This has been a busy week one way and another. HWIOO has become convinced that he’s doomed to spend the rest of his life applying small bevelled tiles to uneven walls. On the plus front, at least I think it’s a plus, he’s discovered that the pinhole effect was entirely due to the brand of grout that he was using. Let’s just say that its got their name on it. Having used it all up he changed over to a brand that he had to mix up himself. It glided between the tiles smoothly and almost effortlessly – more importantly there wasn’t a pinhole in sight.
That done he’s put on the bath panel, silicone sealed and has applied the first coat of paint to the window sill which he has also cut and shaped then fixed in place. He’s also filled in the gap between the dining room and the kitchen so that I don’t have a mini trench between the two. Before you ask he’s only been allowed to work and sleep this week with time off for good behaviour to watch the odd football match. The reason for this is that the vinyl for both the bathroom and kitchen are coming very soon – and then there may be photos but not before. There will also be a fully functioning bathroom and kitchen which I would have to say is a very nice thought indeed.
The lovely Firemen fire installers came yesterday and created a lot of dust. Apparently it’s quite difficult drilling through two hundred year old stone walls to add a ventilation brick. We also have a carbon monoxide alarm – I dread to think what folk did when the house was first built. But before all of that the chimney stack had to be pressure tested. Checks were made – which involved one of the aforementioned Firemen shimmying up into the loft, They were slightly flummoxed though. There are three flues – ergo three fireplaces. Two are immediately obvious but they still haven’t worked out where the third fireplace once was. In fact they asked whether we had a cellar.
I was very pleased to report not – I once had romantic aspirations towards a cellar filled with lovingly laid down wines and home made jam. The reality was an infestation of slugs and in bad winters an indoor swimming pool that a hippo might have felt comfortable wallowing in, provided they didn’t mind the fact that the electric meter was dangerously close to the water line – so no, no cellars.
The really good news was that after two hundred years the chimney stack is in excellent nick. No liner was required. Thereby reducing the bill by exactly half. Huzzah. The fireplace is now installed – and it’s starting to look good but still no photo because the concrete needs to dry before we put the ashpan and fender in. I’d also like to have painted the chimney breast.
Whilst all this frenetic activity was going on I went out into the courtyard to prepare the walls for a coat of paint. I thought it would be a hour’s job involving a broom and a wire brush. It was for two out of the three walls. On the third wall I may have become slightly carried away. Let’s just say that I’ve exposed some lovely brick work including the remnants of an archway which will look super once I’ve pointed it up…no, it wasn’t thanks to a broom and a wire brush. I may have become enthusiastic with a hammer and chisel. This now brings the number of unexpected doorways to four. I don’t think there are any more but there again I am apparently missing a fireplace. And really the cottage just isn’t that big that I’d absentmindedly fail to notice an additional room.