Tag Archives: bedroom

Thursday 23rd July 2020 – I’M WHACKED!

Yes, it’s been a very hard day today.

Having crashed out so definitively yesterday evening, I slept right through and even missed the third alarm. Only by a few minutes but nevertheless …

First task was to write up my journal from last night, in the middle of which Rosemary brought me a cup of tea. Even so, I managed somehow to crash out again.

Afrer breakfast we organised a few things and then set off.

First port of call was near St Priest les Champs to drop off the door. And as it happens, Rosemary knows the lady of the house so we had a chat for a while.

Second was Ingrid’s at Biollet where she made us a drink. We had a really good chat and then went round to pick up her trailer – a big single-beast trailer much bigger than I was expecting. But the bigger the better. I can fit more stuff in it.

caliburn trailer pouzol puy de dome france eric hallRosemary and I said goodbye to Ingrid and set off to my place.

Tons of stuff lying around there that was of no use to man nor beast and that was something that I was always going to do “tomorrow”. But it was depressing me seeing it all lying there like that so we heaved it all into the trailer regardless.

But as an aside, I need to work on my reversing. I’m somewhat out of practice and I made something of a dog’s breakfast getting the trailer down the track to my house.

les guis virlet puy de dome france eric hallOne thing that I wanted to do while I was there was to check on the pointing of the wall that I had built in 2012.

No cows in the field and no farmer about so we went in to check.

It’s all holding up remarkably well, all things considered, and I’m proud of the job that I did on that considering that it was my first proper effort at building a stone wall. But the joint between the lean-to and the main house wall is separating and if I do ever make it back I’ll need to refill that.

The dechetterie at St Eloy les Mines would be closed for lunch by now so we made our way back home for something to eat. Rosemary indicated some more rubbish that needed heaving into the trailer while she made the food.

This afternoon Rosemary had a bank appointment so I went off to the dechetterie where the old woman in charge directed me to the correct bay to unload it.

Back now to my house where I loaded up the trailer yet again. The concrete parking space is now clear of nonsense, some of the rubbish hanging around outside has gone too, and I’ve even thrown away some stuff in the verandah too. Plenty more to go at too, stuff that’s been hanging around for centuries and which probably will never be used..

bedroom les guis virlet puy de dome france eric hallWhile I was there, I went to check on the bedroom.

It seems to be unaffected by the rodent infestation so I spent some time in there sorting out some stuff in the wardrobes. There were a few bits and pieces that I wanted to collect that I’d stored in there for safe-keeping and so I rescued them.

The rest of the stuff that’s in there can remain for another day or until I move back down whenever

bedroom les guis virlet puy de dome france eric hallBut I do have to say that it was totally depressing to see the bedroom looking like this.

It took me four long years (not continuously, of course) to convert it from A RUBBLE-STREWN WRECK into wnat you see today, complete with fitted wardrobes and everything, and I was so proud of what i’d managed to build with my own fair hands.

And all in all, I reckon that I had no more than about three months’ use out of it before I was taken ill and rushed to hospital. That was the saddest part of all about this.

As for the attic, that’s had it, I reckon. And so has everything in there, I reckon. There’s little hope of salvaging anything from there although I did bring out a set of plastic drawers.

On the ground floor I did some tidying up – just a little. And there’s plenty more to go at in there too.

All in all, I could spend the rest of my life tidying up in there and still not see the end of it all. No matter what I did, I could never make that place look tidy

The dechetterie would be closed by now so I came on back to Rosemary’s, totally exhausted, with a full trailer behind Caliburn.

We had tea and a good chat, following which I had a shower and washed my clothes. And all of that was just as well too.

Plenty more work to do tomorrow- this little visit is far from over – not by any means. A good night’s sleep is called for so that I can be fighting fit. But there’s little hope of that.

Tuesday 31st July 2018 – MISSION CONTROL …

office bedroom place d'armes granville manche normandy france… is finally up and running.

This morning I brought up the wooden shelves and the fittings from Caliburn and then had an exciting couple of hours screwing them in place.

Once all of that was organised I then moved everything around to where I wanted it, having to make something on an adjustment to the storage of the LPs because they were too heavy for the shelf supports.

But then, that’s only a temporary thing because I’ll be copying them all onto *.mp3 in due course and then they can be moved on.

But it’s all very impressive, even better than when I had my office at Expo.

When the alarm went off this morning I wasn’t in much of a mood to leave my bed. It was round about 07:30 when I finally sorted myself this morning.

