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1 - Up late after 8am . . .walked . . sat in the garden and attended to a couple of the 'dings' on a couple of floorboards, cutting out the really bad pieces and gluing in patches! Think I'll be having a 'day off' today. I'm aching real bad, feel pretty exhausted, and my right hand is a bit swollen (!!?) from all that holding onto the wire brush while scrubbing the floorboards!! . . Mum called in with the paper and food donations for coffee and chats for a couple of hours . . ate Mum donated ham rolls with crisps and some chocolate . . napped. Didn't wake until gone 7pm!! . . walked - with a pair of mole grips in my back pocket! One of the expensive houses I pass every time I walk, has put a (perfectly good looking - white) toilet out in their yard with a bunch of other stuff near their bins, as if they are going to be throwing it away. There is a white toilet seat on the toilet. If it's being thrown away and if it's not broken - that would be a perfectly acceptable replacement for the awful, thick, dark wood and corroded brass fittings one, I inherited with the house. Called at the house in the dwindling light on the way back from the walk. A woman in a bath robe eventually came to the window (she'd just got out of the shower apparantly!). Doing my best 'I'm terribly sorry to bother you', Mr. Nice guy act., I asked about the toilet seat. It WAS being thrown away, and as is often the way with 'older' people (who've known hardship the like of which is now little known) , she seemed delighted that someone could make use of any of it, and gave me permission to have it. So - I had to walk all the way back home trying to hide someones toilet seat under my arm. lolol He who dares? :o) Quickly replaced my grotty wooden seat and then gave everything a good clean. Wow does that look better. Plain and simple white. On VERY close inspection, it does look as though there is a hairline fracture developing, but it's still better than what I've replaced. It can at least be kept clean. Very pleased. One less thing. .TVd but once again, ended up listening to rock music radio channels. My current favourite is 'Arrow Radio', Sky channel 0161. Good old classic rock (and at 11 o'clock on a Saturday night, interspersed with classic comedy extracts - which seems a bizarre but actually highly acceptable mix, particularly for a Saturday night. I even had to phone PS rather late, to tell him to check it out.). Hardly ever a track not worth listening to, but on the odd occassion I don't like a track, I flick over to one of the other two rock channels. Only once so far have I found all three, simultaneously playing stuff I didn't want to hear. :o). . PCd this . . ate biscuits . . TVd/PCd until early. s
2 - Woken by Sally around 7:15am . . walked. . worked on the floor and skirtings . .ate crisps, cheese and salad with three pieces of bread and butter and then some chocolate around 4pm . . set my alarm for 7pm and then napped . . walked. Blimey - walking in the dark already. :o( . . .PCd briefly . . -/unfinished/-
3 - Woke later than I'd wanted, around 7:30am . . .walked . . left Sally at home and drove to pick up Mum before heading off to do some serious, 'get it all done in one go' shopping. . started off at the pet store (after a quick browse in the 'Staples' office store adjacent) and spent a shocking 60.50 (on 2x17Kg sacks of PAL, and 60xtins of mostly PAL)!!! . . encouraged by Mum, we stopped off at a nearby Bensons furniture store to have a look at new double beds. It's one of those things I was definitely going to buy at some point, together with a cooker etc etc. (all part of not wanting to have to blow all my remaining savings on new windows for the house!). To cut a long 'laying around umming and ahhing' story short, somehow encouraged by Mum's presence and the alleged end of the sale in a couple of days, I decided to buy one - not entirely the cheapest! A four drawer divan and mattress, together with perhaps a rather 'girly' 'Paris' metal white/brass headboard, which I figured would look very cool in that front bedroom. The prices on the tickets added up to somewhere around 630 which is what I was expecting to pay. Mum however, had different ideas! She's been watching daytime TV shows with 'Dom' where they send people into stores and try and blag huge discounts off the marked prices. She kinda 'forced' me into having a bit of a half hearted go!!! YIKES!!

- /unfinished/- . 545

On to the nearby Focus diy store to end up spending 34.83 on mostly electrical socket boxes and the like. After much agonising over the decision 'with or without', I decided to buy a 500w white floodlight WITHOUT a PIR, for illuminating the back garden (it gets SO dark out there at night).

Stopped off at Sainsburys on the way back and did a major shop for groceries and supplies (81.34) - and I'm horrified to admit, 53.95 on 250g. of Golden Virginia tobacco!! :o(

- /unfinished/- .
4 - Woke . .walked . ? . . walked . .?
5 - Walked. Stopped in at the builders for more sandpaper (Sold by the metre from a roll - 3.38 for two metres of different grades). . worked on the floor . . called it quits around 2pm and put a coat of undercoat on the skirtings . . left Sally at home and drove to the Focus DIY store for another 2.5ltr can of 33.99 Ronseal floor varnish. Somehow ended up spending 122.93!!!!! Seemed pointless delaying, so I invested 34.99 in a 40metre JCB extension reel which will enable me to, at least temporarily, put power to the garage when I need it. With winter fast approaching and the nights already well drawn in, I need to think pretty soon about sorting out some lighting etc in that garage. Also invested in a couple of 'cheap and nasty', flat packed pine finish boxes (15.99 each) just to give me somewhere to store some of my junk and to maybe enable me to open and clear away some of the unopened boxes I still have laying around all over the place. In the fullness of time when I've actually amassed some proper furniture, I figure those boxes would still be of use around the place, either painted or stained, depending on the room they go in - so not a 'complete' waste of money. Also scored a stand alone PIR unit for just 5 on a 'clearance/reduced' table. Haven't quite figured out all the outside lighting I'm gonna need to do front and back quite yet, but I just know I'm gonna need one of those somewhere. . stopped off briefly at Mums on the way home and dropped off the peanuts she'd left in the car the other day . . . dragged the ladder out of the garage and had a go at fitting the 500w outside light to the back of the house. My measuring and marking of the outside wall was meticulous and perfect, to ensure the cable emerged under the floorboards inside the immersion heater cupboard. Unfortunately, my drilling of the wall wasn't so clever. I went in at an upward angle and the cable eventually emerged a couple of inches higher than desirable, awkwardly behind the skirting board (over which the cupboard was built!). Made things awkward but got there in the end. More or less finished off the 'outside' bit of the job except for painting over the filler around the cable. . walked . . put a temporary plug on the outside light wire and plugged it in to one of the bedroom sockets to test and climb back up the ladder to adjust. Yeah - not perfect but it'll do quite nicely. . Had a brainwave and did a temporary hole through the ceiling in the kitchen and dropped the spotlight cable down to a socket. That was 'easy'. Until I sort out where I want what sort of switch, that'll do quite nicely, 'long term temporary'. . did dish washing chores . . ate bowls of cornflakes . . BB called . . assembled one of the pine storage boxes I'd bought in Focus. . TVd until bed around midnight.
