waffle waffle. I wasn't in the mood - I told him I didn't have time for this and asked him directly WHAT he wanted. ( I suspected he was trying to get me to change gas supplier.) He replied that he was there to save me money. Idiot. I told him that was enough, thank you very much and I closed the door on him. What an idiot! I straight answer to a direct question would have gotten him a longer stay at my door - and maybe even his desired outcome! . . . got more down and paranoid - felt as though I was surrounded in the world by 'jackals'! . . . walked and sat for a long time over the field wrestling with the desire to escape to somewhere else!? Got home to find the roofers had dropped off their invoice. Nervously opened it expecting the worst. I was 'pleasantly' surprised that the invoice WAS what I'd been given to expect. Whether or not it was a good deal is another matter, but I was SO convinced that it would have somehow ballooned into more, I was quite pleased. 3250 as per the estimate + 4 velux roof windows - fitted @ 1200 + timber and treatment @ 30 - A grand total of 4480. That'll do. :o) Called Terry as requested and was told the scaffolders would be here at the crack of dawn tomorrow. He said his guys would be here later to do the guttering - someone else would pop by to pick up the cheque since he was away for a few days. I said as soon as the guttering was done he could have it! (I can see the guttering thing - that last little sily bit - dragging on for ages!! Vey 'builder-ish'.). . . touched base with BB and talked about vacuum cleaners a bit!! :o) .. . . TVd until around midnight. LB popped down and thrust a couple of packets of thai fish cake things into my hand and rushed straight back to her man!? She seemed all happy and bouncy - apparently he'd bought her a couple of new kittens and brought her collection back up to her 'normal' six!!!!!??(3/10)as
11 - Up with the alarm at 5:45am!! . . . walked as a light drizzle stopped. Found 1.03 :o) . . . just sat in front the PC transfering my savings and writing out the roofers cheque at around 7:20am, and lots of noise indicated the scaffolders had arrived - or at least two of them in a small truck!? Without even announcing their presence they immediately started dismantling the scaffolding out front! :o) 'The lorry'll be along in a minute'. . .the front I didn't watch. The back I did and shouldn't have!!! Jeeze they care little about possible damage!!!!!!! Throwing those poles around and dropping stuff on my bathroom roof like it's the ground! How many spare tiles have I left?? At one point they slid a scaffold pole down against my conservatory roof gutter - and succeeded in dislodging it's mounting from the facia!! It IS true the facia is rotten because of a defective flashing which I haven't got round to sorting out, but they really don't take care those guys! Hopped over into next doors garden and retreived the scaffold foot plates for them, and thankfully they were soon gone. Checked all round the house - not 'too' much damage. A couple of broken tiles, some damage to the soft sandstone bay pillars where it was 'pinched', the dislodged guttering, lots of paint off the walls - got off pretty lightly! . . . Swept all the debris off the bathroom and conservatory roof and hosed down the back of the house. . Swept up and removed all the debris from next doors garden and hosed down their walls and conservatory roof a little. . Had to remove and refix one of the new rainwater downpipe clamps because the roofers hadn't used the right size drill/wall plugs! . . 'Temporarily' refixed the conservatory gutter to the rotten facia by moving the clamp along to some less rotten wood and using a longer screw. .with the fence down, I figured I'd best use the opportunity to have a go at a repair to the garden wall where it meets the bathroom wall. I large crack appeared there some time ago - I suspect the garden wall is moving due to poor (no!) foundations!!! Next door had filled the crack with rubberised mastic! Used the grinder to enlarge the crack and make some slots for a couple of cut down ties. (Need to do the same and re-render on my side but that'll wait.) Not sure if that is advisable or if it'll help - but I can't see how it'll hurt. Cemented it all back up with a unibond cement mix. I figure at worst, if it carries on moving, it'll just pop everything back out again. Just finished cementing and it started to drizzle!!!! Grrrr. Thankfully not much and not for long. . carried on sweeping up debris and tidying up until my bin was full and the patio looked more like normal. Oh it's SO good to have that all done - if only they'd show and finish off the guttering out front!!! . . . at some point the scaffolding stacked in the street was taken away . . . showered, grabbed a sandwhich mid afternoon and then napped for a few hours . . .walked. Sat over the 'crowded with rugby players' field, I could hear a stolen car and a pursuing siren in the distance. Didn't go on for long? Walking back home I came upon crowds of people all rubber necking the accident. A slight detour (I just happen to be walking my dog this way :o) ) and it was evident the stolen car AND the pursuing police car had both crashed - the stolen car into a telegraph pole and someones garden hedge (both airbags deployed) and the police car into a lampost!! An ambulance did turn up but I don't think any of the police were really hurt. Who cares about the others? Not sure if they were caught or not. Do SO hope so! BIG crowd of people all out looking . . .considered the significance of the day on occasions, but I find it too painful to recall all that 9-11 footage I've seen on TV over the last couple of years. Just too painful - it's not right to forget, but I sure can't handle being exposed to too much remembering! :o( . . .PCd this . . . touched base with BB . . PS popped round for chats till early. LB called and wanted to use the PC to put words of condolence on the NCC website guestbook for someone she once knew who dropped dead on a run!! She popped down bearing a couple of thai cakes for the freezer as a thank you! (4/10)as
12 - Up with the alarm at 7am!! . . .walked. Promise on the forecast of a few warm fine days. . .left Sally at home and got the 9:15ish bus into town for 2.20 return and then walked up to the eye hospital. Around a thirty minute wait after my ten o'clock appointment time and then in to see a doctor for another drilled scrub of the rust in my eye!! Arrrrgggghhhhh-ooowwWW!! The good news was he said that 'should' do it and there was no need to make another appointment unless in ten days it was still causing problems. I'll have a permanent flat spot scar on my eye but it 'shouldn't' affect my eyesight!! Dashed for the bus and home before the pain killer ointment wore off. Didn't even go in the house - got straight in the car whilst I was still able and drove to Wickes for cement, plaster, diamond grinding disc and white textured masonary paint supplies. Bit touch and go and rather silly of me - by the time I got home I definitely wasn't in a fit state to drive - and within 30 minutes I was pretty much blind!! Wow - back to square one again!! I guess having that done to your eye every few days is like re-opening a wound. Despite my eye getting worse and worse as the stuff wore off, I managed to hop into next doors garden and get a one eyed coat of paint on yesterdays cemented repair. Hazey sun dried it real quick so I rushed another thick coat on. Started trying to make temporary repairs to the rotten garden fence panel that I had to take down when the scaffolding was put up, but I soon had to call a halt and just go and sit in a dark room with both eyes closed and tears constantly running down my left cheek! Managed to defrost some sausage rolls, ate them cold and then lay down to nap. What else could I do?!! . . . woke in a state but strangely my eye began to feel just a little better as I woke up with coffee and annadin tablet. Managed to get the rotten fence panel back in place above the garden wall. Should see another year if I'm lucky before I need to replace it all. . . walked in dark glasses. Painful and tearful but not 'too' bad - I was worried earlier on that I wouldn't be able to manage the walk!! Stopped for sausage and chips takeaway on the way home . . . PCd this - squinting lots! . . .touched base with BB . . .showered and then spent a while reading up on hernias in the Readers Digest doctors book!!! Hmm? Probably just the sausage and chips! . . . TVd until bed just after 11pm.(4/10)a
