I have found a few moments for a little reflection before a badly needed day off tomorrow. Not that we are a little weary here, but there hasn’t been a lot of conversation as Mike and I sat quietly in our respective chairs pretending to watch TV before deciding it was respectably late enough to retire for the day. I’m glad I have found a tricky suduko to distract me from the general (salute, Tom) sense of exhaustion. Since I last wrote, we have entertained two groups of horse riders from the nearby stables, both of which were complimentary about the location of the manor and what we are trying to achieve here – which was music to our tired ears.
On Thursday, Mel, Adrian and I made further inroads into the bramble feature slope whilst Mike finished off the stud wall for the stairwell and helped the boiler man site the really rather impressively large new boiler. On Friday, I started to prepare the 20 windows (yes, 20!) for priming, and painted waterproofing solution onto the walls beneath the windows whilst Mike set the new kitchen door into its frame and fitted the various fittings.
Today, Saturday, Mike fitted insulated plaster board to the walls beneath the windows and then cut and fit the window boards, whilst I primed the kitchen door and new window in the store-room-to-be.
As I finished an hour before Mike today, I treated myself to a little light weeding, and primped the beds we put in by the bar a couple of months ago and – if I say so myself – they are looking particularly lovely at the moment.
Hopefully the photos will show that it now appears we are making some progress. We are working methodically -we hope- to eliminate possible future sources of problems (e.g. waterproofing a wall which shouldn’t need it, but as it had been very damp when we arrived it seemed a sensible precaution) as well as thoroughly insulate as we go, and in several areas now walls are ready for a plaster and skim so that they can dry out before decorating. Still a few dirty jobs to go, then, before we can start consulting colour charts but at least that is now vaguely on the horizon.
Over the last week, we have given further consideration to the timing of this venture and reluctantly have to accept that we will not be able to open the kitchens (and thus the full offering in the informal restaurant) by end July. It looks increasingly as though the earliest we could open the restaurant will be approx. 17th August but we will keep this date under review and post further details as soon as we have them.