6 - Woke around 6am, snoozed on then up around 7:15am . . walked under a clear blue sky again. Retrieved the huge bath towel I'd seen dumped in the undergrowth last night, for use on Sally, although it's actually better than some of the ones I'm using on me! . . dabbed a bit of paint around where the cable for the outside light comes through the wall before getting back to working on the floor, gluing and filling all the little 'noticeable' imperfections, prior to sanding more of it down. .couldn't do much while the filler and glue dried so I lifted the floorboards in the corner of the room and finally got round to having a go at bricking up the weird hole in the wall beneath the boards that goes right through the cavity into next door. Much cutting of bricks with the disc cutter out in the garden to come up with enough pieces to do the job, and which would fit through/in the awkward gap. Eventually cemented them in place with great difficulty. Not perfect - probably not 'airtight', but the best I can do working from one side. . hosed down all the brick dust from the garden, and with the ladder still in place, even had a bit of a go at cleaning the part of the conservatory roof I could reach with the broom. First time I've unwound and used that garden hose that was left by the previous occupants coiled up on the fence near the car port. Actually quite a nice fitting on the end, with a selection of half a dozen or so different spray types. . had a 'proper' look at the side of the conservatory where it meets next doors extension (which had been flagged up by the survey because it has no proper flashing). Blimey - no flashing at all in fact. The rain must run straight down behind that wood panel and go who knows where, causing all sorts of issues. That whole leaking 'sunroom/conservatory' or whatever you want to call it, is in desperate need of rebuilding/replacing in its entirety!!! :o( . . . ate mushrooms, onions and grated cheese with four pieces of bread and butter followed by chocolate . . really wanted to get on with the 'final' sanding down of the bedroom floor, but just couldn't resist the desire to sleep. Napped for a couple of hours . .dabbed a little more paint on the rear wall by the light . . walked . .sanded floorboards (by hand!) until 9:30pm . . ate bowls of co-co pops . . BB called . . TVd until bed around 1am. Lucinao Pavarotti died this day. a
7 - Woke real early, snoozed on then up around 6:15am . . walked. Followed a weird trail of sawdust along the path in BGdns and discovered at the end of it, thrown down a slope and hacked cut and prised open, a safe! The internal linings of the safe had been packed with the sawdust, which seems like a weird method of construction for such a thing!?? Must be a good reason I guess. Asked a couple of dog walkers if they had a phone, intending to rope them in to notifying the local police, but it turned out that one of the ones I asked had already done so. Cool. Makes a change for it not to be me calling the police about such a find. :o) . . . - /unfinished/- . . varnished the bedroom floor. AT LAST!!!.
8 - Up before 7am. The promise of yet another amazing warm and sunny day once the early morning sea mist had burned off . . walked . . did laundry and tidied up around the place and vacuumed some of the layers of dust away . .had a go at putting the cheap blind up on the small window next to the front door. Should have been a simple five minute job but it somehow turned into a mini nightmare - not helped by actually making a mistake and doing a bunch of cutting away some recesses in the frame bead for nothing!! . .Mum popped in for chats and coffee for a couple of hours with the paper and food donations . . ate Mum donated sausage rolls with crisps and chocolate . . napped . . succeeded in putting the blind up next to the front door by completely removing the top bead and then gluing in another scrap of wood cut from some hanging around in the garage . . walked . . assembled the second pine box I'd bought in focus and put it in the other living room alcove . finally got round to putting a plug on my old stereo and hooked up the speakers and connected it to the audio output on my Sky box so I can make the most of the music channels when I'm in the mood. Got it all hooked up and working in time to watch David Gilmour of Pink Floyd, live in concert at the Albert Hall on BBC1. . touched base with BB . . TVd until bed after midnight. aa
9 - The newly decorated back bedroomUp around 7:15am . . .walked under the grey sky. .'poked' at the back bedroom floorboards and started the 'final' screwing down of some of the floorboards. Should have been a simple enough job but it ended up with me having to remove every screw and carefuly 'grind' out some of the varnish from every hole, before putting the screw all the way back in. Wouldn't have been 'so' bad if my electric screwdriver hadn't decided it was already time to break!!!!! No reverse gear anymore! What a rip off. I confess to losing my temper and throwing the thing out onto the landing floor in disgust. (Make note to self - the next time you buy an electric drill, buy one with a variable speed control so it can double up as a screwdriver.) . So - that's the room pretty much there, except for gloss painting the skirtings, etc. (which will have to wait until after PS's visit or else he'll be made ill with the fresh paint fumes!) and putting a few bits of emulsion here and there where the floorboard cleaning splashed the wall. Looks pretty good I reckon. :o)
- /unfinished/- . . . . . walked . . pottered around and opened up and sorted out a few of my boxes, and actually got round to hanging up some of my long-unused clothes. Damn - I need some coat hangers. . touched base with BB . . TVd until bed.
10 - Walked and carried on down town in search of some coat hangers and to do a bit of a tour of the charity shops. Managed to get a very small handful of hangers from a clothes shop for nothing. . finally 'bit the bullet' and determined to devote (waste!) the day to trying to sort out my faulty PC. It's become a bit of a 'blackness' hanging over me, and it's reached the point where I'll do anything other than have to go and turn the damn thing on. Haven't even done my journal for days - or is it weeks?!!! . My plan was to simply remove the possibly faulty drive, disconnect and isolate my secondary (300GB SATA - data) drive for safety, instal another (guess I have quite a few laying around) and then re-instal windows and everything, run it for a while and see if that resolves the problem (and PROVES the drive WAS faulty - although I guess it 'could' have been a virusy/configuration type problem, despite running up-to-date Virgin supplied PCGuard anti virus) . Couldn't be bothered to build up a machine just to go through all my larger drives to see if anything I wanted to keep was on them, so I simply plumped for an old 40GB drive and without looking at what was on it, started the switch over / partition / format / re-instal etc. Usual hours and hours of messing around. :o( . . . cooked and ate four small cheese burgers during the Windows instal nonsense. Somehow ended up continuing battling with it all, ALL day! Big headache and SO in need of a nap but by early evening I was pretty much up and running, on-line and done with downloading massive quantities of Windows updates and anti virus etc, etc. . walked . . Aimlessly surfed for several hours, just trying to use the PC enough to know whether or not the intermitant problem was still going to occur, or if it really WAS a fault with the removed hard drive and was resolved. . . BB called . . ate a banana and biscuits . . PCd until early WITHOUT any problems. :o) aa