13 - Woken by Sally just before 7am. A hot air balloon whizzed by on the breeze as we were waking up with coffee and annadin in the garden and for the first time Sally had a good growl and a bark at it. Shhhhhh!!! . . some difficulty keeping my eyes open!! . . walked and found a penny and a lighter . . .mixed a little cement and unibond and patched up the bay columns where the scaffolding had damaged them and filled the holes where the old downpipe used to be screwed to the wall above the bathroom roof. Put the first coat of rubberised bitumen on the wall end at the bottom of the stairs and along the floor in the kitchen alcove and beneath the stairs. Was just cleaning the brush and using some old newspaper when I spotted an article saying how the local council tip will be on restricted weekend only opening hours for some time and then closed completely for a couple of months!!! Damn!!! Another niggle - gonna make getting rid of all the tons of rubble and rubbish I'm creating rather difficult. Every time I go there, there is a queue - if it's only open on weekends the queue will stretch for miles!! Absolutely guarantees that loads of people will be 'fly tipping' and dumping their rubbish all over the countryside!!!! What madness the council didn't do things differently!! . . . Mixed a little concrete and filled in the gap between the floor and alcove wall in the kitchen. . Put a couple of coats of paint on the cemented repairs outside, once the sun had dried the cement. . spent a while cleaning and oiling the mechanism on the bathroom double glazed window. I figured the dust had made it all stiff, but on closer examintaion it seemed as though maybe something was wrong with it! Seemed to work a 'little' better once I'd oiled it . . .slept for a couple of hours . . . tried the bathroom window again and succeeded in getting the thing stuck closed!! Oh no!!!! It's broken for sure - and I've broken it closed so I can't get to the broken mechanism!!! Damn , damn, damn - if only it had broken open!!! Arrrgggghhhh!!!!. . . walked and found a penny but couldn't get my mind off how the hell I'm gonna deal with that window. Of all the windows in the house, that one is the one that I need to be able to open, to allow all the steam and such out when I have a shower, etc!! . . 'just' managed to open the bathroom window with the minimum of damage to the PVC, by jamming a large screw driver into the broken mechanism and wrenching it round!! Thank goodness I'd oiled it all earlier!! Unscrewed all the mechanism and found that the soft alloy lever/collet mechanism inside, had fractured into several pieces!! Damn!!! I've had these windows for a few years now - bet getting spare parts is gonna be a hassle, if possible at all!! Surely I wont have to replace the whole window just for the sake of a 10p piece of metal!! Seems keeping this house going is a never ending chore of endurance at the moment!! Feeling a bit overwhelmed by it all!! :o( . . . touched base with BB . . . ate a couple of LBs thai cakes with chips . . . TVd till bed around 11:30pm. Woken during the night by loud drunks passing by! (4/10)as
14 - Awake around 7:30am. PCd this . . . walked and found 6p. . . coated the kitchen alcove wall with rubberised bitumen. Did the same to the wiring channel at floor level on the stairs wall in the living room that I've been putting off for months. Probably doesn't actually need it but figured I may as well for consistancy sake. Also blinded with sand the little bit of wall at the bottom of the stairs . . . cemented and managed to get some DPC under most of the bricks of the right hand firebreast pillar in the kitchen . . . napped for an hour or so after a sandwhich . . . walked and found a penny. . . put another coat of rubberised bitumen on the kitchen alcove wall and 'blinded' it with sand ready for plastering . . . BB called . . . TVd/PCd until early. (4/10)as
15 - Woken by Sally around 7:30am. . . walked and found 3p. Carried on walking down to the place where I originaly bought my bathroom window, taking the broken piece in a bag. Turned out that they DO have replacement parts but they are now made as a single unit, so I'd have to replace the entire mechanism rather than just that small piece! Couldn't recall the size of the entire mechanism so had to walk back home and then drive back down to get the one that was 800mm in length. The guy charged me 10 which seemed to be an abitrary decision. Maybe I could have got one cheaper if I'd shopped around, but I was just happy to be able to get the part so didn't quibble. Stopped for petrol (26.01ltrs @ 20) and then drove home and set about fitting it. Decided I'd clean and oil everything before I put it all back in the window frame. The handle in particular was very grimy - seemed like a good idea to use a little of that spray cleaner I've had laying around for ages. Carburrettor cleaner! Bad idea - started 'melting' the paint!! The handle looks a little 'well used' now!!! :o( Put it all back together no problem . . . plastered the kitchen alcove wall and the bit of wall at the bottom of the stairs. Did NOT go well - made a real 'pigs ear' of it all! :o( . . . tried to nap but only managed broken sleep for a couple of hours . . . although of course not dried out, the plaster seemed firm enough to have a go at wiring up the new socket boxes. Racing against the failing light, I managed to hook up the two remaining sockets on the stairs wall in the living room, and the two new sockets in the kitchen alcove. Confirmed that a bit of the existing wire that I'd isolated, was ok, and at last managed to remove my dangerous temporary extension lead 'danger of death' live plug wiring. Yeyyyy - at last! I have a 'proper' reliable ring main again. . . walked after sunset . . . BB called . . . PCd this . . .seems like this major DIY renovation thing is taking up every waking moment and has done for years!! Hardly much point in keeping the journal when every day is pretty much the same - cemented, plastered, walked, blah, blah! I think tomorrow I will cement in the DPC under the last brick on the right hand fireplace pillar and then have the day off! . . .watered the garden. Looks as though every one of the potted fir trees is going brown and on it's way out! . . . TVd till bed around 11pm. (4/10)a