After breakfast I had another session on the European Photo Mountain for a couple of hours and that’s being reduced down to manageable proportions. Still a long way to go though, and I’ll probably be there doing that for several years.

While I was working on the bedroom I had a visitor. My neighbour brought back my pyrex dish from Sunday evening. She had a bit of a look around and gave it all the seal of approval. She loved the wood in the living room, and so do I. That’s why I bought it.

marite neptune port de granville harbour manche normandy franceFor lunch, I went and sat on the wall with my butties and book, and was joined by one of my lizards.

And that wasn’t all of my companions either. Marité has returned from wherever she went to, and we have the return of Neptune, which I predicted the other day.

They were loading up Neptune with the roadstone and so I went for a walk down there for a closer look.

low tide beach plat gousset granville manche normandy franceI had another session on the photos and then went for my afternoon walk.

The tide was right out as you can see. We’ve talked about the diving platform before and you’ve seen it almost submerged at high tide.

But here at low tide, you can see how far out the tide goes. Granville must have one of the highest tidal ranges in Western Europe.

Back here though, I had another disappointment.

There I was, working on the European Photo Mountain and a sudden wave of tiredness came over me. So I went for a lie down on the bed and the next thing that I remember, it was 19:45. I must have been flat out for over three hours.

As a result, I had a hurried tea of pasta and vegetables and then went out for my evening walk.

neptune ile de chausey granville manche normandy franceGribouille was out there waiting for a stroke, but even more interesting was to see Neptune out there on her travels.

Here she is, silhouetted in the sunset against the Ile de Chausey as she steams … “diesels” – ed … off towards Ridham, a small port near Sittingbourne in Kent.

That’s a new destination for her. Makes a change from Whitstable or Littlehampton.

So I’ll now have an hour or so’s work before I think about going to bed. But whether I’ll sleep of not is another thing. Having had that big sleep this afternoon was really the last thing that I wanted.

But then, it can’t be helped, I suppose. It’s a sign of the times.

neptune port de granville harbour manche normandy france
neptune port de granville harbour manche normandy france

low tide beach plat gousset granville manche normandy france
low tide beach plat gousset granville manche normandy france

Friday 27th July 2018 – I’VE FINISHED …

… all that I can do in the apartment right now.

I’ve fitted the kick panel in behind the desk so that I don’t make marks on the wall with my feet, and I’ve also brought up the two worktops that I bought the other day. The small one fits nicely on the small unit where there is the kettle and the coffee machine, and the large one is on the larger unit.

They are both drilled and screwed so that they won’t move, and for once in my life I now have a decent kitchen worktop where I can prepare meals and cook to my heart’s content.

It was a bit touch and go though, not helped by the fact that despite not going to bed too early, I was wide awake at 05:10 this morning and couldn’t go back off to sleep.

The morning though was quite relaxing and then I’ve spent most of the day going through the enormous piles of photos that have built up over the years. I’ve probably reviewed a few thousand of them but then again that’s just a small drop in the ocean.

Mind you, it’s really relaxing having a proper desk, a proper seat and a proper place to work.

At lunchtime I was making my butties ready to go out and sit on my wall, but a sudden rainstorm put paid for that. It rained for a good hour too and so I ended up eating my butties inside for a change.

casino beach granville manche normandy franceThe weather cleared up in time for me to go for my afternoon walk around the walls.

There weren’t the usual crowds out there today, which is hardly a surprise given the weather. But the tide was quite far out and you can see the diving platform and how far out of the water it is.

Makes quite a difference from high tide, doesn’t it?

Back here I carried on with my work and that took me right up to tea. And even though I now have my new super-duper worktop, I didn’t feel much like cooking. And so tea was pasta and vegetables with bulghour and tomato sauce.

rainbow pointe du roc granville manche normandy franceTonight there should have been a lunar eclipse. There were crowds of people out and about waiting for it but the south-east was heavily overcast and we couldn’t see anything.

That is to say – we couldn’t see anything of the moon. We did have occasional flurries of rain and all of this produced a really beautiful rainbow.

It’s not very often that you can photograph them so well.

sunset granville manche normandy franceHowever, away to the west, the clouds suddenly dramatically cleared, just like someone pulling apart the curtains.

And slowly the sun came down out of the clouds and into view.

So at least, the crowds who were waiting for the eclipse with a feeling of disappointment had at least something to watch as the day drew to a close.

suset ile de chausey granville manche normandy franceAnd as the evening drew on, the clouds lifted even more to the south-west and we could see more of the sun setting over the ile de Chausey.

