I used to suffer asthma as a child. Dust and mold would set me off, especially this time of year.

I used to do a lot of casual agency labouring, The deal was any work had to be paid for a minimum of 4 hours. I was often sent to places that had almost no work, but they would rather sign off a full day than admit to their own bureaucrats that they had not needed the already agreed budget.

When I was sent somewhere that had no work I was never happy pretending. If I have set myself for work I would rather work than not.

Having no washing machine to plumb in I decided to do cleaning that had not been done for decades.

I moved the bed head, of the bed I sleep in, away from the wall. I then vacuumed the floor and wall (the ancestral home of generations of spiders were destroyed) then mopped the wall and ceiling with detergent and bleach.

It did not take many hours, but I was wheezing by the end. Not asthma wheezing, more like a daytime tv American comedy show wheeze, but a wheeze never-the-less. I took sloe gin, and sloe brandy, and wine, and that seemed to work.

I also helped ma to start salting the brisket on the bone (6 Ilbs) and small blade of shoulder of lamb I bought at John Kearns in Shipley. It takes half a pound of salt, same of dark brown sugar (I got that yesterday at the same time as the Chinese take-away) with a teaspoon of saltpetre (which is vital if the meat is to keep its colour) mixed up and then rubbed into the meat. I mixed them in the big plastic box ma has then ground the meats against the mix. You then add just a cup full of water to the box and put a heavy weight on top of the meat. I washed a brick and put it inside a big tin baking thing.

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.