16 - Woken by Sally around 6:30am . . . drove to the river Avon at Hanham for walks. Lovely morning with mist drifting over the river. Misjudged how cold it was, walked in just a shirt, and ended up absolutely frozen. My hands were SO cold they were real painfull! Sally didn't seem to feel it and went in for a swim as usual!! Somewhere along the path I spotted a dead squirrel laying there which Sally had missed!? She saw me looking though and ran up and grabbed it with that sickening crunch of bones that I've heard before! Must be a 'death bite' or something. Got her to drop it and shooed her on. .stopped off at the Wickes DIY store on the way home and bought another six pack of socket boxes (4.25) and double switched sockets (12.69). Dashed into the other nearby store and picked up their leaflets on kitchens to browse through and get ideas. . . did laundry chores. . . cemented the last brick into the right hand firebreast pillar. Actually trying to raise the level of the arch has become another 'mental block' for me because of the construction of the flue and how it supports the old firebreast in the bedroom. I'm not sure I can get the height I want/need (I think there is a safety code of 760mm separation or similar) for having a gas hob under there. Think I need to lay in the new concrete floor under there before I start on that - so I have a good base, in case I need to shore things up!! . . . sat in the sun in the garden until it was shade. Like a summers day - amazing for this time of year! . . PCd but interupted by Sally barking around 4pm? Yayyyyy - at last - the roofers had arrived to finish my rainwater guttering. :o) I actually opened the door to them and cheered! I cheered too soon!! Turns out they thought they'd left the parts they needed to finish it, in a carrier bag in the garden!? I told them they hadn't but despite that, the guy insisted on looking all around and behind the bin and all over!!? They didn't have the parts nor any money to go and buy some, so they'd have to come back some other time!!!!! For goodnesss sake - I'll give you the cheque when it's done!! Fully expecting not to see them for maybe another week, I asked them to put at least some of the guttering in place - my theory being if it rains, half the guttering is better than none. They did as I asked and then said they'd DEFINITELY be here either Wednesday or Thursday! So - I have to make sure I'm around all the time for a couple of days again! Grrrr. When they'd gone I had a look out and found a piece of broken gutter bracket in the garden!? I BET - I just BET they've broken one and when they return they wont have a replacement! Arrrggghhh!!! Instant headache and felt rather down. :o( . . . walked and found a penny. An old lady called out to me, crossed the field and said she'd been trying to catch me!!??? Uh oh!!? Turned out she'd found a neat expensive rubber dogs ball on a rope in the long grass - it was only suitable for a big dog (hers couldn't get it in it's mouth) and she'd asked around but no one had claimed it so she figured it would be good for Sally. Nice one. Did my best polite thank you type person act and made a show of throwing it for Sally all round the field. Didn't seem much point in saying I already had one just the same, which I'd once found hung up in a tree, but I didn't like it cause it was so heavy to carry! :o\. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd until bed around midnight. (4/10)as
17 - Up around 7am . . . walked and found a lighter. Felt rather down . . . REALLY didn't want to have to start cementing or doing anything like it! I'm SICK of all this building stuff!! . . . wasted time sitting around and doing some laundry but couldn't resist eventually turning off the power and wiring up the stairs light switch in it's rightfull position at the bottom of the stairs on the newly plastered wall. Strangely made me somewhat happier and I ended up having a go at chipping off some of the old cement and render from the right hand alcove in the kitchen. I could 'just' get to the bottom of the wall by crawling in next to the washing machine under the worktop!! Soon gonna have to start thinking about moving all that to carry on round the walls!!!!!!????? But how - and still be able to live here!!?? . . the 'light' work of chipping turned into a major job and to cut a long story short, it soon became apparant that with a good bit of hard work, I'd be able to remove and re-cement back in a damp proof course under the entire alcove wall, all in one go - if I was lucky!! . .phone rang mid morning - the dental hospital ringing to say they could fit me in on a cancellation for my 'surgery' on Friday!!!! Oooerr!!!! :o( . . in the middle of the alcove mayhem at around 1:30pm Sally started barking? Heyyy-maybe - the roofer guy was back. I produced the broken piece of bracket and said I hoped he had a replacement with him. He did, but on completion said he couldn't find a broken one to replace, and it must have been a bit of left over rubbish that fell down when they were up there!? I felt SO embarrassed but isnisted on climbing his ladder to have a look with a jug of water in my hand 'just to make sure' that the water ran down and out of the gutter. It did - and all seemed ok. At last, I handed over the cheque. Jokingly I said I wished him no offence but hoped that everything would be ok and I'd never see him again! :o) He let me keep the spare piece of guttering that was left and even handed over a couple of spare gutter mounts. So - there it is - all done and 4480 of life savings the lighter! It looks pretty good - but I guess I won't know for sure until it rains good and hard - with strong winds! . . . by around 5:30pm I'd succeeded in cementing the bricks and DPC into the alcove! Excellent. Very much in a position now, once that has all dried out, to start thinking about pouring in the concrete floor. Yukk!! BIG job. I seem to be almost constantly physically exhausted these days!! I guess I pretty much have put a DPC under 50% of the house now - although in reality it is much more than that because of all the complications with this side of the house, what with all the firebreasts and relaying of floors and all. The long wall on the other side of the house is just a straight wall - 'relatively' easy in comparison with the nightmares I've already faced. . .dropped a roofers business card into the lady next door who said she wanted a quote for her kitchen roof! If they do it, I DO hope they are real careful with their cigarette ends on my conservatory roof!! Worry, worry! . . . walked carryng a heavy ball. Stopped off at the store for milk and incredibly recognised a guy from my postman days - who I don't think I ever actually even spoke to back then - um - twenty years ago was it?!! He eventually got the sack apparantly - he told me all about it at GREAT length! said he was now self employed! He smelled like beer - he was buying beer - he drove away in a taxi! Don't think I'd be too happy if I called a cab and he turned up like that! . . . PCd this - BB called just as I was about to finish so I said I'd call her back. I ended up not calling her back for about half an hour!! Tried uploading my journal like usual, and all I succeeded in getting, was my journal deleted!!?? Tried again several times, tried deleting stuff, uploading smaller stuff etc etc but nothing seemed to work!! Eventually in desperation I called the help line and they confirmed (eventually - after a bit of unpleasantness where they asked for my password and I refused to give it to them!) that I'd gone over my webspace limit!!! I was well over twenty megabytes!!! Wow - I thought that 'may' be it. I guess if I used a proper FTP program I'd have realised - can't tell with just using explorer. . . grabbed a bite to eat real late and then set about trying to move some of the bulkier stuff like the videos and silly midi collection, onto my cable webspace, just to keep things up and running for the meantime. Loathed to split stuff up like that cause it gets real complicated remembering what is where, but it'll have to do until I have time to rethink what is where - anmd what is actually ripe for deletion. The whole site is SO badly in need of an overhall. Much is no longer representative of who I may have become of late. . . touched base with BB before bed, absolutely asleep on my feet around 1:30am!! (4/10)a
