Another one of those busy weeks and I am off to London for a couple of days so all in all, time is short. I have had a domestic time painting my bedroom for starters. Had not been done for some time and was really grubby. I did my usual faffing about with tester pots galore and then winded up picking something on the spur of the moment. I decided in the end on a paint called Cornflower White thinking that it would be a white paint with a dash of blue in, well you would wouldn't you? So a tad surprised when it turned out to be a pale blue-grey, where the white came into this is beyond my comprehension. Am thinking of writing off to Dulux and asking them just where WHITE features? Still, I decided to stick with it and now that it is done, it looks rather nice and with gleaming, gloss paintwork it looks good. I used to climb up ladders to paint ceilings but no more thank you, and I invested in one of those long pole thingies with a roller on the end which worked like magic and did the ceiling in 15 mins flat.
I took three days to do the room and ended up sleeping on the sofa bed one night surrounded by detritus and furniture from the bedroom. I do hate having the flat in a mess. Anyway all done now, just touched up the ceiling this morning where, no matter how hard one tries, the other colour gets on it in little dabs. New curtains up, new throw for bed on its way and then I will add colour with some cushions etc.
And then I turned to my next big project - having the flat carpeted. Have been saving up for this for a few years and now that my painting projects are all done, this is the next to be done and after dithering and faffing, again, I picked a nice neutral carpet and that is being laid next week so two more days of total disruption. Oh how I hate it but I know it will be worth it in the end.
Now in the middle of all this the radiator in my bathroom conked out. Gosh I know you are saying to yourself, Can this Post be any More Exciting? I guessed the heating element in it needed to be replaced and this threw me completely as the last time it went I had an electrician see to it for me, but decided that it was time I Got a Grip and did it myself. So off to B&Q and found what I needed and came back. Got out the instructions and came to a grinding halt as I could not get the nut holding the element in to shift one iota. In the end my neighbour came in with a huge spanner and a tin of some gunk that greased the nut and after about ten minutes we got it loosened and out gushed all this disgusting black water. Luckily, I had put a basin underneath. Put the new element in, wired it all up and then switched on flushed with success. Nada, nothing. Left it an hour and then asked another neighbour, an electrician, if he would check it for me and yes the wiring was OK, he tested it with some electric thingy and yet nothing happened. Decided to leave it and then re-read the instructions. And what did I see at the bottom? DO NOT TURN ON THE THERMOSTAT BEFORE PUTTING WATER INTO THE RADIATOR. Yes, you have guessed it I had forgotten to put the water in.....
So off this morning to get yet another heating element having totally buggered up this one and back I came and out came the screwdrivers again and off I went. Did it stage by stage and filled it up and switched on, sat back and prayed and EUREKA success, it started to heat up and is now chuntering away merrily. OK it cost me twice as much as it should have because of my stupidity but I feel very pleased that I now know how to do this myself and when my neighbour said I had wired it up very well, was inordinately proud. The thought did cross my mind that it would be nice to have a man around to do this sort of thing, but then recalled that I used to do it even when I did have a man around so stop moaning....
In the middle of all this domesticity, I have been collapsing on the sofa at regular intervals with the Reacher books of Lee Childs as you can no doubt see from the blog. I have them on my Kindle and I am really really enjoying them, pure escapism and will be writing about them all later. I am also reading The Flowers of Evil by Simon Acland, the sequel to his first novel The Waste Land and will be posting about that in due course. In between read That Woman by Anne Sabba, yet another biog of Mrs Simpson, Duchess of Windsor which is immensely readable and got through it pretty quick. This was tied up with a doco on TV about some newly discovered letters of Mrs S which certainly make for interesting reading. Again, more of that later.
Then last night I listened to the Hooray for Hollywood Prom on R3. I had applied for tickets for this but was unlucky, I gather it sold out in four hours, which really made me cross but that is the luck of the draw. Great concert, though I felt it really only got going in the second half with a stonking rendition of the Serenade from The Student Price with lush orchestration and choir which brought the house down. It is on BBC this week and will be recorded by me for all posterior and will be tremendous to watch.
OK Boring post over - London for the next two days, to see Florence, meet up with a friend or two for fun and frolics and will be back on Thursday evening.