There were still a few clouds low down on the horizon so we couldn’t see the sunset at its best but it was still good enough to keep us all entertained while it disappeared.

And then I carried on with my walk, being nearly squided by a motorist on a zebra crossing.

And when I told my friends that I had narrowly avoided being hit by a car, they all expressed their regret.

So having missed the eclipse, I came back here. I’ll be having an early night because tomorrow, I’m going on a picnic.

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

rainbow pointe du roc granville manche normandy france

rainbow pointe du roc granville manche normandy france
rainbow pointe du roc granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

rainbow pointe du roc granville manche normandy france
rainbow pointe du roc granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france
sunset english channel ile de chausey granville manche normandy france

Tuesday 24th July 2018 – I’VE HAD ANOTHER …

… bad day today.

Sitting down at the desk at about 14:30 this afternoon I was overwhelmed by fatigue. And not just a tiredness, but a completely “out-of-it” kind of tiredness. I had to lie down on the bed and that was where I stayed until 17:30 – completely out of it.

And it wasn’t as if I had had a late night either. It wasn’t as early as it might have been, to say the least, but it was nothing like as late a it has been just recently.

And once I’d gone to sleep (which didn’t take long) I was out until the alarm went off too.

Leaving the bed fairly quickly, I had the usual morning performance and then after breakfast I set about moving more of the dashcam files into the dedicated drive.

It didn’t take long to fill that drive and so in the end I had to dig out a big one that I bought a while ago and start to copy stuff from one drive to the other.

While that one was going on I had a shower and a tidy-up, and then wandered off to Brico Cash.

They had some kitchen worktops on special offer – 1m80 long for just €15:95 each. So I bought two of them. A few other bits and pieces too, but surprisingly, no black-faced melamine.

After I’d been to the Casino next door for a cucumber and a baguette I went to Mr Bricolage but they were closed. And then to LeClerc’s bricolage shop. And they didn’t have any black-faced melamine either.

And all this because I couldn’t buy a bed in light oak at IKEA last year. That’s why I ended up with a black one and why my bedroom has to be black.

What made this worse was that when I assembled the bed I found that it was indeed a light oak one that had been painted black. Quite a surprise because a light oak one wasn’t an option.

ferry ile de chausey granville manche normandy franceLunch was with two of my lizards (a third one was loitering in the undergrowth) and nothing much else, because there wasn’t much going on.

But just as I was about to pack up and go back to my apartment on eof the Ile de Chausey ferries came around the headland to give me a few moments of entertainment.

And then I came back to have my wasted afternoon.

Today’s task was to upload a pile of photos, edit them, and then start back on editing the blog to add the photos where I hadn’t done that, so that they can be brought up to date.

Tea was a stuffed pepper and spicy rice, followed by my walk around the headland.

As for the file transfer that I made earlier, this is going to take a while. I’m up to 26% so we’re talking about 3 days for this transfer.

But I shan’t be waiting for it. I’ll be going to bed. Despite having had a lengthy crash-out, I’m feeling rather tired. I just can’t keep going like I used to.

Sunday 25th December 2016 – SMAKELIJK!

Having worked to death the Crewe Bus Station toilets “Merry Christmas to all our readers” thing continuously over the past few years, we’ll talk about something else this year.

roast potatoes boiled carrots chicory leeks brussels sprouts onions seitan gravy christmas dinner leuven belgium december decembre 2016Like my Christmas dinner for example. Roast potatoes, boiled potatoes, carrots, chicory, leeks, seitan slices, onions, gravy and, of course, brussels sprouts. No Christmas meal is complete without them of course – properly cooked and not at all into a mush like most people cook them.

And it was absolutely delicious too, even if I had forgotten to add the garlic.

There was supposed to be Christmas pudding and soya custard for afters, but Alison had bought me a vegan chocolate Santa, and so that went down instead, washed down by a can of that alcohol-free raspberry beer.

Last night, we had the party at 05:00 but with my headphones on, I managed to avoid the worst of it. And it only lasted about half an hour anyway before boyfriend was escorted to the door.