18 - Woken by Sally around 7:30am . . . walked and found a penny . . .felt real tired and headachey and ended up just sat in front the TV watching daytime nonsense for ages. Eventually gave up the struggle to stay awake and went to lay down for a bit. Woke around 2:30pm!!!! . . . BB called . . . summoned up the energy, finally tried to make a decision, and drove with the bionaire thingy to Argos to attempt to exchange it for a new vacuum cleaner. The woman had to make phone calls and check this and that but in the end there wasn't a problem. The vacuum was actually 10 or so cheaper than the bionaire so I had to have a gift voucher back as well, and because I didn't have the odd penny difference, even made a penny into the bargain! The woman warned me that if they didn't have that model vacuum they'd give me one 'equivalent', which was scary seeing as how I'd agonised for SO long over which one to buy! The minute I'd turned round and gone to the collection point it was there already waiting for me - exactly the one I wanted, and even in black! Perfect. :o) Hitachi Vaccum(Reference #HI-CV820). 1400W Motor (Suction Power 260W) Bagless (no paperbag required) Complete with On-Board Tools Washable Cloth Filter for Optimum Filtration, 4.5 Litre Dust Capacity, Cord Rewind, Dust Bag Full Indicator, Dual Purpose Cleaning Head, Extendable Metal Tubes. . detoured on the drive home and checked out the council tip. Sure enough it was shut with signs up saying restricted opening hours on the weekend only!! Drove home and unpacked the vacuum, read the instructions and then gave a 'clean' bit of the living room carpet a quick going over. Blimey - sure sucks ok for a cheap little thing and WOW was that carpet dirty and dustier than I thought!! Loads of dog hair and dust. The beauty of that machine to me is the fact it doesn't need any 'replenishable consumables'. There is an integral cloth bag and washable filter. Only drawback is how dusty you get shaking the mess out into your bin - but I can live with that. At vacuum bags around a a throw or thereabouts, by the time I'd finished testing just a little bit of this carpet and a walkway across that room, I'd saved 5!!! Emptied that bag five times!! Guess this place must be dustier/hairier than I imagined!!! . . rang BB so she could talk to the vacuum! :o) . . . cooked up a big double sausage, egg and chips meal . . . walked. Damn!! For the second time in the last few days, I've returned home from the walk to find the stereo has somehow been turned on!!?? Something somehow is trigging the remote sensor I think?????. . .washed the dishes and cleaned up the kitchen a little . . . PCd this . . . BB called . . . PS popped round for chats till early . . .sleep patterns seem to be all over the place - couldn't sleep and TVd/PCd until around 4:30am!!! (4/10)as
19 - Woke around 7:30am!!? . . .walked and found 7p . . . TVd before setting the alarm and trying to catch up on lost sleep. Only managed maybe an hour before being woken by lots of hammering and such from next door. I think it woke me cause in my sleep my mind scared me into thinking the roofers were back taking off my roof!? Ended up whiling away the time until my 3pm dental appointment . . . cut my hair . . . cooked up a large cheeseburger lunch - doubt I'll be in a fit state to eat much more than soup later . . . walked to the bus stop and got the 2.20 return into Broadmead just after 2am. Stopped in a small park for a cigarette and then walked to the dental hospital (training school) which is right next to the eye hospital - all very familiar territory of late!! My eye is much better but still seems to have a bit of trouble focusing - particularly on print! . . . according to my watch I was summoned from the waiting room at about two minutes to three!! Incredible! Actually on time and not having to sit and wait for ages. :o) A young student girl had drawn the short straw. She was very good and readily put up with my terrible nervous behaviour and warnings that since I was a phlegm laden smoker, if I called time out she should get out of my mouth REAL quick or else I'd be involuntarily biting and choking!! Eeewwww!! I think it was three injections in the end. She consulted several times with her supervisor and they agreed they'd try and pull out the tooth without having to resort to surgery on the gum if at all possible. If the tooth broke into pieces they'd have to cut and stitch!! They both had goes in my mouth - and sometimes both at once - in between me calling lots of halts to feel a bit ill as I tried to swallow away what was starting to choke me. Hard to swallow when it feels as though your deadend tongue is 'lolling' about on the floor somewhere!! Funny how the student tried SO hard to hide her blood stained gloves when she saw my eyes widen and follow them when I saw them. It ended up being the supervisor who finally managed to pull out the tooth in one piece - kinda surprised her and it shot across onto the floor! Great big bloody thing it was! I immediately felt REALLY unwell!! I wonder if with age I am starting to take on the fainting characteristics my Dad had. I felt sick, I felt SO hot, then I felt very cold, I was wringing with sweat - god I was near to passing out! What a whimp! Took a while to recover kinda sat bent over resting on my knees - I think it's right to have your head down when you get like that isn't it? Certainly helps keep your rising stomach in place at least! I was given an information leaflet all about after care, told not to smoke (which of course is imediately ignored once survived and outside!), given some swabs to bite on if the bleeding gets too bad and that was pretty much that. I offered sincere thanks and apologies for all the blood! There was blood on the students hands, on the chair arm, on the overhead light, on the floor - ewwww!!!!! . . .all over in around 40 minutes and walking back to the bus stop. A fifteen minute wait for the bus and then a long slow 40 minute ride home, occasionaly checking that I wasn't unknowingly dribbling from my frozen lip. . . amazing nose Sally has. She homed in and sniffed at my eye when we 'greeted' after I'd been to the eye hospital. She sniffed 'caringly' at my mouth today. :o) . . . managed a coffee and cigarette before setting the alarm and laying down to sleep . . . woke just after 7pm . . . BB called but I wasn't awake enough to talk. The anaesthetic was wearing off and I took her advice and quickly swallowed an annadin tablet . . .damn - around 7:30pm the stereo was on of it's own accord again!!??? Dashed next door and asked if they had just turned something on or if they had a new remote something, etc. The answer was no but it seemed like a real coincedence to me that just then he'd had trouble with his cable TV box and had just rebooted it - I was watching the Simpsons at the time and mine was fine. Hmmm? Very suspect - if it isn't that, then maybe I need to keep an eye on when the street light opposite goes on? Very weird/unsettling . . . walked in the dark and found a penny . . . PCd this with a sore slightly bloody mouth . . .touched base with BB . . . ate a couple of bowls of soft gooey microwave oats . . . TVd until around 12:30am. (4/10)as