11 - Up around 7am . . walked . . straight back to the PC and fitted the brand new 320GB SATA drive I've had sitting around in a box for the last year or so! Partitioned, formatted and then made a complete 'backup' copy of all the 'precious' data (photos/music/websites/etc, etc) on my second 300GB SATA hard drive. (I keep all my data including e-mails, downloaded programs, personal files, etc, etc on one drive, and only use the main C drive for running windows and programs etc. (together with copies of just a handfull of the more often altered personal files from the other drive as a backup. Seems to make things easier when I run into difficult to resolve virus/hardware type problems. Easy to quickly open up the machine and disconnect the 'precious' and keep it safe.) . the actual copying of the files took almost a couple of hours so I used the 'down time' to do some gardening (badly overgrown and neglected where I've been spending all my time decorating the back bedroom!). Mowed both lawns and then set about doing a major trim of the back garden hedges. All was going ok until the hedge trimmer went up in smoke - quite literally! Bugger! :o( Well THAT didn't last long then did it! What a rip off! Wonder if I dare trying to take that back and get my money back, without any of the packaging or the receipt - the same as the electric screwdriver!! Lesson learned. Do NOT buy cheap crap from Focus EVER again! Awful how these things work out isn't it. It's 'hard up' people with little money who inevitably buy that sort of cheap stuff, and it's those very people who can least afford it who are ripped off by being sold crap that'll break right away! :o( . .ended up exhaustingly battling on with a pair of hand shears (did I inherit those with the house, or - I have a sneaking suspicion/vague recollection I may have actually salvaged them and pulled them out of that guys skip down the road in Bristol!) Actually they turned out to be remarkably effective and I managed, with the use of the old loft ladder propped up here and there against the body of the hedges/pergola etc, to get the job done pretty well. . cut enough of the debris up into small pieces to more or less fill the compost bin, and then caved in and just stuffed the rest into my spare green dustbin for attention some other time. Headachey . . trimmed my hair and beard before showering. . ate four pieces of bread and butter, a bag of crisps, a defrosted pork pie, grated cheese and a bunch of 'salady' stuff . . napped . . walked . . back to the PC and removed the pristine 'back-up/copy' SATA drive and returned it to the safety of its cardboard box. Feels good to have finally got round to doing that. Now all I have to do is figure out the safest place to store it. . put in yet more hours (what a terrible waste of time - and there must be people all over the world wasting time in a similar manner!! Imagine what could be acheived with all that time and effort if we didn't all have PCs to consume our lives!?) setting up programs and rebuilding connections and e-mail accounts etc, etc, etc (with the occasional mistake requiring a restore - only to find you haven't set a restore point recently, so you have to do a bunch of it all over again! Arrrgggh! Infuriating.). Actually set up Outlook Express for my 'Telsweb' webspace mail for the first time ever. Big mistake successfully testing it - I had over 600 junk mails to download (and that for a mail address I've never used/given to anyone!!! Grrrr) . . BB called in the middle of things. Called her back later. . TVd very briefly for a break and ate a couple of bananas and some chocolate . . PCd more until early. Getting there - very slowly. Almost mostly back up and running where I want to be. aa
12 - Up around 8am . . .walked in the sun and carried on down town to see if the clock I'd spotted in a charity shop the other was still there. It wasn't. What WAS there next to the harbor was a small table top type of sale. Scored a cheap quality, tin with a brass effect finish (not unlike I used to have in Bristol), replacement for my living room waste bin for 4. :o) On to another couple of charity shops and scored a couple of small matching, as-new table lamps (aluminium type finish, candle stick style with near white shades )for 7.50. Probably shouldn't have bought those because they really should be brass to match everything else everywhere, but I figure for the time being they will be ok for bedside lamps (when I finally manage to get myself a bedside table or two!). . ate a banana and then back to the PC to continue the re-instal/setup of everything and to PC a bit of this (only to find the broadband ISP was pretty much down!) . .tried to get on with something but no - it's no good. I've SO much to do all over the place, but I just haven't the energy to do any of it right now. . cooked and ate four sausages with chips and bread and butter . . . napped the afternoon away . . .walked . . PCd this trying to recall stuff from the last week and more. Quite simply, I can't. It's mostly been just a blurr of working on that back bedroom and latterly the damn PC! Usually, even if I'm too busy to update this, I'll at least make a memory jogger note or two. With the PC acting up and me so loathed to turn it on, I've not even done that, so the daily minutia is lost!
13 - Up around 7:30am . . .walked. . loaded up the car with the big weird dark wood 'bookcase' type unit that was in the kitchen when I moved in, together with the spice rack and a couple of surplus odds and ends (curtains/lampshades, etc) and drove to the charity shop to see if they'd have it all. Figured it was worth 'rushing it' down there like that, because there was a dark wood corner display unit for sale in the shop the other day, which absolutely matched. Exactly the same make of furniture, whatever it was. Who knows - maybe the previous owners had donated the corner unit? Thankfully, the store happily took it all, so a little more room in my 'dumping ground' garage at last. . drove on to the other charity shop to buy the two small pine units I'd seen there yesterday. They aren't something I actually want, but for 10 the pair would do as a couple of temporary bedside tables. Wouldn't you know it - they were sold! Damn -they sure do have a quick turn around in all those charity shops. You can't think about it overnight at all. 'He who hesitates' and all that. :o( . . stopped off briefly at home and picked up the burned out hedge trimmer and the electric screwdriver with no reverse gear and then left Sally at home and drove to the Focus DIY store to plead my case for a refund. Thankfully they agreed to giving me a refund by credit notes, so that was a relief. Wandered around the store for ages looking at everything again (because 'everything' is pretty much what I'm gonna need to buy at some point!) , before managing to just get back in the car and head home without buying anything . stopped for petrol on the way (31.61ltrs@30). . had a climb up the ladder (still propped against the back wall of the house since I put the garden light up) and examined the 'feel' of the first couple of rows of roof tiles. Blimey - they are pretty slippery!!! Damn. I don't see me ever risking THAT without a proper roof-hook ladder (like I left behind in Bristol!! :o( ). That's a blow. :o( . .had a go at seeing if the ladder could actually be threaded through the house rather than having to walk it all the way down the street and around. Yayy - with some difficulty, it IS possible. . with the ladder out the front, I figured I may as well have a close look at the upstairs bay window, with a view to identifying problems and planning an attack strategy for trying to make them more water tight for the winter (which IS of course what I should have done long ago, instead of messing around decorating bedrooms - with winter now almost upon me!). . ended up spending hours doing a bit of serious 'botching' to the small rotting area beneath the metal 'canopy'. Applied a bunch of filler/PVA mix to gaps and moving bits. My plan is to eventually paint over all the filler to make it weatherproof-ish, and then hopefully 'cap over' the entire area with some of the bits of PVC I salvaged from a neighbours skip the other day. . removed the house numbers and had a go at scraping off and then re-painting, the section of wall where the paint all bubbled off in the rain. Can't figure out why I'm having such a hassle with that bit of wall. Could that old paint be 'off' in some way I wonder? . . used the loft ladder and hand shears to trim all the front garden hedges. HARD work, but got the job done eventually. . skipped food and didn't stop all day until gone 6pm! . . walked. Spent ages messing around with the camcorder taking photos of yachts and failing to get a picture of the couple of dolphins rising amongst them. Beautiful evening, but boy does it cool off real quick once the sun goes down. . . ate spam sandwiches with crisps and then a whole pack of Mr Kipling slices! . . TVd ready for bed by 9pm! . . ate bowls of cornflakes . . touched base with BB . . TVd but oh my god, I felt SO tired. Ended up laying across the sofa and chair pretty much unable to move for hours. Actually too tired to get up and go to bed until around 1am! s
