As tall Dave warned us right at the start, there comes a point where everything slows right down just before the end and you're in limbo. They tore around the house today, finishing off; filling in little holes in the wall here, pointing the plasterer at big holes in the ceiling there, putting up architraves and skirting boards in nearly all the places we need them. There are one or two skirtings still to go in - a little one in the bathroom and quite a large one where the window and door to the roof terrace will go. The door people said 'two or three weeks' a week or two ago, so the Daves will come back when they're ready. They'll also come round with the building inspector to get everything signed off, which is when they'll fill in those last few little holes and gaps, and put up the bathroom mirrors for us, and fit those horrid door closers, and maybe some fire doors as well if we have to have them. That's when we can talk a little cash in hand to build the wardrobe and the shelves in the new study/old bedroom and the shelves in the new hall and the shelves in the airing cupboard ;-) There's still the roof terrace tiles to buy and be fitted. Of course, we never did get a measurement for the terrace though I could probably stick a tape measure out of the gap at the edge of the tarpaulin.
Can't remember if they boxed in the soil pipe today or yesterday; very neatly done, with a sweet little slit for the Cat 6 cables to dangle from ;-)
What else happened to day? Sticky things... the tiler phoned yesterday so say he could come today so as soon as we got back from picking up the bathroom light from John Lewis in Kingston we dashed out again to the Reject Tile Shop on Wandsworth Bridge Road because I'd had a Bright Idea. So instead of just plain white tiles in the shower area, we've got white tiles with a row of mixed blue mosaic tiles at about shoulder height, three tiles high. Which looks rather nice if I say so myself and I'll prod sbisson to upload more of the pictures to www.sandm.co.uk/~simon/Gallery/ soon.
The shower doors arrived last night and they can go up in a few days time once the adhesive and grout have dried out. "They're not dry! Don't have a shower! They only look dry!" said the tiler earnestly when I joked that we could wait to put the shower doors up because I wasn't in a hurry to have a shower. He also reminded me to get the plumber to run a line of silicon sealant between the base of the tiles and the shower tray, and to put some around the hose connection on the wall when he tightens that up (with some tape on the inside). He grudgingly allowed that Mark the plumber had done a nice job - "I've seen a lot of plumbers" he remarked darkly.
In other stickiness, they rendered the wall on the roof terrace because the brickwork really was atrocious, and not just where they'd taken out the sideways bricks that used to support the ceiling timer that runs along the back wall. It now looks smooth and ready to paint.
The tarpaulin is nailed in place where we don't have a door and window, against the rain, but there's enough of a gap at the side that I can sit against the wall and get a nice breeze. I want to be sitting out on the terrace but as that has no railing I shall be patient! No word from Aardvark on finishes, materials, samples or the rest, or indeed price or when they can do the work ;-)
They took the skip away today; we didn't think it was going quite that soon and after having said all week to small Dave that no, we didn’t have anything else we wanted to put in it, we found a handful or rubbish that would have fitted in nicely. In fact we were carrying it downstairs as we heard them haul the skip onto the lorry! Amusingly, last night a man came to the door and apologised because he'd asked his builder to dump some waste outside his house to take to the dump and the builder had put it in my skip, and he'd be taking it right out. An apology, forsooth! I told him as long as it wasn't falling out or catching fire, he was welcome to leave it there, as a reward for being so polite. Well, I didn't say the polite bit!
The scaffolding will be going soon too, which will please him downstairs. We plan to tell him that we don't want to pay anything towards decorating the hall at this point, which will please him less, but I honestly don’t feel we can afford it and I don’t frankly care about decorating it. I just don't want him taking off the architraves and putting in some nasty vile modern tat like his veneer-covered door (which always makes me think of Sylvanian Families plastic dolls houses). I hope the last of the quotes for doing the hall ceiling arrive soon so I can book someone in (I've got quotes for plaster plus mouldings and plaster plus decorating but not for all three). I think it's also time to paint the front room windows as they've never had a real coat of paint in five years. Plus we have a weeding to go to and if we had spare cash I'd sue it to stay on in Barcelona instead of coming back early and missing the last day of the conference (peeve! peeve!) rather than painting the hall. Am continuing to feel (probably pointlessly and foolishly) stressed about the hall. Don’t quite know why I care about the mouldings and architraves, but it seems I do. Wonder if they represent crusted English heritage or old-bufferish Edwardian Country House tendencies or just plain stubborn foolishness...