And I was on my travels too. In some kind of Dragnet circumstance with two people, nominally police officers, but chauffeurs at where I worked. We had to go somewhere and we were told that we were to avoid a certain street which had now been converted into a dead end. So we set off, with me driving in an early 1950s Ford-type of sedan coloured a duck-egg blue and pale yellow. And sure enough, I missed the turning and ended up just where I’d been told where not to go. With two of us at the front and one at the rear, we picked up the car (which was now shaped like a canoe) and man-handled it through a tone-lined pond onto the main road. There, I pulled a bunch of weeds out of a garden there and was immediately confronted by the owner of the property who hadn’t wanted me to do that.

christmas lights grote markt leuven belgium december decembre 2016And so while you admire the rest of last night’s photographs, I can tell you that I was alone an breakfast, where there was nothing special arranged for the tenants.

And then down here, I unwrapped my Christmas presents.

Alison’s chocolate Santa I’ve already mentioned. But me, I bought myself a new laptop.

christmas lights grote markt leuven belgium december decembre 2016Actually, I bought it last year but what with one thing and another, I hadn’t opened it.

It’s another Acer, but a larger one with a numeric keypad and DVD player, and twice as much RAM as before.

You know that this one is not very good – it’s the slowest machine that I’ve ever used. It’s very lightweight and very economical, but the lack of speed was really getting on my nerves.

christmas lights grote markt leuven belgium december decembre 2016Transferring the files over is taking ages though. Not because it’s taking so much time (although it is) but I’m taking the opportunity to tidy up all of the directories while I’m about it.

It might be finished by tomorrow – who knows – and then I’ll have to start to clean up the storage issues that I have. I can save tons of space if I organise myself properly.

christmas lights grote markt leuven belgium december decembre 2016While I was making my butties at lunchtime (that’s a nice loaf that I have bought) I made the acquaintance of one of my housemates.

She’s a woman from Montreal, the Henri Bourassa area of the city, and so we had quite a lengthy chat (in French) about this and that. It was nice o remind myself of the city, seeing as how I’n not sure if i’ll ever be making it back there.

christmas lights grote markt leuven belgium december decembre 2016This afternoon I carried on with the new laptop and had a nice chat with Liz and her family on the laptop. Strawberry Moose joined in the discussion too, telling Dylan and Robyn how much he was looking forward to meeting up later next year.

And then, I went off to make my delicious tea.

Before I go off to bed for an early night, let me just tell you a little about something that I discovered last night.

Leuven is a really beautiful medieval Flemish city as you have probably seen, but 103 years ago, it was even more beautiful.

All of that changed in August 1914 when the Germans arrived, and in accordance with their policy of “Frightfulness” they set fire to the city centre, even burning the contents of the library that contained many of the oldest books in Europe.

And then in May 1940, they burnt it down again.

Many people, including, unfortunately, some of my acquaintances, criticise the French and the Belgian civilians for what they consider to be a “lack of resolution” in confronting the German Army

Leaving aside the fact that at least they were here, unlike the British Army that ran away across the Channel at Dunkirk, and the lack of resolution shown in the German occupied British territories such as the Channel Islands, where the civilian population sat it out with a German occupying force for 10 months after the War had passed them by, the British civilians never had to confront the issues that the French and Belgian citizens had to confront.

We’ve seen in the past the gravestones of civilians who died during both wars – gravestones marked “shot” or “executed” or “decapitated”. No British or American civilian ever had to confront that kind of treatment.

memorial plaque grote markt leuven belgium december decembre 2016Here in the Grote Markt in Leuven is this plaque with a list of names carved thereupon. 16 names, all civilians who were deliberately killed by the Germans in August 1914 as they were setting fire to the buildings of the Square.

This is the kind of thing that you find all over Belgium and France. Never mind being casual, haphazard victims of a bombing campaign or artillery duel, these civilians were simply purposefully murdered while going about their normal day-to-day duties and was a risk that every citizen in Occupied Europe had to run.

There was no escape.

Anyway, on that note, I’m off to do my washing up and then I’m off to bed. Will I have a good night tonight?

Monday 9th November 2015 – NOW, HERE’S A THING.

This morning while I was working on the computer, the temperature was such that I ended up opening the roof lights here in the attic. And I don’t recall ever having done that before in November (except when I had the fire burning – and just a reminder – I’ve yet to light the fire up here this autumn).

Yes, this weather is totally crazy and I’ve no idea what is going on with it.

I had a lovely night’s sleep and then came up here for breakfast and carrying on with my work. Studies first, and I’m a module or two behind. So I had to catch up with all of that before I could even start on this week’s sessions. But I am enjoying this course very much.

I had some other computing work to do, and I also made yet another exciting discovery with this 3D program that I mess around with some times.