20 - Woken by Sally just before 6am!!? Opened the door to the garden and then managed to go back to sleep for another hour or so . . .walked in the mist and found 5p . . .ended up going back to sleep mid morning and sleeping through till around 1:30pm! . . . TVd . . . set off around 3pm and walked Sally down to Eastville Park, along the Frome Valley walk and into Vassals Park. Crossing the local field, in the distance it appeared as though a policeman was having words with moped riders on the cycle path. When he’d finished talking with them he made them all walk their bikes out of the field. Yayy. :o) About time! I hope he issued ‘documents producers’ to every one of them! Found 2p. Really unusually amazing weather for this time of year - too hot in just a T shirt! Treated myself to a raspberry split ice lolly in Vassals. Wow - they used to be SO much better than that! :o\ . . . back home around 6pm, figured that was 'just' late enough not to have to walk Sally again later. . LB stopped by briefly and announced she'd spent lots of her re-mortgage on new kitchen appliances that morning and I could have her old gas stove tomorrow. Not good timing for me at all but I said yes please. Guess it'll have to just sit around in the kitchen somewhere until I get round to getting a gas man in to tackle replacing the old lead gas main throughout the house and relocating the cooker outlet to the new fireplace position!! That's all a LONG way off!! Damn - knew I should have started working on relaying that bit of the concrete floor today instead of just sleeping and walking and sitting around! . . . the stereo turned itself on again at, according to my watch, 7:24pm - so it isn't the street light then, which was on earlier than that!!????? . . . settled down to watch what I expected would be a good old western with James Stewart and Henry Fonda ('Firecreek' I think it was called) but oh what a BLEAK film it turned out to be!! Very depressing - and yes I DID identify with all those townsfolk who'd thrown their lives away in exchange for 'safety'!!! :o( . . . BB called to touch base . . . TVd until bed before 11pm but soon roused to look out the window to see what the noise was. How come people are letting off fireworks every day (night!!) of the year now? Grrrr!! I remember when I was a kid - they used to warn everyone on one 'Blue Peter' kids show each year, to keep your pets indoors on bonfire night because it was so dangerous and they'd be frightened by all the noise and explosions! Things have changed. :o( (4/10)s
21 - Up around 7:30am . . . walked in the cool . . . PCd this . . .started the long job of excavating and preparing the kitchen fireplace for a concrete floor 'pour'! Hardest part is working out how many bags of concrete to buy!!??? I think it is SO many it would be cheaper buying bags of cement, sand and chippings, but that is even harder to work out right! . . .left Sally at home and drove to Wickes and bought nine sacks of concrete! Figured I'd buy more than that but I'd do it in two trips so as not to end up with a boken car wioth all that weight in the back. Drove home and unloaded. LB passed by and said the cooker thing was off until all her new stuff was delivered on Tuesday. Good - gives me a chance to get the floor done and make some space for it! . . piled all the sacks of concrete in the fireplace trying to judge how many I need and then drove back to Wickes for just another three sacks . . .moved the big pile of bricks to the other side of the patio to give me a large concrete mixing area and then carried all the sacks of concrete out and stacked them up ready in the garden. Figured I'd mix up eight to start with. Spent ages preparing the fireplace excavation and putting in the big plastic sheet of DPC trying to get as good a join with the existing as possible. . emptied eight sacks into a huge heap and started the big mxing with my shovel. Hard work. Real hard work! Lots of back ache - very hard to straighten up. Eventually rushed bucket loads of concrete into the kitchen and dumped them all into the hole. Very difficult getting an acceptable 'flat and level' since the floors aren't level anyway!! It'll have to do! Troweled and 'tamped' lots! SO annoying to get a nice smooth surface only for drips of sweat to fall from my nose and make a little dent in the surface!! . . just reached a point where I figured it would have to do and the door bell went! LB appeared bearing a HUGE plate of roast dinner (piled up at least five inches high off the plate!!) and a tub of the same for Sally. Excellent, excellent, thank you, thank you! What brilliant timing. I'll SO need a decent feed later. I may have brick dust in the scales but they seem to be showing that I've lost weight again - down to under 140lbs!!! . . the eight bags of concrete was 'almost' exactly right - mixed up a small bowl of cement to finish off the floor gap along the alcve. . barricaded the work area with boxes and ladders and stuff to keep Sally from walking on the concrete while it cures, and then cleared up and hosed down all my tools out on the patio. Done and showered by around 6pm . . . LB called wanting to talk lots about al her new appliance purchases due to be delivered on Tuesday. She and her man had already disconnected the washing machine . . . just about to walk and LB appeared at the door with a large cloth covered container containing a frog, saved from her cats! Quickly relocated it to the pond . . . walked very tired and achey . . .the stereo was on again when I returned - on and on a radio channel!? So not only does it turn itself on, but it also goes to a different input selection!??? . . . ate LBs meal and fed Sally hers. Wow - what a feast. Took ages to eat and had to be microwaved again half way through because of all those damn horrible little black pepper things she puts in - had to locate and remove every one! . . .BB called . . . spent a while reading the manual and messing with the stereo but I really can't see that the timer is doing what is happening!?? Maybe it's actually just broken? :o( . . . Drunken LB called yet again panicing over her disconnected washing machine pipes which were leaking (lots) all over her bathroom. Her man was off somewhere looking for some part or other. Dashed up and simply pushed the leaking pipe down into the waste pipe as a temporary (rather obvious I thought) solution for her . . . TVd but oh SO tired and achey. To bed before 11pm. That was a good days work! (4/10)
