Les poissons en France

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

In the Groove

I've got to the 'messy' part of the stairs now.  Yesterday I cut the sides to size, which involved more brain power as, because the beam on the 'bridge' isn't parallel to the step in the hall, one of the sides of the stairs is longer than the other.
So today I've been routing the slots for the treads in the first side.
These slots will have to be finished with a chisel but, as we've friends coming for lunch on Sunday, the housekeeper wants the dust to have settled before then!  And there's lots of dust!!!!
You'll notice that I'm wearing goggles.  I was getting dust and chips of wood in the eye so I thought it would be prudent to put the goggles on.  In doing so I blew into them to remove any dust, and the dust flew up into my eye!!!  So much for Health and Safety.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Stairs Part 2

Encouraged by the short length of stairs to the landing, I've now started on the main stairs from the ground floor to the entrance to the salon.
Now that I've got a better idea of what I'm doing, (and after a lot of thinking and measuring) I was pleased at how well the first of the sides have fitted between the step in the hall and the beam of the 'bridge'.
However, as you can see, there were some prayers offered as well!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Hey Presto

I had planned to take pictures of John replacing the new "bridge" but I was too late. He had finished by coffee time. Admittedly he had done most of the preparation yesterday. We are pleased with our "industrial" look although we know that when the other flights are in it will change the whole aspect of the hall completely.

Meanwhile I plod along clearing the "serpentine" bed. Fortunately I like weeding and I am so pleased that I am able to do it, even if it is only in hourly bursts.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Going Up in the World

I've been pressing on with making the stairs as, once the short length from the salon to the 'upstairs' landing is done, Sue will be able to make her own way there without my assistance.  The sides of the stairs had to be stained, and, of course, this needed a little work and mixing to achieve a satisfactory colour, but then it was time to assemble it. 
So, the moment of truth had arrived.  The old 'temporary' stairs (which have only been in position for about 3 years) were removed and the new ones fitted ... and they did!
So now I'm going to fit the new 'bridge' landing before I continue on with the other two flights of full stairs.
Sue was delighted to see proper stairs at last ... and stairs which she likes!

Comment from Sue

I had gone to bed when this was published so didn't cast my editors eye.......  Of course it will look better when the  guard rails are up - we've had them for years as well. However I am told that I will have to wait a lot longer for those as it is not possible to erect the other flights with those in the way. Hey ho we move on.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Specialist's Verdict

 I was going to call this post "Eureka" but we haven't quite hit the eureka moment yet. However the Specialist was very pleased. I did not have to have chemo today  but I have to have a scan next week to check that the cancer hasn't spread to any other part of my body and to monitor the minor secondary cancer in my lungs. He will discuss the results with the rest of the oncology team but he expects that initially I will have a rest from chemo for three months but with monthly blood tests to monitor the situation. We are naturally very pleased. John wants to crash open the champagne but I am concerned that I will not be able to drink my half!!

Another cause for celebration, John started to make the stairs yesterday and so far I am delighted. This is only the short flight to the bedrooms which is under construction, I am certainly more anxious about the longer, very heavy other flights.

Work on the " nearly finished bedroom" is temporarily halted because the waste/plug hole which was supplied was the wrong one, hence leak and "plumber" not happy.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Good Results

Following on from our last posting, we went shopping and I found the plumbing parts I needed to try to finish fitting the hand basin in the guest bedroom.  What I hadn't bargained for were the carpet tiles which we bought at the same time!  Just a little more pressure on me to get the room finished.  However, plumbing isn't my favourite pastime and, as expected, it became a question of curing that persistent little leak which became a dribble, which became a slight weep.  After more plumbing fittings I seem to be there! A result at last.

The weather is very warm and dry at the moment and , as well as the plumbing, I've helped the gardener as she's trying to get out there as much as she feels able.

Suse's working on recovering the beds which haven't really been touched for one to two years, so there's lots of clearing out and cutting back.  It's nice for her to be doing something.
We also had another 'result' this week when we went back to the Bridge club at Gourdon on Wednesday for the first time in over a year.  Sue had been worried about sitting and concentrating for 4 hours solid but we did it, although three and a half hours would have been enough!  And we were pleased that we didn't disgrace ourselves.

The final 'result' was Sue's latest blood test which she had on Thursday.  The marker for the cancer has now dropped from 39 to 28 when the target is less than 31 (it had been 400 in the early days).  Needless to say we are very, very pleased.  Sue has to go to see her specialist on Monday to discuss the results with him and find out how things will proceed but it would be nice to think that she can have some respite from the chemo!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Plodding On

Although it's (only) a couple of weeks since we posted some news, we're getting complaints from some readers, even some here in France, that we'tre not keeping you all up to date.  So, fear not; if there's no news it's because we've only done mundane things.  We're sure you don't want to know how many times we've been to the shops.

However, last week was taken up with the electrician who returned to finish off our electrics.  This involved, on my part, being around and pushing or pulling wires through tubes as necessary. (Don't ask what tubes, it's far too complicated to explain the French wiring system which is completely different to that used in England).  We're very pleased that all of the electrics for the house are finished.  However that means 'over to John' to get cracking!
I'm now finally(!) trying to connect up the water to the handbasin in the 'guest' bedroom (it has to be ready for Christmas!).  This has met a snag (there always is with plumbing) and I've found that the leak, a statutary requirement for 'home' plumbing, was caused by a small hole in my plastic water piping,  This then means a trip back to the shops ... inevitable!!!!

The main problem is the additional shopping that occurrs when one shops, especially when one's better half is there!