Friday, February 29, 2008

Quickly following on from the earlier post [since I appear to be on a roll] my roadtrip for mid March was precipitated by all the hassle I'd been having earlier in the year. The choice of dates was predicated by a sale that travelodge was having. C'mon you can't grumble at a room at Kew Bridge, London for two nights at 25 notes a night! I asked Sian if she wanted to come along, yes please she said a couple of days away will be nice. So there we were.

Then Sian called and told me she had to use up a [paid for already] week before the end of March on her holiday timeshare club thing and how did a week in Madeira sound. It sounded excellent to me and if it was tagged onto the two days in London then we could make a real holiday of it. All fine and dandy. I checked out free flights. Sian did the money bit and got a night at a Gatwick hotel and paid for it all [yes I'd be paying for my whack] and so I ordered some guide books and got ready for a marvellous holiday.

A couple of days later I popped in to see here on my way back from a job and found here looking somewhat pensive. After weeks of avoiding contact, ignoring texts and emails, some plaintive, some abusive fom 'He who shall never be named' aka the 'friend' of last summers trauma she'd given in an allowed him back into her life, and the odds were that he would be going to Madeira not me....

I was incandesant with rage. It was all I could do to keep a lid on things and get out of there before I really blew up. To be given a load of shit from someone you regard as one of your best friends is bad, but can be repaired, as we had done previously. But to them be subjected to it again, after all the crap that had been taking place for the last 18 months was too much.

I sent an email, in which I treid to be constructive and decent, pointing out the why's and wherefore's of what had happened before, and asking why she was treating me like this

No anwer. So I sent another copying what she had said only a few days before. Still no answer. By now I was getting more and more angry again. so it was another email-

No answer. But late on the following Sunday I got a call from her. A little voice, basically saying sorry and I was right all along, because he's more or less arrived, stayed and then sought to dominate every aspect of her life, which was'nt good. When he resorted to force, she suddenly saw the light and saw him as the manipulative manevoelent force he was. Luckily he went and comparitive peace now reigns.

We're off to Madeira again and things between us are as good as they will ever be. But she's not forgiven, and any repeat of this ort of thing again, she'll have lost a good friend, and she knows this.

Hopefully the Madeira report will be sweetness and light...phew.

It’s not quite March 1st

As usual I’ve been somewhat tardy in keeping this blog, this diary, this stream of consciousness up to date in any meaningful way. Last autumn I ended an entry with these words:

I have the Snowshoe to finish/finesse, a sailing kit to build for the Prospector, the rear garden to clear prior to my next Big Project.. the building of the shed/summerhouse/guest accommodation/ office.

Well guess what?

True to form none of these things have come to pass. Yet for once I have an excuse!

In early January I awoke to a horrible sulphurous smell which seemed to be coming from the fireplace. I could’nt track this until I brushed my hand across the chimney plate. Wow, was it hot. With care and a pair of ovengloves I managed to remove the cast iron chimney piece from the woodburner and had a look inside the stone chimney. There was a large burning mass of something horrible. I hooked it out into an iron bucket and dumped it outside where it continued to smoulder and burn for hours.

I concluded that this was tar and particulates condensing in the chimney and burning up. I was lucky not to have a full scale chimney fire. Cleaning it to a full day and I’m not 100% happy. So it looks like I’m going to have to spend a few hundred on lining the chimney. However doing without heat through the coldest winter months is’nt an option either. So for now it’s going to be small fires and a closer look come summer.

If that was’nt enough hassle, the toilet blocked, and I had to have the septic tank pumped out. The kindly farmer who owned the field refused to allow the tanker to go in, so a smaller towed unit was required, which, perversely, cost a lot more. Said tanker arrived and was refused access. I was at home , recovering from a dose of the V&D bought on by eating some seafood, and so had to help the tanker guy run 70 odd foot of large bore pipe over and around my neighbours back garden, rather than the 15 it would have taken. In the process we discovered that the garden decking bearers were no longer doing their job, so all these will need replacing…………

Basically, all within a week of each other I have amassed a bill, both potential and actual of around a £1K, which has effectively ended my plans for the shed, at least for now.

I was so fed up that I decided that the only recourse was to indulge in a ‘ROADTRIP!’ before Easter, but even this was to turn into a nightmare of angst and recrimination, and it has’nt even happened yet!