22 - Up around 6:30am . . .PCd this . . .walked and got soaked by an unexpected rain shower. Returned home to find the stereo on, playing a CD!!! Aha - I changed the clock and messed with the settings yesterday, so that proves it MUST be something to do with the timer and nothing external. So how on earth do I deactivate that damn timer?? Ended up just turning the power off - seemed to do the trick. . . left Sally at home and drove to Lidl at Hanham to shop . . .walked with Sally up to Kingswood and shopped some more. Found 3p . . .a couple of BIG rain showers - first proper torrential rain in ages. Had a look around up in the attic and everything seeemd ok. That’s more than can be said for where the main roof guttering leads down into the bathroom gutter. Rain was spilling out and over! That little piece I put up there that the roofers threw away, wasn’t there for no reason! I’m gonna have to try and make up something to replace it. With hindsight I guess I should have got the roofers to put the new rainwater down pipe in a slightly different place, along a bit, so I could have run it straight down into the top of the bathroom roof down pipe. Oh well – that’ll be something to do in the future – not too difficult. . . cooked up a sausage and chips lunch and fell asleep for a couple of hours . . . cleared up the mess in the kitchen a little and stacked the microwave on top of the fridge and pushed it out of the middle of the room, where it's been for weeks, and temporarily into the alcove. Very nice to have a bit more space at last. Lots of vacuuming - lost count of the number of times I emptied the bag, full of dust and rubble! . . . walked and found 20p in small change all over the place. So much in fact that it was actually embarassing stooping down and picking it up every few paces. Even activated the pedestrian controlled crossing traffic lights to stop the traffic so I could retrieve some from the road! . . . washed dishes and returned the couple to LB . . .touched base with BB . . .cooked up some BLT sandwhiches and TVd the evening away, feeling rather content, thanks to being able to actually walk unhindered across the kitchen for the first time in a while. . . wanted the feeling to last and didn't go to bed until after 3am. (5/10)s
23 - Up around 7:30am feeling headachey and tired . . .received an e-mail entitled ‘copyright infridgement’ referring to some of the AvPD stuff. (Did I? Probably. Can't remember.) Well – yeah – like my disclaimer says, ‘In desperation at the fragmented lack of information available on Avoidant Personality Disorder, these pages are a personal collection of other peoples work, obtained from various sources on the Internet and elsewhere, with complete disregard to copyright and accreditation. "I have gathered a posy of other men’s flowers, and nothing but the thread that binds them is mine own." On reflection – since the collection of information is a description of a personality disorder, seems pretty weird to think it should be copyright – owned by someone! Am 'I' so owned?! Oh dear. :o\ . . . walked and found a penny. Clear sky and autumn sunny, but wow is it colder than of late - coat and gloves cold. . . did laundry . . . PCd this . . .tried to go back to sleep but couldn't! . . . ended up getting back up and despite my awful headache had a go at starting to repair the hole in the bedroom ceiling. Spent ages up in the attic sweeping up loads of dust and debris and even took the vacuum cleaner up there! Removed two sacks full of rubble, dust and rubbish. Filthy business! Why is the attic full of what appears to be coal dust?!! . .Unibonded the ceiling hole and then filled it with plaster. That's the easy bit - the hard bit of adding another layer and cosmetically trying to match it with the existing ceiling pattern can wait. . spent a rediculous amount of time messing around with some old TV aerials up in the attic, but no matter what I tried I couldn't get a decent picture on any of the TVs. Amazing how much difference six feet in height and being behind a brick wall can make! . . . ate and slept for a couple of hours but woke with an even worse headache?!!!!! . . .LB called to say I couldn't have the cooker today after all. The delivery of all her new stuff had been postponed with some excuse about the van having broken down. Weird how I suspected that something like that would happen. Why is it these days that every time someone makes an appointment or schedules a delivery time or something similar, you can absolutely guarantee it won't happen, and they excuse themselves with lies? How on earth did that become acceptable?!! Little winds me up more! . . . walked and found 10p . . . touched base with BB as my headache started to ease. Weird how such headaches usualy miraculously fade away early evening. . .LB called - dashed up to appropriately admire her new expensive kingsize bed her man had just screwed together, and to pick up the pair of stereo speakers she didn't want . . . TVd until early. . .PCd this until early. Surfed a bit looking at AvPD sites - there seem to be more than there used to be. (3/10)a
24 - Woken around 7:30am by the sounds of people going to work . . . walked and found 5p . . . started working on the kitchen fireplace around 10am. Excavated a couple of bricks out of the middle of the firebreast so I could look in and see what I was facing and then ended up just sitting looking at it for at least an hour or so, trying to figure out how the hell I can raise the arch without a major collapse!!! Kinda like a chinese puzzle - so, if I remove THAT brick - no, no - how about THAT brick - no - etc, etc, for ages!!! Was very nearly on my way to buy a lintel but then figured what the hell, hammered in a piece of angle iron between brick courses as a temporary (not really strong enough!!) support, and had a go at it. Had to use the disc cutter lots, effectively 'carving out' a place for a new arch - thick layers of dust all over the kitchen and somehow getting into every cupboard!! Shut Sally and her food and water bowls out in the living room for much of the day - she was sick at one point!!!? The construction of the chimney throat dictated I couldn't get the arch as high as I'd wanted!!! Removing one of the bricks, I opened up what turns out to be a 'void' in the firebreast walls which was filled with what appeared to be small pieces of coke or coal or a similar sort of loose debris!!??? Started pouring out!!!!!!!! Stuffed up the hole with a scrap piece of plastic real quick to stop the outpouring, just in case that 'fill' is somehow supporting something up higher. Just amazes me how this house was built! Should never have been allowed! . . worked on through until, sometime late in the afternoon, I'd removed the old arch and was ready to start trying to build the new one. Used the rotten wooden door frame from the old understairs cupboard doorway that I'd been saving for the purpose, to make up an arch support/former. It was getting real late but I was absolutely determined to get that arch roughed in today - rushed around like a mad thing, with poor Sally all ears down forcibly told to stay out of the way in the garden! . . cleaned and wire brushed the bricks, mixed cement, and eventually managed to get the arch cemented roughly in place. The opening from the floor to the middle of the arch turned out to be 64 inches - at least a foot higher would have been preferable, but then again it IS a firebreast - can't see it being too seriously affected by the heat from a cooker or hob which I eventually plan to instal beneath. Lots more work needed to tidy and firm it all up, and make good the damaged bricks where the original arch used to be, but must resist touching it until that cement has nicely hardened or the whole lot could come tumbling down! . . the kitchen was too much of a mess to even consider trying to clean it up, so I made a space where the kettle and coffee are and left the layers of dust everywhere else. Showered and collapsed by 8pm. That was a hard days work! . . . walked in the starry dark and stopped for sausage and chips on the way home . . . touched base with BB . . . exhausted in bed by 11pm. (4/10)
