We Built A Shed!
This week Paul and I did the most important thing you can do before major surgery. We built a wood shed! It took three days, and then we moved large piles of timber around. This is also an important pre-surgery task.
we dig a number of deep holes. We didn't use any concrete for the poles, because we didn't have any. Instead we dug narrow, half metre deep holes. There were lots of rocks. One rock was the size of a small piece of furniture. It took us quite some time to disinter that one. We set the poles in straight and held them upright with timbers while we piled rocks and clay back in. It is a little discouraging to fill up a hole you have spent an hour digging..
Here is me taking a little break from digging and hoping it might be cup of tea time. It isn't.
Now it is cup of tea time as you can see from lack of humans in the frame.
End of Day 1, and we have roof beams and those bits that go in between the beams, which no doubt have a technical name. Possibly rafters?
Every night I have ever spent with Paul includes a break for wine and toasting Monsieur Soleil as he sets behind the hills.
Day 2: We start with the framework of poles which went up yesterday. It's roof day!
I help Paul with the first couple of sheets of roofing iron. It is iron which Paul snaffled when his sister down in the village had a new roof put on her house. In fact, this whole shed is made from bits and pieces from the property. We did not go to a shop once to get this shed built. We love building with what we have. It is a creative challenge.
In the afternoon I cleverly had an important appointment, going to a ceramics class with Paul's mum. She is a wonderful potter, and I am loving spending time in her studio doing some creating with clay (as opposed to digging it out of the ground and putting it back in again as we did yesterday). When I get home in the dusk, the roof is done, and Paul has strung up fairy lights and is waving his brandy glass at me.
Here is the underside of the roof, taken the next morning as I begin to fill the shed with wood.
Day 3: The horizontal posts to keep the wood in the shed go on. Paul starts nailing on a vertical balustrade, and then rushes off to do the seventy other things on his list. We'll finish that one day, maybe three or four months from now. I throw all the wood into the new shed. It is done!
Over the next two days we cut great big enormous amounts of wood, move a lot of Really Useful Bits of Wood around into miscellaneous piles, make bread and gather for lovely family dinners. Here is Paul, a very happy man with a shed he built with his own two hands out of bits and pieces he has been saving for just such an occasion.
Finally we got to this afternoon where everything that had to be done was done, and those things that really didn't have to be done, well they get to go on the list of Things To Do in Spring. Paul hopped on his motor bike for one last ride, then drove it up to his mum's place for her to take care of for the next few months. Maybe she will ride it when no-one is looking, but the motor bike pants are going to be a bit long for her.
Here we are about to drive back to my place, known by us as the city cottage, having our photo taken in Paul's mum's green garden. Paul and I rarely have our photos taken. We are not very good at it and tend to look in opposite directions.
Tomorrow morning we will walk down the hill to the hospital at a quarter to seven. Paul will begin a big adventure which he will miss completely, being quite asleep, and I will go up to Paul's mum's place and do some pottery with her, and maybe, who knows, start with a little thimbleful of gin which helps in such situations.
Paul's surgery will be over mid-afternoon. I'll leave an update in the comments. Lastly I want to thank each and every one who has left kind comments, funny stories, helpful advice and supportive emails. It does make an enormous difference to know there is a very loving group of far away friends thinking of us here. We are very fortunate indeed to have loving family and friends far and near to help us through life's bumps and hollows.