I felt a bit blue yesterday, but at last there seems to be a bit of progress. I know its only little things but it does make a difference. The passenger seat is finally out and they have made a cover for the stair well so Phoebe doesn't fall down the steps if she jumps out of bed in the night to do her guarding thing. This means the floor is now level throughout when the hatch is down so if I open the door when someone is knocking Phoebe's eyes and teeth are over 7ft from the ground - I think she really will be an excellent deterrent for any would be sneak thieves.
The bottom two slippery metal steps are now completely covered with a sort of self adhesive emery paper type non-slip material for Phoebe to give her confidence as she goes up the steps and stop her Scooby-doo impressions. Also I have been trying out a spring release type lead for her as lots of camping places only allow dogs if they are on a lead. This is all pretty novel to her as she has only ever had a lead on if she went to the vets which was a very few times, but she has taken to it well. I am very impressed with how fast this old dog is learning new tricks, perhaps like dog, like owner!!!
Now she is used to the lead I have found if I set it on lock she can walk round with the container part suspended on her chest like a St Bernard with its barrel, do you think that counts as being on a lead, probably not. But she does come straight back to me when she is called then I can just grab the handle. Also she is very obliging and lowers her head and puts it though the little loop thing that comes on the end of it. All in all a great success.
They have put in a hands free thing for the phone in Thebus and someone has tuned the TV and radio for me. They were all on obscure Welsh stations concentrating on rugby and the weather – it think it must have been a man who owned Thebus last – we might see about adding some more feminine touches before long, but a bit at a time I think
I can't get to grips with the American cooker. I never did like cooking with gas anyway, having been brought up with an Aga plus an electric cooker for those very occasional really hot summers when you needed to turn the Aga off. I always feel unsafe around gas – I think it dates back to when my Grandmother's gas cooker always lit with a mini explosion. In this thing the flames are two thirds of the way down the oven and run back to front in the middle! And there is no grill. Does one use the oven floor for grilling? And can you make toast there? The microwave is also American and has settings for popcorn, pizza, and dinnerplate?
But I am getting into a little routine for my new life now, and have a shower at night while Thebus is warm and toasty then jump straight into bed. By about 4.50am the temperature has normally dropped to 55F and Phoebe comes to tell me its getting a bit chilly for her liking so I pop on the main furnace and the fan blower for a blast of heat and put on a whole kettle of water, which on the feeble little gas burner takes about ten minutes or more to boil even though the kettle is only small. When that is whistling I get up and then fill a large pump thermos type flask which gives me hot drinks all day long without needing to boil the kettle again. Then a little more water in the now warm kettle and there is enough for a pot of tea in a few minutes. Excellent. I should have taken up time and motion I can't stand wasting effort. One my Kitchen Cupboard sayings was “Life's too short to Pip a Grape”. Very relevant to me as one of the first cookery books I was given was Tante Marie – with a recipe for green grape jelly which from memory involved skinning the grapes then de-pipping them with a goose quill.
As I say lifes too short to pip a grape!
Office Staff hard at it....
Workshop staff hard at it.....