25 - Up around 8am . . . walked. Had a furtive look in a skip outside a nearby house on the way back. Couldn’t resist removing a broom head that had been thrown away because the handle had broken. Gonna have to ask whoevers it is if I can put some rubble in there. This ‘council tip closed’ business is really a pain! I’ve already identified a piece of the field where I walk that would benefit from some rubble (in fact lots more than I will create) , but I’m not sure I dare!. . .PCd this . . . managed to fit an old brush handle to the thrown away head - nice one - much better than the old one I've been using, the brushes of which have almost all fallen out! I just LOVE getting stuff for nothing except the effort. :o) . . . spent the morning with the disc cutter in the kitchen, grinding back some of the protruding bricks beneath the new arch in the fireplace - couldn’t see any other way to do it. Incredible amounts of dust – so thick I couldn’t even see my feet!!!! The finest particles of dust somehow hung in the air, and wherever there was air there was soon dust, right throughout the house - EVERYWHERE!!! Finished grinding early afternoon and then spent the rest of the day trying to clean up some of the mess. Made full use of the new vacuum cleaner, but it wasn’t happy being abused like that. So choking was the dust, that it could only manage less than a square yard at a time before thinking it was full and needing a good shake out, out on the patio!! I lost count of the number of times I had to do that. It was lots!! Next door had washing out on the line!! . . gave up the battle, showered and grabbed a sandwich around 5pm . . . BB called. . . lay down for a nap but the phone rang. LB wanting to know if I had any PTFE tape because she had help putting in her new gas oven. Popped up with some tape but in the end it wasn’t used because the cooker gas pipe appeared to be a weird ‘just slot it in’ bayonet fitting. I kept pretty much out of the way because I really don’t think messing with gas is a good idea. They tested the joins with some washing up liquid and I had a good sniff and as far as we could tell it was all ok! The guy helped me carry LBs old cooker down and put it in my kitchen. If I can fix the broken handle I guess it’s better than mine, although I’m not sure I really want to go to the bother of swapping them, in the full knowledge that in the future, once I’ve finished all my building works, I want a separate hob and oven and intend to have someone in to replace all the house gas pipes. More ’big stuff’ cluttering up the place!! :o( . . showers forecast maybe for tomorrow - cut a short section of spare rainwater downpipe and put it in the end of the new bit running across the bathroom roof, to try and lead the rain water into the bathroom guttering without spilling over like it did the other day! Next door was out in their garden and I embarrassingly admitted I was a fool and that my stereo going on, was nothing to do with them and was just the timer! . . . walked. . . vacuumed my bed! . . . PS popped round for chats till early. . . BB called . . .to dusty bed around 1am. (4/10)s
26 - Woken by Sally around 7:30am . . . walked . . .stuck a bit of temporary stick on flashing over the rotten end of the conservatory facia wood, just to try and keep the rain out for a while longer. .messed around in the conservatory trying to clear up some of the mountains of stuff I’ve dumped there which is all now covered in dust!! . . popped up the road and knocked on the door of the house which had the skip outside, to ask if I could put some sacks of rubble in it. Turned out it was hired by the house next door and the guy wasn’t in, so I figured I’d try calling again later. Within five minutes the damn thing was picked up and taken away! Damn! And it was half empty – I could have cleared out loads of rubbish from all over the house! Damn, damn, damn - that'll teach me to be polite and ask first! :o( . . . PCd this . . . pottered around for most of the day clearing up this and that as the washing machine did load after load . . .PCd . . . walked and found 2p . . .touched base with BB . . . TVd until bed around 11pm . . . woken by Sally and some noise in the street around 3am, but by the time I reached the window it was all quiet again - maybe a taxi dropping off loud drunks? Robert Palmer died this day. (3/10)
27 - Woken by Sally around 6:45am!! . . . walked . . .dabbled with the kitchen fireplace and removed the angle iron support and wood former. The arch stayed in place so I guess it'll do, although it isn't 'quite' as succesful as the one in the living room - yet. LOTS more difficult work to do on it to try and move the exposed 'throat' up and get it out of sight inside the arch. Cut up some angled brick shapes with the disc cutter out on the patio and cemented up the gap above the arch, rejoining it to the rest of the firebreast as a proper supporting member. Started the long, bit by bit cosmetic process of cementing up the rough bricks where the arch had been before. Some time mid morning, somewhere in the neighbourhood the practicing rock band started up!! SO loud! SO incredibly loud, I could hear it over my radio in the kitchen!! That's more than inconsiderate - that's showing utter contempt for everyone around! Grrrr. . . showered and cooked up a pizza mid afternoon and then managed to sleep for a couple of hours, despite the band noise - wasn't quite so bad with the double glazed window closed and the hood on my fleece up around my ears! . . woke around 6pm and the band were STILL practicing!! . . . walked . . . popped up LBs and removed the transit bolts and packaging from her new washing machine, which they'd forgotten to do the other day. She'd done a wash and the machine had started moving around the room as a result!! lol Came back with a couple of chicken breasts she said she wouldn't be eating. . . touched base with BB . . . TVd till around 11:30pm. (5/10)as
28 - Up around 6:45am again!! . . . Received yet more unpleasant upsetting feedback from the site – “How could you have that beautiful innocent loyal devoted friend put to sleep in 1986.Humans are the biggest and only bastards on the planet.Animals are victims and ir fucking shits me........ MEGA.One can only hope you live your Karma.....like all those other self obsessed pricks,.... from an animal lover and fellow kings wood ite” Difficult to ignore this one. I’ve never typed up and included on the site the full details of what lead to me having Sheba put to sleep. It was too painful for me. I accept FULL responsibility. The series of relevant events culminated in Sheba chasing after a little girl in a local pub beer garden and biting her on the body, so hard that her skin was broken beneath her clothes. There was a ‘scene’ with irate parents from which we managed to escape, before things got ‘too’ ugly. That was the last straw. I don’t need anyone telling me how rotten I’ve been – I’m better at doing that than anyone. Live my karma? Oh but of course I do – every single day! Sally too. “Humans are the biggest and only bastards on the planet.”? Oh how I agree – but don’t forget, we are all human!! . . what on earth could be the motive for such feedback? . . walked. Found another old style cycle dumped on the grass. The frame appeared bent, almost as though someone had ridden at speed straight into the nearby bollards!!? Funny thing though on closer examination, was that the front light ('Cateye') was still on it complete with the batteries. Seemed reasonable to have that. The front one came off real easy. The matching back one was missing half the unit, but as I suspected it may be, a quick search of the nearby long grass found it and the batteries, and it worked fine. It was a bit of a struggle to remove the mounting part that was attached to the seat stem, but it soon became apparent the seat was loose anyway, so I ended up having that as well!! 