At the beginning of this week I was starting to feel a bit daunted. That list of little jobs that needed doing on the house was quite long. Nothing difficult but a lot of fiddly bits.
Martin from Deans Carpets had been to measure up for vinyl to replace the tatty carpet and pointed out that I really needed to put hardboard or thin plywood over the conservatory floor before the fitters come. There is an inspection chamber for the drains in there and although the cover is level with the concrete the ‘handles’ could cause the flooring to puncture if something heavy – a castor or heel – put pressure on the wrong spot. I probably have enough plywood in the workshop to do the job and if not can easily get some but it needs doing. And I found that there is a leak where 2 window panels join. Again I can probably fix it but it is another item on the list. And it is not helped by the water butt just outside overflowing so I should install an overflow on that to take excess water away.
Then someone recommended a builder who has just moved to the area and I asked him to come and look at some jobs which are too skilled for me or just need more hands or strength. He came and can start on upgrading the chalet in the garden next week! Lovely but space had to be cleared. More on that project in future posts.
Just as I was feeling sorry for myself and beset by my ‘to-do’ list I listened to a podcast of Crossing Continents’ from the BBC about refugees in Uganda. They had fled the fighting in South Sudan and Uganda, to its credit, has an ‘open door’ policy. Many were young women with small children whose menfolk had been killed. Vulnerable and traumatised, carrying a few meagre possessions, they found a humane reception with food and medical help provided. But it was also brisk and no-nonsense. Within days they were moved to resettlement centres, taken out into the bush and allocated plots of land. They were provided with basic tools, a tarpaulin and some poles for shelter, and could collect food rations each day for a while but other than that were expected to get on with it. To build a home, clear and plant their plot and make a new life.
I listened cwtched in, sitting on a comfy sofa, cat purring next to me, dogs sprawled in front of the fire, curtains drawn against the wind and rain and felt humbled.