October 2011


On the return of Bev’s she told me that she missed the sense of danger that came with watching the news or adverts with me with the sound turned on; with her never knowing when the loose cannon would go off.

OK trip, although the washing machine finally arrived at ma’s a few minutes after I set off. I could not have done anything as regards getting it fixed I might have been able to start her education with an automatic.

I offered advice about best thing to see in London (the Sir John Soane Museum, Lincolns Inns Field) to someone on the train to Victoria, who may have been called Rebecca, I do remember she did start at County Antrim before living in the States.

I then got the tube to Euston, having some time spare. The British Library did not open until 11.00, and there was a big queue, so I sat in the weak sun outside and read the Buses magazine I bought at Three Bridges, then went and spent the money I have not spent on drink today in Frontline books. Dictionary of Tommies’ Songs and Slang, 1914-18. Brophy & Partridge, 2008, republished from 1930. Has already made me laugh out loud.

Sat with a nice family on the train from Kings Cross. I am sure the 6 year old lad would have accepted Buses from me. but his dad drives a bus and did not want it in the house.

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I only did a few hours work today but they left me shattered. I used the Borsh to cut a third off the kitchen unit door (including the metal handle strip), trim the already cut unit, and cut a hole for the new washing machine’s plug through the thick work-top (after drilling five holes).

I then refitted the end wall of the unit with a drill and a hammer and re-hung the door; then sanded and vacuumed.

All other plans for the day were then abandoned. Exhaustion would have made the last bits of cutting dangerous, if the tool was a jig or circular saw, and was still getting risky.

The result is good of all the work is good. It is not perfect, and I doubt the drawer would work if I cut that down, but ma still has a usable cupboard, and the worktop is supported. The representative of the firm sending a man to fix the tap and trap for the washing mating, and replace taps ma can nolonger turn, never got the difficulties with making a space for the machine. The unit I have been working on could not be just taken out, and even if it could there would then be nothing holding the worktop up.

It is a bit off a shame I could not do the plumbing as well, but getting the time at the right time is a bit of a nightmare.

I have been doing some reasonably hard physical work lately.

Growing up in one house and revisiting it until age can be a bit of a beggar, psychologically, and physically if you are allergic to mold spores and got massive asthma attacks in youth and sneezing fits in age, but at least you notice stuff.

I noticed today that the garage had sunk. I remember it being built when I was about 10, especially my dad wheelbarrowing ready-mixed concrete to help lay the drive and garage base (and I bet he paid the ‘builder’ bloke over the odds, and his wheelbarrow was tiny compared to the builder’s).

The concrete was laid in three sections: flat parking space and garage base, and a sloped section between the two. Today I tried to open the front door of the garage and it jammed on the lip of the rise. Although it was always higher than the base it did open, and the door is still true, so the base must have sunk. I got the mattock older than me out of the garage, it has a handle as bent as a bow (one of the many shit tools, inheritances and presents that filled our house), and ma told of it coming from the Welsh official grand father. I used it to chip the concrete lip. It was wonderfully satisfying, and I did a good job.

I had to open the door to shift the twintub washing mating ready for collection, using the sack trolley I bought at Lidl the first time I came back from London yesterday, which I carried back on the bus and then balanced on my head.

I have also bought a Borsh 180 multi tool (ma paid as a Christmas present) two days ago, which has allowed me to cut a third of a kitchen unit off so there is space for the new washing machine, and cut holes for the water feed and waste water pipes.

I am a bit tired.

PS, I have lost the £4.17 credit I had on Skype because I have left it so long, and the password my computer remembers is wrong. No matter as Skype is total shite anyway. The terms and conditions are not as evil as facebook, but at least facebook has not taken any of my money, yet.

I have been to a meeting in London, at the Chandos near Charing Cross twice. First time I got to the Chandos R 11.30 I realised that I did not have John’s number; and I have no mobile internet access.

I travelled back to my computer to do the checking of e-mail I should have done this morning, despite trying to figure out how to burn a dvd from iMovie and fending off having to deal with my mother’s latest worry wart.

The e-mail revealed I should be in the Chandos at 17.00 rather than have been at 12.00. I got a taxi back to Three Bridges, got on a train, but discovered it was one of the two trains a day to Bedford that do not call at London Bridge,. I then walked from Blackfriars via the Temple’s.

I would happily meet with John regardless of gain, but I may now gain work from meeting him.

Also called in at the Harp and the Porcupine.

Was so low in sugar I had flashing lights on Arden Road, but am now fine; and the adrenalin and rushing means the alcohol has probably been burnt.

My old lady got stuck in the lavortry
Till 4 big firemen came and set her free
And saved Bev from a flush of despair

Ma has been verging on illness for a few days, although that has not stopped her carrying gallon jars of wine and cider about and syphoning them when I am out. More distressing for her than the possible illness is the fact that her hands are getting badly arthritic; so bad that there will be no more knitting, so the cardy and jumper heritage is now just what there is left from the moths.

After years of effort on mine and my brother’s part today I got a definite date for her first automatic washing machine, within the week as well. At the same time she will be getting lever taps.

I have not done much these last few days apart from cook for my mother and me, and try and sort out the old ibook so she has a chance of using it.

Ma had got out a rump steak for Sunday dinner. I cooked using this Delia Smith recipe. It was the best steak I have ever cooked. Unfortunately ma announced she could not eat steak because she has not got her new bottom denture yet!? Fortunately she had some prawns in the fridge,which I forced on her, mixed with the sauce. She enjoyed that.

Unfortunately the Aligot (Mashed Potatoes with Garlic and Cheese) from Delia proved to be a bit of a sod. It uses an electric hand mixer, which is not the same and the single handed, single whisk thing I bought ma last year. It did not have the power and the lack of contra-rotating blades meant more than the average amount of potato found walls, work top and clothes.

The old ibook was a bit of a chore. I cannot find a duplicate remover that will work with OS 10.4.7. I also cannot get on apple app store with it. It is old, and it heats up, but usable’ leastways it was before I made it, supposedly, easier to use. The bloody thing keeps moving the cursor to earlier in the text for no reason I can figure, and highlighting and deleting things as it does, whilst cing which window is is at the front.chan I supuld be an excuse for bad pose it co and spelling, but that is a poor reason for having something that makes me even more than usually unintelligible.

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