I didn’t feel like any lunch and so I went straight outside (eventually) to work. I’ve repaired two flat tyres on the power barrow and pumped them all up to pressure – that Black and Decker portable compressor that I bought last summer is certainly doing the business. I started to dismantle the yellow wheelbarrow to fit the new wheel that I bought on Saturday, but the nuts were seized on and they took ages to free off. And I ran out of light while I was doing it, so that will have to wait until tomorrow.

I stayed working to 19:00 tonight, finishing by tidying up some more on the ground floor. And I can definitely see the table top in there now. It won’t be long before I end up with a place to work.

Up here I watched a film and crashed out, and finished off by having my lunchtime butties. I don’t seem to have the same appetite as before. And now I’ll take the stats, do the washing up and then go to bed. That’s me done for today.

Thursday 29th October 2015 – AND THERE I WAS …

… in Hong Kong Harbour last night (except that it wasn’t Hong Kong harbour at all but an artificial kind of canal system running between two rows of impressive houses like the boulevard that goes up to the railway station in Montlucon. Right down at the end of it, where I had my small bedsitter, was a British battleship that had suffered battle damage and had been brought in for repair. Around the corner came a Japanese heavy battle-cruiser which saw the British ship, steamed up towards it and from a range of about 100 metres gave it two turrets’ worth of high explosive armour-piercing shells that caused the British ship to sit on the bottom immediately.Even more exciting that this was watching the battle-cruiser screech to a stop about 10 feet before colliding with the British ship.

I decided to make myself scarce for a while. As an enemy of the Japanese, I’d be the first into the camp if they came ashore, and I couldn’t imagine the Japanese ship sitting here for very long in this narrow waterway, impossible to manoeuvre against a determined aerial attack.

So when I came back, not only where the Japanese and their ship still there, they had rounded up the crew of the British ship and marching them back to their ship, and beginning to comb the town using dogs.

This was where I realised what a fool I had been. I had remarked on coming back that it looked as if someone had tried my door, and now I knew – it had been set like that after I had left so that the Japanese would know that I had returned when I reset the door handle (which was exactly what I had done) and they would be here any second.

And so I fled for the hills. I encountered loads of British people who lived in grey concrete apartment blocks up there. All of them seemed to be resigned, cheerfully resigned to being captured by the Japanese and all that came with it, but if anyone thought that I was going to sit around calmly and wait to be taken prisoner they were completely mistaken. I was off.

There’s absolutely no doubt whatever that whatever happens and wherever I go when I’m deep in the arms of Morpheus is much more exciting than whatever happens to me in real life, is there?

And there must have been something going on, for this morning I noticed a trail of blood leading to and from the beichstuhl. It seems that during one of my nocturnal visits to ride the porcelain horse I must have cut my toe on something, yet I don’t remember a thing.

Anyway, last night’s voyages (both of them) were certainly more exciting than what happened today. I had breakfast and then I set to work on my next magnum opus. I told you yesterday that Amazon had discontinued its A-stores after all the time that I had spent in creating one before I went to Canada. Anyway, to cut a long story short … "hooray" – ed … I’ve started to build my own from scratch.

And, apart from a few interruptions here and there, that was all that I’ve done today. I’e not even been outside, except to take the stats tonight.

And Rosemary rang me again for another chat. Just as I was about to make my tea. We chatted for about an hour by which time the edge had gone off my appetite and I decided,to go to bed.

So where else is there to go tonight after Hong Kong yesterday?

Sunday 27th April 2015 – I WAS ON MY TRAVELS …

… last night too.

If you’ve ever seen the film Smokey and the Bandit you’ll remember the scene where the car transporter rips the door off the Sheriff’s car. Now I was at a similar site in an area of similar vegetation – a flat-bottomed river valley with a river (as you might expect), a road, a strip of vegetation of about 100 metres width and then a steep slope upwards with a winding side-road going up to the top.

I was here with a small army – a hundred or so men – and we were the rearguard installed here to hold off an advancing army. Every now and again, a lorry would come down the hill, take away more of our personal possessions, until in the end we had just the clothes that we were wearing, and some weapons and that was that.

What surprised me about all of this was the silence. I’ve never been anywhere or in any situation where there was such a complete and utter silence as we waited for the enemy to show up.

All of this goes to show just how deep my sleeping is and how comfortable my new bed is.

My lie-in lasted until about 08:50, which was nothing like enough as far as I am concerned, but again, I must have had a good night’s sleep.

