Sunday, 30 March 2008

The lonliness of the long distance kitchen builder

I suppose that really I should have seen it coming.

I observed at the time that I really did have an easy escape over the purchase of four green goddess pumps. I should have got suspiscious when filling the house with spares and hoses did not produce some sort of rebelion but no on I sailed in blissfull ignorance.

Of couese it started a bit ago with putting the house on the market, terrible ammounts of tidying were undertaken at that time, vast quantities of stuff went down the skip despite this and serial viewings not a single person has come and put their cash on the table.

I should have got worried when I caught her downloading something off the internet, no not lewd photos of scantilly clad rugby players, something far worse, the IKEA kitchen planner.

Alarm bells should positavely have deafened when she commanded I get her a large tower of the sort you climb on to do work. The plan was to give the house a makeover to improove it salability.

Part one of the plan was not so bad. The tower was duly erected in our living room and vast quantities of paint applied to the walls. I say not so bad as management is notoriously reluctant to allow me to pick up a paint brush. This illusion of incompetance is not one to be given up lightly so I safely got out of that one.

Unfortunately she knows I can assemble flat packs and with the holidays looming upon us she announced we were having a day out in IKEA. This was her que to spend long hours at her laptop bashing away at something strange from her IKEA planner.

Came the day and I should have sensed doom. 4 trolleys of goods only just fitted into the IVECO. If loading and unloading that lot was not enough the obvious next move was to let construction commence. My living has been reduced to the status of building site with tools and boxes of screws all round the room, this would not be so bad if she didn't expect me to be the one using them.

This was compounded by the men at Comet who may well live electricals but they have limited concept of keeping to delivery dates. Now this could have had massive repercussions in the recrimination department excepting it had been her grand plan to save 400 pounds that resulted in our placing an order there.

Epic driving round managed to trace the necesary inbuilt fridge to allow construction to progress and today I sit here surrounded by mostly complete units confident in a few weeks basking in glory, or peace at least.

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Another month another entry....

Now when I come to write things up it usually means there has been some disaster or other on the recent horizon.

Now it came to pass that this weekend just past me and er had a weekend of relative off.

That meant that Perfecto the step son was draughted in to be the token adult and Brnwen my daughter told to keep a good eye on him in case he did something daft.

With various other children decanted to grans and mums we set off happily on route to Plymouth. Well, no it could not be that simple now could it. The Eisteddfod was on Friday and of course Gwion my youngest was competing so this being his first competition dad was draughted in as "duty son watcher" to go and applaud at the relevant bits.

This in turn meant we were 2 hours later than planned leaving here, ahh yes the weekend shaping up nicely. Or was it, the motorway was deserted and in true white van fashion in indecently little time we had dropped off and were back on the motorway on ferry terminal bent.

Our original plan had been to stop off just outside the ferry terminal and head into town to find food. Fortunately, we were running a bit tight for time and so decided to eat on the ship instead which meant I missed out on wandering round Milbay whihc it turns out was the roughest red light area of plymouth with a wallet full of readies to place at the disposal of anyone who was quick and enterprising enough to produce a knife....

Anyway, being overheight we got to wait till the very end and after about everyone we went on the ferry and up for food.

Now, the Pont L'Abbe is not quite in the first flush of youth, a feisty old boiler of a ship if ever I saw one. The restaurant has seen loads of better days too.

But down we sat and enjoyed a perfectly good meal with a very fresh Muscadet to start and a grand St Emilion to finish. All this and change out of 50 quid.

Of course, it turned out that we would probably have been safe enough in Milbay, I reckon all the crims, neer do wells not to mention out and out head bangers of plymouth were on that ferry.

Management loved it, she does not do ornithology, far more fun watching people. No point me trying to compete either, would have been like taking on the navies latest guided missile cruiser with HMS Victory.

She was having innocent fun. Why didn't I chose a better seat where I could see more.

But of course we were at sea and the sea in March can be a wee bit choppy which of course was the ships excuse to engage in some violent dancing and her excuse to turn green and head for bed.

Anyway, next morning bright and early off the ferry we trooped nearly the last as usual.

The trip to our house passed without incident, well except me getting lost whilst trying to find a new route to the house but never mind...

The house was inspected and we went for lunch.

Now, calling les trois marchands "lunch" does not really cut it, she has written more on her blog but this really was a meal to write blog entries about.

4 fantastic simple courses for under 11 euros vin compris. Obviously being the driver I had water and not being the driver she didn't.

I feel that, at this point the night before started to catch up with her as we were only some little way up the road to Morlaix and her conversation was replaced with loud snoring. At least I hope it was fatigue and not boredom.

We had already stocked up with coffee in the morning (intermarche) and the afternoon was given over to a flying visit to the Geant in morlaix where of course the coffee was even cheaper....

So, with even more coffee bought it was on to St Pol and Red Cash Wine (plug plug!)

We have tried most of the local wine stores and find Red cash to be about the best and certainly the friendliest of the bunch.

With the van thus loaded, management decided we could pop into LeClerc in St Pol for yet another supermarket dash. Yes the coffee was cheaper again and no I didn't get any more, a man has to know his freezers limitations....

Finally, it was park up in the ferry terminal and walk the short distance into town.

This was tinged with just a little piece of sadness. On the way into Roscoff, almost forgotten is a German Blockhouse right on the shore. Part of Hitlers atlantic wall it has obviously been a house at some stage as well as seen a few other uses, recently it has been empty and boarded up. Now I know the war is long gone but things like this serve as a reminder to us all of so many things. It was a huge old building and could surely be used for something usefull but no, it seems it is to be demolished to make way for who knows what. Another piece of history swept away.

But on we went into town with the wind promising an interesting trip home and the sea threatening to jump over the wall and join us....

Normally the town is busy, but this saturday night a few brave restauraunters chased the trade of the few brave souls who had ventured out to eat. Our usual creperie was closed and on we went to creperie de la poste where the crepes were the very thing to top up a stomach still bloated from the hugest of huge lunches.

Of course this was nothing to my beloved who only had eyes for..... the pair of ageing lotharios at the next table who were busy optimistically chatting up ladies they seemed to have found from somewhere. Bloody hell!

Why can't she take up ornithology.

All good things must come to an end and reluctantly we made our way back to the ferry. Some more reluctant than others, she had seen the sea and had no fancy to see her dinner again.....

Back to the terminal bar or whipsnade as it might be better called full of animals as it was....

It really had been a lovely weekend, one of only three we had to ourselves in the last three years. Nothing could spoil it, the roller coaster ride on the ferry home, last off the ferry, unspeakably rude immigration, none of it.

And today, we are really misty eyed today, it's her birthday, so I opened a really classy white and to make the day complete I bought her a bag of chips, and a sausage hell I even got her curry sauce.....