'ISCA Soft' seat - looks softer than the one on my bike. . carried on walking round the field with my pockets bulging but got a bit wound up and all guilty about having a 'looting' frenzy like that, so on the way out of the field I stopped and had a good look at the bike again to see if there was any postcode stamped on the frame anywhere (would've been kinda fun to track down the owner and return it) but there was no sign of any. I'm not sure I'll ever be riding my cycle again, but if I'm gonna have it hanging round the house just in case, it may as well be all kitted out with a nice seat and lights. Funny start to the day. Nice one - although - wonder if maybe someone was hurt in an accident?!!! . . . PCd this . . . worked on the kitchen fireplace and managed to sort out the left hand pillar and move the 'throat' up and out of sight behind the arch. The right hand side is gonna be much more difficult!! Finished up by around 5pm before grabbing a sandwhich . . . walked. Surprisingly the dumped cycle was gone! Made me rather uneasy and even more guilty about my ‘looting’! I think I may have done the wrong thing today! :o(. . . touched base with BB . . . PS popped round for chats till early. (4/10)s
29 - Woken by Sally around 8am. Waited until 8:30am and then eventually managed to get through on the doctors ‘appointments’ number and got an 11:30 appointment. . . walked. Another burned out car next to the field. Unusually it appeared to have had several of the body panels removed prior to it being torched? . . . made sure the car started, showered, covered myself in deodorant and aftershave, and sat around waiting for my doctors appointment. Left Sally at home and drove the short distance to the surgery, and arrived around 11:20. Anxiously all up tight, waited in the waiting room until around midday!! When my name was finally called on the intercom the doctor got it wrong and asked for Terry ‘Lloyd’! Shivery feeling up my back – reminded me of Dad and all those doctors and nurses using his real first name, after years of being known by his second name. I explained why I was there and had an embarrassing trousers down, cough – cough again examination! The doctor confirmed that I DID appear to have a hernia, although he did seem somewhat ‘intrigued’ by the unusual length of the protrusion!!!!!!!!!!!! He would write to the local Cosham hospital and they would contact me with an appointment for further examination. Surgery would be likely, maybe within a couple of months, carried out at Frenchay, requiring maybe a day or two in hospital – perhaps longer since I live alone! SHIIIIIIIT!!!!!!!! As I was leaving he asked how I was doing with regard to my other 'stuff', the prozac and all. I clumsily explained briefly why I'd stopped taking them - I wanted to experience my fathers death 'with my own mind'!! Said thank you's and goodbyes and left, but then dashed back in and asked how I should be treating myself prior to having this all sorted. He said no extreme exertion or heavy lifting, but otherwise nothing to be done. .back home I ended up getting a bit tearful for a bit. SO much more yet to do on the house renovation project and I'm not gonna be in a fit state to do it! So weird how all the while I've been doing it, I felt as though I was racing against the clock - trying to get it done before I broke!! And foremost in my mind and most important of all - what about Sally?!!!!! Guess I'm gonna have to start looking at finding suitable kennels for when I'm in hospital and unable to walk her afterwards - and for how long?!!!!!!! Wonder if it's time to regret not having pet insurance?! It'll be the first time we've been seperated since I've had her! I can hardly bear the thought - if only I could explain to her! :o( And then there's BBs visit in December!! What sort of a state am I gonna be in?!!! . . The recent re-roofing experience has shown me that I am deluded in thinking I’m ‘doing ok’ with my avoidant stuff. Safely hiding away in solitude, avoiding everything, doing my DIY stuff, IS ok, but woe betide me when I have to actually encounter the outside world and the people in it, and be at their mercy. I wont accept that I have panic attacks, but damn I come close – when the roofers were here, and just sat waiting in the doctors surgery this morning, two reminders! How on earth am I gonna deal with being stuck in a hospital bed all hurting?!! And now, somewhere in my mind, is the sickening association between doctors and all things hospital, and the slow, humiliating walk to death of my father (who incidentaly had a strangulated hernia when younger!). I have vowed never to follow in THOSE footsteps! For someone who has spent so much of his life having suicidal ideation, it is ironic how fearful I now am of undergoing any sort of hospitalisation or surgery/anaesthetic, with the inherent risk to life. I even dabbled with the idea of walking up Kingswood to have a will prepared, but didn't, since I'm no longer sure who I think should benefit from my eventual passing! I SO need to clear up and throw out loads of stuff from the house! . . with such thoughts and feelings, the afternoon was quite a trip! :o( . . . PCd and looked up hernias! Eeeeww!!! I guess it's an 'Inguinal Hernia' - on the left side. Despite all the heavy lifting work I've been doing of late, my 'gut feeling' (ha, ha!) is that mine was caused by coughing. Smokers cough! Payback time!! Or maybe "One can only hope you live your Karma"? lol :o( . . . managed to fall asleep on the second time of trying, after some food. Funny how now it’s been diagnosed, I am much more aware of the minor discomfort it’s causing – or maybe the doctor’s prodding has made it a little tender?. . ignored the doorbell and Sally barking . . . woke around 7:30pm by the ansaphone taking a call. Dark already!! IHB leaving a message - I'm not in the mood to be talking to anyone I'm afraid! . . . walked . . . BB called . . . TVd till late . . PCd this. (3/10)s
30 - Up around 7am . . . walked and found 2p. . . skipped breakfast and started working on the kitchen firebreast. Made some progress on the right hand throat and managed to cement back in, half the bricks to do the job, pushing the protrusion back up behind the new arch. Simple job made so, SO difficult by all that debris in the void trying to come pouring out!! Ended up stuffing old sheets and towels into the hole to stop the outpuring as a temporary measure! Dunno how I'm gonna be able to cement in the last couple of bricks because of that!?! Lots more disc cutting and layers of dust everywhere!!!. . skipped lunch and carried on working. Drilled out some of the dust render between all the bricks on the face of the firebreast and started the long laborious job of repointing/refacing the whole thing, to make it look like what I ended up with in the living room. Terry's custom, 'cement wash' effect! Tidied up and showered around 6pm. . . walked and found 2p. Stopped off for milk and then sausage and chips takeaway on the way home. . .BB called . . . TVd till bed around 11pm all achey and tired. (4/10)s
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