14 - Up around 7:30am . .with PS arriving later, I don't really feel able to get into anything 'major', so I think the day will be spent just sorting stuff out and making a place for him to sleep etc. .put laundry on and then walked. .put another coat of paint on the bit of wall by the front door. . pottered around sorting stuff out and tidying up a little while doing more laundry. . took another hanging basket hook down from the back wall of the house and filled a bunch of old screw holes with PVA/filler . . returned Mums ansaphone call and touched base . .briefly PCd a bit of this. Damn - I WAS right. The clock on the PC isn't keeping time! What the hell is it with this PC at the moment?! I presume that is the motherboard battery gone down? (I trust that has nothing to do with my now apparantly corrected faulty hard-disk symptoms?) . . pottered around . . ate . . napped . . walked in full rubber gear in the rain . . .ate ham rolls . . TVd until PS arrived after 9pm . . TV chats and beer until around 2am
15 - Woken by PS/Sally up and around before shortly after 6am, although PS went back to bed . . sat in the rising sun in front garden for coffee and cigarettes . . . walked and then carried on down to the harbor for PS paid for coffee and muffin at a harborside outdoor cafe table before getting the 10 o'clock ferry (6 each, return) over to Tqy. Sat on the foremost benches at the bow for the half hour trip over. Sally was brilliant and took it all in her stride without much reaction at all, mostly just laying down to sleep on the deck like she does in the back of the car. The sea appeared to be really calm with just a little chop on the surface, but it turned out there were slightly larger 'hidden' waves rolling through occasionaly (a 'swell'?), which actually made for an interesting trip, with that occasional 'leaving your stomach behind' feeling. .aimlessly wandered around and then walked up through all the shops in the crowds, just having a look around before wandering back along to have a look at the beach. Ended up just wandering around like that for hours! Incredible weather for mid September. People swimming and sunbathing and wandering around in nothing but shorts, etc. Had a proper 'riviera' feel about it all, and the best thing about it - WITHOUT the high-season crowds. . .ate PS purchased ham eggs and chips at an outside table at a harborside pub . .briefly waited with the small crowd and then back on the ferry for the 3 o'clock return. Sally seemed eager to get back on it and tried to drag me through the small queue to get on (although I think she was just influenced by 'going with the flow of the pack')!?? Once again we took up the same seats on the bow. Even more of a 'lumpy' ride back. Played around with the camcorder taking still photos lots, but sadly hardly a one turned out to be worth all the bother. SpectacleThe ferry sisterShame really - a HUGE number of small sail boats were all out doing whatever it was they were doing. Never seen so many - the horizon appeared to be absolutely covered in them. Extraordinary spectacle. Half way across, we passed the identicle sister ship of the ferry we were on - both sailing at the same time every hour from the opposite ends of the trip. . . within five minutes of getting off the ferry, and heading back along the harbor edge, poor Sally proved to have developed a bad stomach and embarassed me by having to do a 'difficult-to-scoop', poop! Poor dog. Sea sick? Boy - thank god she'd managed to hold it until we got off the ferry!!! A VERY lucky escape!! . . coffee and chats in the garden until all too soon, it was Sally's walk time - again!! Walked with PS and took him on the walk up the hill I can see from the front of my house, to show him the view and give him that special perspective on where my house is in relation to everything. Sat at 'the viewpoint' until the sun had disappeared behind the horizon before heading back. . ate salad, cheese, pork pie, two pieces of bread and butter and crisps etc., although PS appeared to leave rather a lot. I don't think he's used to eating half a going brown iceburg lettuce or a going-off, soft, leathery skinned tomatoe!! lol . . TVd . . BB called . .TVd struggling to stay awake. I was only half way through a PS donated beer when I just couldn't do it any more and HAD to go to bed, shortly after midnight. das
16 - Woken by Sally 'staring at me' around 7:30am . .several coffees and cigarettes in the garden before joined by PS . . walked late, the long walk through the woods and down onto the beach, to sit around in the sun for quite a while. A family of five or six in individual canoes were paddling around the coast exploring, and briefly stopped off at the beach for a rest - which gave us something to watch. All this 'theme park' type activity around here kinda starts to rub off after a while and makes you want to have a go. Paddling around the coast in those canoes looked like a real neat thing to do. If I didn't have Sally, (and if I wasn't a committed 'land lubber') I guess I could do that sort of thing - walk a canoe down there and paddle away for the day or more. . eventually walked on round to F. cove and ended up sat at one of the tables at the little cafe there and had ourselves a breakfast. Very pleasant relaxed attitude, with not very many people around and the cafe owner treating Sally to a handful of biscuits etc (as everyone says - with the view and eating out etc., it could almost be somewhere foreign). Sat there for quite a while watching the world go by, and amusing ourselves by recognising comedy characters from the 'Fast Show' everywhere we looked - even down to the 'manic depressive artist and his wife'. A guy dressed in mostly black, more suitable for an office than the beach, came wandering down carrying lots of gear, with his wife behind carrying even more, and set up his easel and folding chair etc etc at the waters edge. He had the biggest collection of brushes I've ever seen, and carefully chose a couple before starting his oil painting (on what appeared to be a dark brown canvas!?). We made a point of walking past him as we left, with the slightest hint of drizzle in the air. Despite all our whispered amusement about him, it did appear he WAS a 'proper' artist. . eventually walked back home and PS left for home around 12:30pm. Blimey - his visit seems to have absolutely exhausted me - Sally too! . . TVd and watched a little of the Grand Prix. .moved the 'spare' mattress back onto my bed under my own . . PCd and swapped the motherboard battery from the PC next door had given me, into my own. Fingers crossed - seems to have done the trick . . SH called to touch base . . ate chocolate biscuits . . walked. Much cooler with a stiff breeze - very autumnal. Stopped off at the local store and bought all four of the 'going out of date' pasties they had there for around 30p each. . feel utterly wiped out! Ate a pasty, crisps and some chocolate . . touched base with BB a bit earlier than usual. I feel SO tired. . in bed not long after 10pm! a
17 - Up just before 7am . . walked and found 2p. .grabbed a bit more of the PVC stuff thrown in the skip up the road. . PCd this . Mum called to touch base . .balanced my accounts and got on top of paperwork and such, all morning! . . cooked and ate four defrosted sausages and chips, followed by a couple of cheap chocolate toffee snack bars. . napped the afternoon away until gone 5pm! . . PCd briefly reading the local news. Blimey - offshore powerboats racing in the bay at the end of the month!!. . . walked. Damn it's cold all of a sudden. Like a switch has been flicked turning Autumn on! A couple of police cars appeared to be taking names and addresses of people from an unmarked van, near BGdns as I was leaving!!? Feel better (a little less achey) for having done little all day. . PCd doing a bit of 'roll over' type updating on this. Nights are drawing in real quick - total nighttime darkness by 8pm. My broadband appears to be down (and stayed that way all night!!)!!?. . BB called . . PCd messing with a handful of pictures (Ahoy). . . ate bowls of cornflakes . . to bed around midnight. a