After breakfast, I made a start on writing the radio programmes for the next series of programmes but my heart wasn’t really in it and I didn’t last long. I ended up watching Bala and TNS on the laptop and doing some more editing of old radio shows to extract more soundbytes.

So that was my Sunday – apart from the rain of course. 33mm fell during the course of the day and as I said yesterday, the big benefit of having the bedroom is that I can’t hear the rain falling on the roof when I’m in bed, like I could when asleep on the sofa bed in the attic. That’s definitely an improvement.

Saturday 25th April 2015 – IT RAINED DURING THE NIGHT

And here’s an added advantage about having a separate bedroom on the first floor, and that is that the rain cascading down on the roof doesn’t awaken me. And that’s certainly a bonus. I slept right through it, and as a result, the washing that I did the other day and which was hanging up outside had an unexpected rinse.

Now I’ll have to wait for another week or so for it to dry.

The 5mm of rain that we had filled up the water butts, and I do have to say that I’m catching much more water than I ever did before, since I repositioned the guttering the other day. That’s good news.

During the night I was on the move again – in a 2-door Cortina MkV saloon although while the main part of the body was MkV cortina, the roof was off a BMW 1602 or 2002 and the car didn’t ‘arf look weird. Being yellow and black, like my old taxis, didn’t help matters too much either.

I was in Crewe, driving up Market Street (before they closed it off) from Badger Avenue past the old Co-op place there and the left-hand lane was colsed off with crowd barriers, meaning that we were having some exciting incidents with cars and buses coming round the corner by the Grand Junction pub. There was a fire or something over on the left at the back of the Old Vine pub Right at the top of the hill (by now, in Stoke on Trent) I turned left and drove down a dead-end road onto an area of demolished houses and below me I could see a big factory with clouds of smoke billowing out of it. Chatting to some people, it turned out that the factory was burning a pile of wood and cardboard dummies as it didn’t need them and had no place to store them, and a group of people were heading off on foot down an old back-entry to go down to the factory for a closer look.

After another good night’s sleep and breakfast, I spent the day in the house and I’ve hardly been out. I’ve had a football day, watching Watford win promotion to the Premier leaguen by beating Brighton, and Barnet winning promotion to the Football League by beating Gateshead.

As well as that, I’ve been hacking bits more out of old radio programmes to make up some more soundbytes and I’m building up a nice library of them to slip into the radio programmes every now and again.

Now, I’m off for an early night and a long lie-in. I intend to make the most of my new bed and bedroom.

Friday 24th April 2015 – APART FROM HAVING …

… to leave my nice comfortable bed for obvious reasons during the night, I had the best night’s sleep that I have had for a century. It was wonderful.

I was out like a light, and was off on my travels too. I was at a Gothic cathedral somewhere in the UK auditioning singers to choose one to front a huge concert and trade show. And after having listened to all of them, I had the very disappointing task of announcing that there wasn’t one of them sufficiently good to be given the task. That was not a popular decision by any means.

From there, I went with Liz to the Trade Show. It was in a new all-glass exhibition hall and was on several floors, and packed to the gunwhales with people. We spent our time wandering around the mezzanine between the first and second floor looking at all the technology stands.

After breakfast I finished off the rock music radio programmes for the month of June, and then attacked the shower room. I’ve assembled the stud wall and screwed it into position. And I was right too – it’s much more solid than its predecessor.

I had to cut down a sheet of plasterboard while it was standing upright. I didn’t think that this would be very easy at all, to say the least, but clamping a long and heavy straight-edge in position where I wanted to cut – that simplified the task considerably and it’s not all that much more difficult than cutting it when its lying down on its back. It’s amazing how your technique adjusts itself when necessity is driving you forward.

So having screwed the first piece or two back on, I’ve made a start on constructing the new beichstuhl. This is going to be a permanent fixture instead of a “thunder box”, but the container can lift out and be taken downstairs to be emptied all the same.

I went to St Eloy for shopping this evening. There was no-one there whom I knew, and it was a comparatively cheap trip (apart from the fact that I treated myself to a couple of things in the “reduced” box).

And that is that. I’m off now for an early night in my lovely comfortable bed. It really is the business and I keep on sticking my head in there during the day, just to admire my handiwork.

That’s definitely a sign of contentment and, strange as it may seem to say it, I’m glad that I didn’t do it earlier as my technique a couple of years ago was nothing like what it is now. This is one of the reasons why I’ve dismantled the shower room and started again, and I do wish that I could restart the attic from scratch. Compared to the bedroom, the attic is something of a shambles.

I would love to do it all again.

