West Coast USA – Ground Zero

It’s 02:12am (UK time) on Tuesday, and I’m writing again! Didn’t expect to be doing this, but my body and head are totally out of sync and can’t agree on what time it is, and I realised how much I enjoyed reminding myself of what I’d done/not done that day, how I felt, whilst writing my little blog/diary of the day.

I’ve felt like I should be getting up now after a big sleep. Except, I ended up having to bail from work a couple of hours early because I was that knackered. I’d a monstrous headache, overslept my alarm, which for “regular readers” is inconsistent with my sleep pattern, and was feeling sick-tired.

After getting home, I dozed for a while, and felt way better afterwards. Likely going to pay for that, though.

Although I managed to get in to work for (just) before 9am despite sleeping through my 7am alarm, it was heavy going, tbh. I think I may need to dock my wages today – can’t say it was my most productive of days, but I did wade through the 600+ emails, if nothing else! Truth is, I know I’ll make that time and contribution up before Friday.

After the power-nap, turned out it was a good time to do a bit of tidying. Jane had been doing the post-hols washing, but even though Andy Hazeldine (our builder) has very kindly given us a couple of days off to recuperate (and also treat his lovely other half on her 50th – Happy Big Birthday, Mrs H), we decided to do a bit of shifting of “stuff”.

Being honest, we’ve a house full of “stuff”. And nowhere to put most of it. I reckon if we threw 60-70% of it away, we’d never notice, and have a less cluttered house. Its definitely not a “show home”, but it is a wonderful home! And apart from a 12 year break, has been my home since I was 4. It was much more a show-home when it was Mum & Dads house!

However, that cluttery vibe is why when I turned up at the kitchen planning showroom with a full 3d model of my ideas, I explained I wanted as few horizontal surfaces as possible:

“Anything you can put crap on, avoid. Because well put crap on it, basically”. Comprehensive design brief given!

Can’t express how chuffed I am at how the building work is going! It’s really exciting, and after spending 25-odd years restoring my old Beetle, I appreciated that the very best moment is when things look their worst. Counter-intuitive, I know, but from that point on, you’re just going to see the vision realised and everything just gets better.

I’ve masked off the living room and we’ll do what we can to keep that the place to be, whilst the dining- and kitchen room are “remodelled”!

Other packing and tidying has meant that Charlie now has his dream bedroom! A big telly, plumbed in to his XBox One, a decent Cambridge Audio amp, Mordaunt Short speakers, and a Denon Dolby DTX Audio Visual Amp/Distributor! We’ll never see him again!

The bugger has all my hard-worked-for, and some inherited-from-Grandad A/V “boys toys” for now, but they’re not staying! That’s for the new layout downstairs!

One thing that I did realise, is that whilst away, the lads made such good progress on the building work, they ended up doing some of the inside work, which mean shifting and dust-sheeting the Dining room.

On our return, and having found Arthur, my Father-In-Law, tucked under the dust sheet, propped up by Janes piano, I realised we probably should have moved his ashes before we went away!

Which then led me to look for Scooter, our first dog, who resides in a little urn, garlanded by two of her dog collars (we’re not morbid, honest). Not found! I must confess to thinking that the “vase with lid” may have been accidentally discarded.

Panicking, I searched the room, under dust sheets, and other potential homes, but couldn’t see her. (Jane had nipped out, so was unavailable for comment).

Shit! What a conversation this was going to be with Andy: “Hi Pal, thanks for all the work, but did a vase get broken, and spill out a load of “dust”? If so, where’d it get put?”

Thankfully, on Janes return, she reminded me she moved that upstairs, when we sold all the dining room furniture!

After tea, I rigged my laptop up to the downstairs telly, and started reviewing my raw GoPro video from the hols.

Wow! Firstly, there’s loads of it! Turns out I took over 1,700 photos and 300 video clips! Glad I don’t have to send them off to SupaSnaps for printing! Can you imagine the bill!

Secondly, the video does actually give a better sense of the scale of some of what we saw. Helps that the GoPro has such a wide angle lens, I guess.

Thirdly, it’s probably best to avoid me for a while, especially at our house, otherwise you’re in for a marathon bore-fest of holiday footage!

It was quite a shock to see just how much we’d done, and how many things we’ve seen. We are so lucky to have been on that holiday, and despite Charlie not fully appreciating it at the mo’ (understandably), I’m sure he will in time. A big “thank you” to Lindsay Hinchliffe, for her help in arranging, booking and getting us great prices on the flights and car-hire!

It’s now well after 2am, and I’m starting to feel marginally sleepy. So, I’ll call it a night, set the alarm for 4 1/2 hours from now, and bid you a good evening!

One thought on “West Coast USA – Ground Zero”

  1. I won’t tell Daniel that Charlie has the Xbox in his bedroom. Daniel already thinks his life is very unfair because Charlie gets everything he wants and Daniel gets nothing. Charlie even gets to go to America again and we only went to Spain ☹️. Anyway Alan is still looking at flights to Florida but we haven’t seen any for the right price. Alan thinks we might’ve get something around Xmas time. The boys and I are desperate to go but it all comes down to money with sensible Alan. The way I feel at together moment is live life to the full while you can. Your kitchen is going to be amazing – we can’t wait to see it. Sounds like the builders are doing a fabulous job. See you all soon. 😎😎😎

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