18th July: Going Topless

I was going to give you an update last night, but was a bit knackered. Not that I’ve been doing much, but the day started at half six. Helpfully, the little horse came in hopping lame the night before last  – they’re usually out 24 hours during the summer but he’s managed to impale his foot meaning abscess (yuck) and a few days in the stable. The vet came out about half eight that evening and I’d finally got to bed pretty late. Yesterday morning was spent procuring some very expensive hay (there’s going to be a crisis this winter) and fighting with the wee guy to put another poultice on his foot. He’ll live.

Asbestos coming off

Bigger news at the ‘Billy though. By the time I’d got back yesterday, just before lunch, the asbestos roof was largely on the ground. Poor little house, exposed to the elements. The boys (Stu and Paul) were joined by the ever so lovely Julian who is, by Stu’s reckoning, one of the best joiners you’ll ever come across. Ironically, although he doesn’t look nearly old enough, he used to work for my Granny when he was a kid. That fills me with great joy.

By the end of play yesterday, loads of the timbers had been cut out and were on the ground. Still, that’s nothing compared to what’s been going down today…

Proper toys!

Heavy machinery, that’s what. Forty tons and half a million quids’ worth of crane rocked up from down the road – they usually deal with road traffic accidents and recovery but Stu and I figured that as they were close, we might aswell ask. Ably driven by Justin and directed by Gary, the team cut and lifted all the larger timbers off the roof before finally lifting the pair of A-frames that could have been holding the house together – we wouldn’t find out til they started lifting!

Paul was the only one not sore after today’s work. Then again, he’s also the youngest. By quite a long way…

Before: Stu concentrating. And looking a little pale.

How do I attach this then?

Rich appeared (having missed all the roof drama up until now) and looked pretty bloody terrified. Can’t say I blamed him, I was a teensy bit scared that the whole lot would fall down when they finally lifted the A-frames off. Still, we should never have doubted Stu – it couldn’t have gone more smoothly.

Vince turned up from the tv production crew to film the crane work and stuff happening on the build – he did say just before he left. ‘That went really well for you today, which I’m pleased about, but secretly I’m a bit disappointed that wall didn’t fall down. It would have made for great telly…’

Vince, waiting for the crash…

It’s dawned on us that watching the building work is like watching a bit of car crash telly – compulsive viewing, but not when it’s your car! Best news of the day, is that the little house didn’t fall down. Did you hear that? It didn’t fall down. All the walls are still standing. For now, anyway 😉 This is probably going to sound very girly (and perhaps a teensy bit mad) but I feel quite emotional wandering around the house. The walls are still there, the stairs are still there, the first floor is still there and the roof is missing but bloody hell, it feels utterly like home. I can’t believe we’ve stepped off the edge and are actually doing it. Some people might think we’re bonkers but when I stand in the house, watching it come slowly back to life, I can’t help thinking this is probably the most sensible thing Richard and I have ever done. I may go and have a little cry.

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8 responses to “18th July: Going Topless

  1. Progress!

    I would have been cr*pping myself with all of that timber being removed – no wonder you got emotional. Glad to hear it’s all still standing. Now, how long before they start putting the new structural bits in so that it’s less prone to being blown down in a freak gale? 😉

  2. It was quite a moment, I can tell you. Notice how Rich and I are standing well back. Ha ha ha. Stu was cool as a cucumber throughout. Probably. He was certainly smiling afterwards anyway.
    Just have to pray for no freak winds….

  3. Awesome – highly amusing too. I felt exactly the same when I came home to chimney’s missing and holes in ceilings/floors when doing my house. Bizarrely I wasn’t bothered when the roof came off. I think I’d seen enough by then!

  4. Great to see things moving along so rapidly. Can’t wait to see the end result. Also, is our friend Ratcliff running a crane operation on the side?

  5. Updates please! By the way, I’ve been travelling with work a bit recently, so I’ve got loads of hotel toiletries to give Rich when I next see him! 😉 x

    • Oh good, we’re running out and all this sunshine has left the ‘van smelling a little ripe 😉 Still, that’s nothing on the Turdis. Baked poo anyone?
      If you could get us some more Imunage that’d be splendidxxx

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