18 - Up just after 7am . . walked in the cold sun. .broadband is STILL down (or is it something my end?!)!?? Woooops - it WAS something my end. Somehow the password in the connection dialogue box had got itself altered!?? Lucky not to have been blocked with all that trying to log on with a duff password! . aimlessly surfed a bit and ended up (not for the first time) looking at all the bedside cabinets in Argos. Almost tempted to go buy a couple, just to get me by for the timebeing (should I buy white an replace the handles or paint a cheaper bare pine?), but managed to resist - again, because to buy a pair of even the cheapest, is quite an investment. . . with a sunny day forecast before the possibility of rain for the rest of the week, I ended up spending most of the day, up and down the ladder, getting serious with the 'botch weatherproofing' (hopefully!) of the front bedroom bay windows. Finished applying the last of PVA/filler I wanted to do above the windows, and then removed my 'test' layers of ugly brown silicon sealant I'd put on in the early part of the year. Cleaned around every one of the ten panes (pains!) of glass with white spirit before eventually sealing around them ALL with almost an entire tube of clear sealant. Not pretty close up (a good finish takes much practice - and a licked finger to smooth it does NOT work!) but actually not 'too' noticeable from either the ground OR even inside the bedroom. Some 'immigrant' guy walking along the road, called out to me at one point and I walked to the gate to have a word as Sally did her guard dog thing. He thought I was a window installer! lol Must look ok. lolol ) Assuming I made a decent enough job of that, and once I get some paint on the filler etc. (and maybe even cap over a bunch of the wood frames/filler etc with PVC pieces - I have yet to do a similar job on the living room windows!), if the rain STILL gets in , I'm gonna be fairly stumped as to how!! Slow hard work, with much precarious 'no hands' hanging off the top of the ladder, bending over backwards with the silicon gun! Had to reposition the ladder many times to reach all five panes during the different phases of the work. I can calculate an absolute minimum of twenty times climbing up and down - and probably nearer fifty overall, given all the messing around and occasionaly dropping things! . . while working up the ladder, the builders from the house up the road were finishing off the bulk of their construction work and were tidying up and loading up the skip (from which I'd already removed most of everything made of PVC, including a FULL length of as-new box section guttering). There was a bit of banter amonsgt them about who'd have this and that, which gave me the opportunity to call out and say "Can I have them?". They welcomed me to have whatever I wanted, so I flew down the ladder to go and have a look at the cheap melamine 'tables' I could see thrown in there. They were two melamine 'open boxes' with small circular bare chipboard table tops. The builder guy was apologetic that he'd just broken one of the panes of glass. Huh? Turns out, they'd each had a circular piece of expensive ground-edge glass to go on top. I've seen such things used in various peoples porches hereabouts. They completely cover the unit with a piece of nice cloth and have the glass on top and use them as small display type tables. For such a thing it doesn't at all matter what the units underneath look like, so they WERE pretty ropey looking with some of the white edging etc coming away, but I figured as a temporary solution, I'd be able to cut the chipboard tops square, put on some paint and use them as bedside cabinets. I very quickly moved them into my hallway, complete with the one remaining circle of glass (which could well end up being some sort of coffee table or some such in the future). . one of the older builder guys appeared to be very easy going and talkative ('So and So & Sons' - I got the impression he was So and So) and went on about coming across lots of things being thrown away - 3 piece sweets, a double bed recently (!) etc, and then went on to say they had a store room around the corner which was full of builders type 'stuff' including maybe useful bits of PVC, which he'd only recently managed to re-open after having it locked up for years. I was welcome to have a look in it to see if there was anything of use to me!!! Blimey. So happy was he making the suggestion, he even had me get in his van and drive round with him to have a look at it all! There was some difficulty opening the rusty padlock on the ivy covered garage door, but eventually he managed it to reveal a MASS of timber, PVC sections, all manner of unidentifiable but probably very useful 'stuff' - but also a saw bench, concrete lintel, ladder, loft ladder, odds and ends - so much stacked to the ceiling, it wasn't possible to really actually go in or see what WAS there. I tried to climb in a little, but it was all cobwebs like something out of Indiana Jones or Lord of the Rings etc. Got immediately covered in them (and maybe something else! I was all itchy and maybe even bitten, all the rest of the day until I eventually took a shower!!!!!) and pretty quickly retreated because it really did seem quite possible to get actually caught up in them, so thick was the garage-deep curtain!! The conversation basically went along the lines that they wanted to eventually clear it all out (maybe retaining 'some' of it), so I said if they got a skip, I'd do the work to sort through the stuff and fill it. That was how it was left and he drove me back home where he jotted down my name and phone number on a scrap of paper he had laying around. Whether or not he actually gets back to me about it, we shall see. I suspect not. You know what builders are like. Much talk and then too busy. I guess I could call them if I dare? We'll see. . as I was being dropped back home, I spotted a toilet freshly dumped in the skip. What a waste. A quality 'Royal Daulton' pan, with a pretty good-quality white seat on it! I couldn't help myself - I undid it and - well - I now have a toilet seat collection! lololol There are a couple of pin-prick like marks on the lid where it was thrown in the skip, so I'm not sure it's worth swapping with what I have at the moment, but it IS better quality. . during the day while working on the windows I made full use of the sun and put another coat of masonary paint on the wall by the front door, and on a bit of the back wall by the kitchen window, stained by rust and where I'd filled the holes from some planter brackets I'd removed. . finished with the windows for the day, I had a proper look at the display tables from the skip. I don't believe it! Surmised from a slight chamferred detail on the top edge, those bare chipboard circular table tops appeared to be, one glued, one screwed, onto the top of what were presumably once a couple of cheap bedside cabinets! The screwed top came off real easy, but of course sadly leaving a few screw holes in the middle of the cabinet top. The glued one was harder to remove but I managed in the end with only a hint of a few marks left on the revealed surface once I'd scrubbed it with white spirit. Both cabinets would benefit from dismantling and gluing back together, but they'll do for me for the time being. How cool is THAT! :o) Rushed them up to the bedroom, put my newly aquired bedside lamps over some of the marks, and an old clock radio I inherited with the house over the screw holes. Voila. They are almost exactly what I had in mind for a temporary solution. EXCELLENT! How weird it is that stuff I want turns up like that. It isn't the first time that sort of thing has happened. In fact (with the exception of a large suitcase of monies! lol), it keeps on happening doesn't it!!!???!!! These cabinets are a very clear example of it. I DO NOT believe in 'hocus pocus' - trouble is - I think it may well believe in me! . . around 