Wednesday 22nd April 2015 – HAVE A GUESS …

bed bedding mattress les guis virlet puy de dome france… where I’ll be sleeping tonight!

We now have acquired a mattress (which cost more than everything else in the bedroom combined), a new sheet, new pillows, new quilt, new mattress cover, new sheet and new pillowcases. And I shall be in there in a very short space of time.

I’ve even had a shower (5 litres of hot water at 69°C out of the home-made immersion heater that I use as a dump load for the excess solar energy and poured into the solar shower at 32°C and the result was gorgeous) and a shave too. I’ll be nice and clean in there.

And no alarm either. I’ll be sleeping in there until I awake and I don’t care if it’s not until lunchtime either.

Many thanks to Terry who helped me bring the mattress into the bedroom. It had to come in through the window and that was something to which I was not looking forward. But with Terry, we had done it in 2 minutes, and then spent two hours chatting and drinking coffee.

And that reminds me – talking of coffee – I had the percolator running again – and twice too. Once for me at lunchtime and once when Terry came round. The weather was such that I could certainly spare the electricity.

This morning, I had another go with the weedkiller and then I used the wood treatment to cover the stud wall that I had built the other day. At least – I’ve not built the wall but everything is cut and shaped, and it was the pieces that I covered in wood treatment.

So I’m off to bed in a minute, and tomorrow I’ll let you know how the bed is.

Tuesday 21st April 2015 – AT LAST …

furniture in bedroom les guis virlet puy de dome france… we finally have some furniture in the bedroom.

The chest of drawers is a couple of years old, the chair and cushion is from last year, but everything else, including the fluffy carpet that you can’t see, is from yesterday.

No mattress yet, but that will be up there tomorrow one way or another and that will mean that tomorrow night will be my first night sleeping down there. I have new bedding as you know, and I’ll have a good shower too so that I’m nice and clean for my nice new and clean bedroom.

I spent all morning installing the bed, and that was much longer than it ought to have taken. However, one of the sets of laths was 80cms, not 70cms – misfiled by someone at IKEA I reckon, and as I had no intention of driving back to Clermont Ferrand, out came the chop saw and that dealt with that.

After lunch, I emptied out the two chests of drawers, cleaned them, dismantled them, took them downstairs and reassembled them. So they are in place now. And that took me nicely up to 18:20 when I called it a day.

During my lunch break I did another load of washing seeing as how we had a nice day, and I emptied out the beichstuhl – such delightful jobs that I have to do around here. And I also fitted into the lights under the eaves of the house two of the new LED lightbulbs that I bought yesterday. 1.7 watts each, so that’s an equivalent of about 20 watts of incandescent light, they are much smaller and weigh less than half of the weight of the usual LED light bulbs. So with these, there’s not that much risk of them falling out of the bulb holders.

After having crashed out for an hour this evening, I made another mega kidney-bean and aubergine whatsit, and I remembered to put the olives and peanuts in it too, which is certainly progress. That will do me for the next 3 days too.

But I forgot to tell you yesterday – something that I saw that goes to prove just how far ahead of the times that I am. In IKEA yesterday there were a couple of proud notices – “all the water in the toilets comes from the rainwater that falls on the building” and “all the hot water in the toilets is heated by solar energy”.

Well, regular readers of this rubbish will know that I have been doing this for almost 20 years. As I have said on many previous occasions … "and you’ll say it again and again" – ed … the world is slowly catching me up.

Saturday 28th March 2015 – I’VE BEEN CARRYING ON …

… the moving round of everything today, despite it being a Saturday.

I’m annoyed though that it’s taking me 10 times longer than I anticipated. I’m nowhere near anything like finished and that’s depressing. Mind you, I did find €2:12 in loose change mixed up in the pile of dust so I can’t say that it wasn’t rewarding. It works out at about €0.25 per hour and you can’t say fairer than that.

Anyway, the two wardrobes up here are emptied and dismantled, and all of the spare bedding has gone downstairs into the wardrobe in the bedroom along with the clothes that were hanging up.

I’ve swept up all of the dust where the wardrobes used to be and moved the desk into that space. That means that the alcove is almost empty and the water tanks can go in there whenever I’m ready to start the plumbing.

There’s tons more stuff to be moved out to the bedroom, and not only that, rearranging things has created piles more rubbish all of its own and all of this will need to be sorted out too.

This is going to take forever.

