I’m a very happy person – my washing machine is now plumbed into place. I no longer need to wander like some itinerant washer woman clutching our unwashed laundry in search of someone who will let me borrow their machine. Whilst many of my direct ancestoresses were laundresses it doesn’t mean I want to channel them or indeed Mr Toad escaping prison for that matter.
Whilst we are on the subject of water, I am temporarily doing the washing up in the bathroom…doesn’t everyone? On account of the fact that we once again badly miscalculated how long it would take HWIOO to fit the kitchen. Last time he did it in two days – so I thought a week but I hadn’t accounted for the fact that for every day HWIOO works there is a day of rest to be considered. In addition there’s the brain fog. This means that instead of being precise and organised and several steps ahead of me I am often called upon to check everything is set out in the right order before HWIOO gets started or that he’ll be half way through a job and then realise he’s forgotten something. He finds it all very frustrating but it’s something that both of us just have to come to terms with. It looks like being two weeks and that’s not counting the tiling.
Talking of which I have had my choice of tile curtailed. It was pointed out to me that the lovely Moroccan pattern that I liked would have been a nightmare to grout and we’re not repeating that experience apparently (I can’t imagine why) so I have opted for a chequerboard pattern of green and creamy yellow tiles which do not have bevelled edges or any embossed patterns that will need time and attention lavished upon them. Photographs edge ever closer.
Once the work surface is fitted I can begin to empty some of my boxes which will enable me to unearth my craft knives in one of the boxes behind all the kitchen paraphernalia which will enable me to cut the silhouette I want to make for the cover of my ebook which I will then be able to upload. More progress.
Perhaps by then I will have heard back from my lovely organiser at the WEA who is trying to find me six dates across the coming academic year for a range of day schools on topics as diverse as the Pastons and Hans Holbein. There’s also the local newspaper I submitted an article to in response for their advert for regular columnists to be considered…how long do you leave it before writing a politely worded email asking the editor for some feedback or simply sending another email with another article? I mean, there’s option 1 – perseverance that could ultimately be rewarded with a regular history column yielding more speaking engagements and a gateway to a publisher possibly or option 2- mad woman whose emails the editor permanently blocks. I’m aiming at option 1 rather than option 2 by the way.
At the same time as trying to reinvent myself as a successful writer and guest lecturer I have started painting the courtyard- the same colour as it was before I hasten to add on account of the fact that we live in a conservation area and there are rules about what you can and can’t do with your exterior masonry. Our next door neighbour wanted to re-render the exterior of his house and then to repaint it in white and blue. It took in excess of six months, many phones calls and much cash to produce the end result. We have enough complication in our lives without the council becoming involved. Once I’ve painted the walls which currently involved mortaring some of the wall that has previously been excavated by my more enthusiastic chisellings and then shifting the debris that’s being stored out there I can ask HWIOO to fix my washing line – oh joy unbounded – I hope by then I also have a functioning kitchen sink but I’m not going to hold my breath as I know I’ve got to allow more time than I think – so double it and then double it again whilst hoping that HWIOO doesn’t do his overstretched piece of elastic impersonation which requires at least a week of sleep – Rip Van Winkle style.