5pm I screwed the house numbers back on the wall by the door. If that bit of paint wrinkles and bubbles off in the rain again, I'm gonna be REALLY pissy/confused/at a loss. . My bedroom getting cosymessed around in the living room with my little electronic indoor outdoor thermometer I've had sat there for months, and managed to eventually thread the sensor wire through the window frame where the aerial lead comes in and screwed it to the wall, so it'll now give me a 'proper' warning of how cold it is outside (useful for determining how much to wear for Sally's walks) - and how cold my poorly insulated house is really getting. A silly little job but I thought I may as well do it, to cover up one of the eyesore exposed red wall plugs in the living room wall, from where I've removed a nasty piece of ugly plastic trunking, which the previous occupants had used to route the aerial lead down the wall!. . walked and stopped off at the store on the way back for something to eat which turned out to be a large pork pie and some going cheap sandwich rolls . .TVd and ate the whole pork pie with lettuce, tomatoes, onion and three of the sandwich rolls and then some chocolate . . touched base with BB . .prolonged the 'pleasure of waiting' for as long as I could, before going up to spend a little time in the bedroom - to feel pleased about the freebie bedside cabinets and to see what the 7.50 the pair, bedside lights looked like lit up in the dark. Blimey. Feels pretty cozy in there, lookin' like that. Very pleased. :o) Really quite looking forward to getting my new bed now (only a few more days), to really finish off the look. . TVd until exhausted to bed around midnight. saa
19 - Up before 7am . . slow getting going (wow my back is aching/fragile. All that bending over backwards on the ladder!) and then walked the long walk down through the woods before carrying along into town, to tour the charity shops (Sally was given dog-treats in two of them :o) ) and eventually draw some spending money out of the building society. An occasional hint of drizzle and the threat of showers in the air. . with the deteriorated weather there was no getting on with more work on the windows, and my aching back and general tiredness saw me end up just pottering around and PCing and fighting the desire to return to bed . . Mum popped in for chats with food donations for a couple of hours . . ate Mum donated ham rolls with crisps . . PCd . . napped . . walked . . PCd this - at length until late . .ate biscuits and TVd, and ended up getting engrossed in 'The Mothman Prophecies' film on BBC1. Actually a bit unsettling, guessing it was the bridge half way through, and in the light of that recent real-life bridge collapse in the states!! :o| . . briefly touched base with BB and then PCd before eventually to bed in the early hours. saa
20 - Up real late getting on for 9am! . . walked even later in drizzle showers . .pottered around, TVd/PCd and somehow wasted the day away. . fried and ate a whole pack of Mum donated bacon with four eggs, a tin of baked beans and some bread and butter mid afternoon . . napped until around 7pm!! . . walked late, with a torch in full darkness already. :o(. . TVd and ate a bunch of biscuits. 'Recycled' dog ends to reclaim the unused tobacco. . BB called . .TVd/PCd until deep into early. Damn - I'm slipping into lacking the energy or desire to get on with stuff and being all nocturnal again! Oh how different life is on prozac.
21 - Up late . . walked . . feel tired and strangely light headed!? More drizzle showers. . .pottered around, TVd/PCd, once again spending hours surfing nonsense. During the messing around I downloaded and installed Yahoo messenger for the first time in well over a year. Seemed pretty different to the last time I used it. What was DEEPLY disconcerting was that immediately after having successfully installed it, I had a message pop up saying that 'charlie_boyce@hotmail.co.uk' had attempted to add himself to my contacts list!!!??? In fact, considering I've not used IM for well over a year, it was even a little unsettling to see my old contact list (albeit only BB and Coz1) spontaneously appear. They keep everything on file somewhere don't they! So - with an unfamiliar messenger all on the go, the first thing I had to do was immediately figure out how to appear invisible to everyone - and most definitely refuse that request to be added to the contacts!! (Does messenger automatically tell them they've been refused?!!!!! That's the last thing I need - to suddenly 'reactivate' some yobs interest in me!) VERY unsettling. Unfortunately, as far as I could tell, there was no way of determining WHEN that attempt to 'get at me' was made. Could have been last year - could have been yesterday couldn't it - and of course could have been anybody who may have read my journal! :o( . . Touched base with BB and confirmed we could IM . .received a call from the furniture company confirming my bed would be delivered between 8am and 1pm on Monday. :o) . . napped until around 7pm again! . . walked in the dark. Damn, damn, damn! That bloody messenger thingy allegedly from Boyce, has screwed me up more than I'd realised. It's taken me straight back to having all those paranoid feelings of a year ago (keeping an eye on who is behind me, and jumping at every car that draws near), as though it was yesterday! Weird my memory - I can't remember what happened last week, but I can recall that last night in Bristol, in great detail (despite not being able to bring myself to look back at any of it). Walking in the dark doesn't help I guess. I don't think I've ever said it here, but I STILL sit watching TV every night with my 4" blade lock-knife, open and at arms reach next to me you know. Probably always will. :o( Also - when doing this decorating/re-wiring work on the house, I get a bit panicky if the 'mess' gets too great or goes on for too long - in case I have to suddenly up and leave. Everything I do is done with one eye on how saleable the house is right now, just in case I have to suddenly leave and put it on the larket, like I did in Bristol. THAT is why I had to push on and skip food etc. and get those bedrooms 'mostly' done so quick. . ate ham rolls and crisps . . BB called. . TVd . . ate bowls of corn flakes before bed around midnight.
22 - Up around 7:45am. That's more like it - almost 'proper' nights sleep. .walked in sunny spells and found 5p and yet another of those cheap plastic A4 pocket things which come in useful. . PCd this. . did the mountain of dishwashing all morning! . . Mum called in with the paper and food donations around midday for a couple of hours. . ate a Mum donated large pork pie with crisps. . managed to resist the desire to sleep and eventualy had a go at tackling the last bit of wiring to the fuse box of the upstairs sockets, to actually make it a ring main. I'd been putting this off. Whoever had connected up that consumer unit had left the insulation on the main incoming cables a bit short, and the bare always-live cables were exposed for around 5mm or so where they entered the main switch on the unit! So - after routing the new cables down from upstairs, the final messing around of removing the single old and connecting the two new at the fuse box, had to be done VERY carefully, working an inch from immediate death!!!! Worst bit was trying to remember how dangerous it was as I worked at feeding the wires in, stripping the ends and clamping them up. Nasty, but got there in the end by around 7pm - still alive. Still need to tidy up the new runs to the fuse box down the wall in the understairs cupboard, and fix them permanently in place etc., but that can wait. So, at last, I have a proper all-new ring main to all the upstairs sockets at least. :o) . . walked. Actually turned out to be quite a quiet, warm evening (except for the group of youths partying in the lower pill box, with a shopping trolley and beer bottles and debris dumped all around the place! :o( ). Sat on one of the seats under the roof for a while watching the moonrise before eventually heading back to sit in the front and back gardens drinking a bottle of PS donated German beer. . TVd . . touched base with BB . .felt a bit unwell, left half the beer and early to bed by 11pm!