In between times I went to St Eloy for some shopping. Not to the Intermarche at Pionsat, you’ll notice. And there’s a reason for this. That is that I’ve been noticing a gradual increase in prices there. The fruit and veg are no longer affordable and the quality is going downhill rapidly. I don’t mind cutting down on quality if I’m cutting down on price, or paying more out for better quality, but this is starting not to work. I reckon that ocompared with the prices at the Pionsat Intermarche, I’ve saved about €4:00 on the weekly shopping bill.

At the footy tonight, Pionsat lost 2-0 to Montel Villosanges. No complaints about the result – the Chimps were easily the better side and Pionsat offered very little. The defence was quite rocky, with Matthieu in goal performing heroics to keep the score down, and the midfield and the attack were pretty ineffective. It’s all looking quite depressing.

I was on my travels again during the night. I was with the two guys with whom I played bass in a rock group in the 1970s. We were going somewhere in Bill Badger, the A60 van that I had in those days, and we had a pile of scaffolding to move so we were loading it up on the roof of the van. Ohh happy days!

Friday 27th March 2016 – WE NOW HAVE …

varnished floor skirting board les guis virlet puy de dome france… a fully-varnished floor – three coats of varnish on there and I hope that that will do the trick and seal it all properly.

It does look nice, I do have to say. And at 90 minutes per coat, so it ought to. It’s much better than my first idea of putting laminate over the old floorboards and I do wish now that I had done this in the attic.

You’ll also notice the skirting board. That’s fitted all of the way round now. Glued and nailed on two sides, and just nailed on the third side whzre it’s packed out from the wall. I had some long nails and they went through the packing and right into the battens up against the wall, so the tack nails will hold the skirting board to that. Which is just as well, because this glue is rubbish. More Brico Depot garbage.

glass pane in frame above door bedroom les guis virlet puy de dome franceWe also have a glass pane in the frame above the door.You can see the transit sticker on there, which I left on for the purpose of the photo.

What astonished me was that I managed to bring it home the other day, carry it upstairs via the obstacle course downstairs and then fit it into position, without dropping it or otherwise breaking it. That has to be somethig of a first.

clothes rail wardrobe bedroom les guis virlet puy de dome franceAnd this is certainly progress.

We have some clothes rails now in the wardrobe/ I’ve emptied one of the wardrobes in the attic and hung the clothes in the wardrobe. This is a sure sign that the work has practically come to an end in the bedroom.

I’ve started to dismantle the big wzrdrobe in the attic, and I’ll finish that off, empty the other one and dismantle that, and them move the rest of the clothes and the chests of drawers downstairs too. I can’t believe how much room I’m going to have in the attic when I’ve done that.

It was however astonishing to see how much dust had accumulatred under the wardrobe. It was a case of shovelling it out rather than brushing it out.

Last thing was the shower. The verandah was a warm 24°C and the water was a hot 59°C so a heated shower was absolutely gorgeous. Now I’m nice and clean, with nice clean clothes and nice clean hair.

How long can I keep this up?

Thursday 26th March 2015 – ONE MORE COAT …

… of varnish on the floor and the varnishing will be finished. Every vertical surface has already had two coats of varnish, and every horizontal surface three, except of course the floor. And that will be done first thing tomorrow morning.

That new varnish from Mr Bricolage seems to be okay- it needs a really good mixing but then it spreads quite nicely. I’ll have to remember that varnish next time I’ll be varnishing.

That really is all that I’ve done today – as if that isn’t enough. You’ve absolutely no idea of just how much bare wood there was in that bedroom and it took ages to do. But it all looks so nice now and so it was well-worth the effort.

Tomorrow, once the varnish has dried, I’ll be fitting the skirtung board and then trying to install the glass over the door without dropping it. Putting the hanging rails in the wardrobe will be the final job and that bedroom will finally be finished. I can then move all of the clothes and the chests of drawers down there, and my attic will be so much emptier.

That’s not quite true. I need to sort out the lights in there. At the moment there are just some LED lightbulbs dangling from the ceiling and I’m not sure what I can do to make that look pretty. I have one or two ideas and I’ll have to see how they pan out.

I had yet another small fire in here tonight seeing as the temperature was just 14.9°C. That’s 2°C higher than my threshold temperature, but I made a huge pepper and chickpea curry tonight and that cooks nicely in the oven, so why not light the fire and be comfortable while i’m doing it? And it took the leftover wood from yesterday, a floorboard offcut and half a log. Talk about cheap cooking and heating.

Yes, this little wood fire with tiny oven is the best thing that i’ve ever purchased for here.