23 - Up around 7am. . PCd this with coffee and cigarettes. .walked . . PCd messing around with this and that and then ended up spending hours trying to get 'Timershot' (part of 'Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP') to upload a webcam image to one (any!!!) of my webspaces. No matter what I tried I just couldn't get it to do it. Must be something to do with logon passwords, but damned if I know what. Shame. It 'could' have done as a bare bones webcam program . . very tired. Ate Mum donated ham rolls with crisps and then some chocolate biscuits before somehow napping the rest of the day away until gone 6pm!! That's a lot of sleep for one day! Bound to be up half the night again now. :o( . . walked in the rain . . moved my bed, etc. out of the front bedroom into the back, and then vacuumed the revealed layers of dust and piles of Sally hair, in preparation for tomorrows bed delivery! . . BB called . . TVd/PCd until late. . Sis2 called, concerned that she'd been trying to call Mum for the last couple of hours, but couldn't get through and kept getting an engaged tone! Touched base with Mum no problem (may have woken her up!) and then called Sis2 back and said it must be something her end. . TVd/PCd/ate biscuits and drank coffee and didn't feel in the least bit tired. Somehow, with a big worrying storm blowing through in the early hours, I ended up staying up so late/early, that with the alarm set for 6am, by the time I WAS worn out there seemed little point in going to bed - so I didn't!!!! I'll regret THAT later!
24 - More weird 'dynamic' weather. By the time the 6am alarm had gone off, the wind and rain had passed through. . walked in sunny spells and a brief shower. Much debris all around, blown about by the storm's strong winds. Amazing rainbow over the bay as we got caught in a shower. Grabbed a couple of snaps for my 'Ahoy' page, but once again the camcorder wasn't really up to the job. . . PCd this, feeling pretty light-headed tired . .mostly sat around all morning, unable to get on with anything, waiting for the bed delivery. Unpacked a couple of boxes and located all my bedding and tried to sort it into single bed (double size duvet) / double bed (king size duvet) piles etc. .put a few things through the laundry, but as soon as it was ready to go out on the line, the heavy showers returned and I eventually ended up hanging everything on an airer and standing it up in the garage! . . didn't dare get bogged down cooking anything for lunch, in case the bed delivery turned up in the middle of things, so quickly made a couple of ham sandwiches and with crisps and chocolate grabbed a bite to eat around 12:45pm . . by 1:15pm I figured it was time to start making angry phone calls

the bed will NOT be delivered today!

walked up the post office to withdraw some cash and briefly stopped off at Mums on the way back to share my ranting and raving before quickly heading back (caught out in a rain shower) to sleep! . an ansaphone message had been left by the store salesman (hard to decipher on my ansaphone) I think suggesting the bed 'may' be delivered on Wednesday - but he'd call back some time to confirm that. Yeah right! Grrrr . . I was SO frustrated/outraged/angry I had trouble going to sleep . . at last, finally slept for just a few hours until around 6:30pm. . walked in the dark . .touched base with BB . .TVd. According to the news, even if they HAD tried to deliver my bed today, I probably wouldn't have had it. There was a nasty accident between a motorcycle, a car and an articulated lorry on the main road into town, and the biker had been killed. From the news footage, it even looked as though the twisted remains of his bike had gone up in smoke!! Bizarrely, the ambulance he was initially picked up by was involved in another accident on the way to hospital, and he was eventually tranported by a replacement ambulance! Not his lucky day!!! :o/ The result of all that was, the main road (almost the only one in and out) was closed for hours and the whole area ground to a standstill! . . ate a tin of spaghetti bolognese covered in grated cheese with four pieces of bread and butter . . TVd until bed around 12:45am. Strangely didn't feel particularly tired and had difficulty getting to sleep!
25 - Up around 7:20am. . walked in the cool sun . . PCd this . .tried calling SH to see if it would be today he wanted to meet, but got no answer on either number . .pottered around, PCd, TVd and generally somehow frittered the whole day away acheiving nothing! Actually feel a bit 'down' - the effect of feeling let down/'abused' over that bed nonsense I suspect. . ate a pack of Mum donated bacon, eggs and bread and butter . . napped . . walked. Retrieved three fluorescent strip lights from the skip down the road and set about hooking them up to a bit of cable to see if they worked. One of them did! Well - one out of three isn't bad. So - when I can get round to sorting out how to mount it and where, I have a decent light for the garage (or the attic, or under the floor?). :o) . . TVd . . touched base with BB briefly. . TVd . . didn't feel ready for bed and PCd for hours. Had a bit of a dabble at trying to figure out how to update my main website with a view to re-instating it in its entirety at some point. STILL not sure about all that. . finally to bed not far off 6am!! s
26 - Woken by the ansaphone taking a call just before 9am! Returned SH call. He was about to jump on his bike and head for the Taunton Dean motorway services with the duty free tobacco he'd managed to get for me (as we'd arranged he would, one day or another depending on the weather - to give him a reason to go for a cruise). Damn! Typical - I have only a couple of hours sleep, am really late getting going, and that's the day I need to be early out in the car! . .rushed to wake up with a quick coffee before putting Sally in the car and driving her to BGdns for a quick once round before rushing straight back. With so little sleep, I felt groggy and rather wobbly on my feet, just like being tipsy!!!! Not a good state to be in to be driving anywhere!. .left Sally at home and got back in the car outside, and was litterly just turning the key in the ignition, when I spotted a lorry coming round the corner in front of me. Surely not! Bensons Beds emblazoned down the side. Would you believe it! It WAS my bed being delivered - unannounced! Lept back out of the car and quickly accepted the delivery - although WITHOUT the headboard, which is apparantly to follow some time because it is out of stock or something?!? Grrrrr! . . briefly touched base with Mum and let her know the bed had arrived, and told her I was off to meet SH and suggested if she was passing, she could pop in and check Sally was ok if she wished. (To be honest, I suggested that more as a just letting her know that Sally was on her own, in case I got killed in a motorway accident or some such). . took to the road and crawled out of town in the usual nightmarish traffic bottleneck. Took around half an hour to do the first ten miles as usual!! Terribly frustrating. :o( (A fence at the site of the fatality-bike-accident the other day, had been turned into a makeshift shrine, and was all bunches of flowers and cards and such, as is the habit these days.). . drove off the motorway at the first junction past the services and then back on, to drive back to the same services on the other side. . within ten minutes of parking up, SH appeared with my tobacco. :o) (10x50g packs of Golden Virginia for 55. :o) ). VERY grateful to SH. . . went into the services for brief chats. Felt obliged to buy SH a cuppa as he'd joked I should, but damn - 4.50 for one cup of tea and one cup of coffee!!! WHAT a rip off! Normally I wouldn't dream of EVER having ANYTHING in the services because of their outrageous prices. That left a bitter taste in my wallet! :o( That would have covered a couple of days food bill - or a week of smoking addiction!! . . back out in the car park and briefly drove SHs Harley sportster across to where my car was parked. Wow - a quick blip of the throttle and the acceleration took me quite by suprise. If it wasn't for 'committing my entire existance to the wellbeing of Sally for the rest of her life' (hard to explain to people how I am about that), I'd be looking at finding a way of getting me another bike - and yes, probably a large Harley chop. Now I have a garage, even if I couldn't afford the insurance etc, to put it on the road, I'd have somewhere to 'play' with it and stroke it. lol. . poor SH headed off in the rain with me following in the car, and with a quick wave as he pulled off to turn back at the next junction, I drove straight on back home in the heavy showers . . got back home to find Mum in the kitchen doing all my dishwashing!!!! That was NOT why I'd asked her if she wanted to pop in and see Sally while I was gone! lol. . ate Mum donated corned-beef sandwiches with crisps and a little chocolate before heading back to bed . . napped but only managed an hour or so until woken by Sally barking at some strange guy calling at the door. 'Fishman' was all he said, in a strangely happily excited way, with an irish accent I think, as though I'd know what the hell he was on about and be delighted too!?? I think he was doing a door to door fish sales thing. Bizarre (and the little van he had parked up the street didn't appear to be refridgerated, which put me off a bit). I declined, although with hindsight, if I hadn't been so half asleep, I may have been interested in an odd Mackerel or something as an experiment.( I can't recall what mackerel tastes like, and want to know if it would be worth digging out Dads old fishing gear and trying to catch some from the rocks one day, to eat - as so many people seem to. Would be awkward with Sally though - and I haven't a clue how to go about it.) . . unpacked the bed and did the small amount of 'assembly' - which actually consisted of just pushing in the castors and clipping on two inadequate looking metal clips underneath, to hold the two base halves together. One of the sockets for the castors was a bit 'iffy', and a bit of careful bashing waith the palm of my hand was necessary to get the thing to fully seat in. What I didn't initially realise was, in doing so, I cut my hand and started leaving a trail of spots of blood all over my fresh, clean white duvet cover! Damn, damn, DAMN! Not wanting to make things worse and definitely not wanting to mess up my brand new bed, in the absence of any plasters, I had to finish the job and make up the bed awkwardly wearing a pair of gloves! Humph. . finished dressing/making the bed up and then walked. Chilly and breezey with a clear sky, full looking moon and some quite big waves breaking on the rocks. . touched base with Mum . .TVd . . ate ham sandwiches with crisps . . touched base with BB . . TVd . . ate bowls of co-co pops . . TVd until bed, in my new bed, just after midnight.
27 - Woken by Sally barking at neighbourly coming and goings just before 9am! Blimey - almost nine hours - guess I caught up on yesterdays lack of sleep! Hopefully that also suggests the bed is acceptably comfortable. . walked in the sun and cool breeze . . PCd this and then somehow carried on messing around with the PC all day, experimenting with updating my site! . SH called to touch base . . .walked. A bunch of kids were all assembled in the gun emplacement, complete with a foot tall, bright red 'bong' for smoking their dope! Briefly stopped off at the store and then Mums on the way back home . . ate lettuce, bread rolls, tomato, corned beef and pork pies . . BB called . .TVd until bed around 11pm.
28 - Up just before 8am. . . PCd this watching BBC breakfast TV on the PC as I did so. . walked . . PCd and somehow ended up spending another whole day messing around with the website updating. . . walked and stopped off at Mums on the way home to see the 'cover for the pipes' she'd had a guy in to do. Not perfect but sure isn't bad and makes the eyesore of pipes beneath her new central heating boiler very acceptable. Nice job. . ate a couple of pork pies with chips and some chocolate. . BB called briefly . .TVd/PCd until deep into early. s
29 - Woken by Sally barking at the postman at - good grief - almost 10:30am! Heavy rain shower outside. What with Mum probably intending to pop in within the hour, I think for the first time in years, I am NOT going to walk Sally this morning. She's gonna HAVE to use the garden, like it or not. :o| It's LONG overdue, me facing up to denying her walks, to encourage her to do so. I think BOTH of us are getting a bit old, tired and achey for these long, twice-daily walks. I feel awfully guilty nonetheless!! . .PCd working on my possible site update . . Mum popped in with food donations for chats and coffee around midday . . . PCd the rest of the day away, skipping food again . . . walked . . ate Mum donated ham rolls etc around 11pm!!! . . touched base with BB before bed before midnight.
30 - Up around 8am . . walked. . .worked under the stairs and tidied up the ring main cable runs a little and managed to cram them into a spare piece of plastic trunking I'd removed from one of the bedrooms. . worked on the hole in the floor under the stairs which gives access to the underfloor space. Used some big joist-sized timber from the skip down the road and glued in a couple of pieces either side of the hole, mostly to protect the two pipes that run either side. Put in a lot of time and effort with the disc cutter/stanley knife/hack saw/chisels, etc, etc to make the hole through the floorboards look neater and more square. Used more wood from the skip to cut a couple of pieces (nothing large enough the right thickness to do it in one) to fit the new hole size and enable me to ditch the nasty old scrap of melamine chipboard that WAS filling the hole. It's still an awful squeeze to get down there (dictated by those underfloor pipe runs/joists), but now a little easier and safer. . added some cable clips beneath the floor and hooked up all the dangling cables out of harms way. . about to call it a day, I thought I'd do a quick experiment with the drill under the floor and see how difficult it's going to be to remove bricks and make an access hole (beneath the doorway) through to the underfloor area beneath the living room. Within perhaps ten minutes I'd carefully extracted my first brick. Wow - that wasn't too bad. Another house built with pretty weak mortar! Dared to keep on going and eventually managed to remove enough bricks to give a good opening. Of course it really should have a reinforced lintel put in above, but by leaving the top few runs of bricks untouched, and then on alternate rows removing one brick, two bricks, one brick etc, down to surface level, it should be more than safe enough. (Much safer than what some joker has done to the wall under the kitchen door which has left full unsupported bricks just hanging in mid air - which I'll have to attend to at some point!!). Is it possible? Oooh, oooh. More nasty 'potholing' stuff, but somehow it WAS possible for me to JUST squeeze through the gap I'd made!! (Blimey - I'm no wider than an average brick!) Yayyyy - I was under the living room floor!! WHAT a 'breakthrough'. lolol Really pleased. It's not something you want to be doing every day, but it IS now possible. :o) Now everything else I have to do with regard to the wiring, is totally 'possible'. Wow. I'd thought that 'breaking through' was gonna be a MUCH bigger job, and it'd been putting me off getting on with things. . eventually called it quits and cleared up the mess of tools all over the hallway floor around 6:30pm. . .walked . .ate lettuce, tomatoes, half a large pork pie, crisps and some chocolate . . TVd . . ate more chocolate before exhausted to bed just after 11pm. s