This week I learnt something. Apparently it is not possible to mix concrete if the temperature has the audacity to fall below freezing!
The cynic in me immediately assumed that the builders were simply work shy fops, who had some objection to working all day in the midst of snow and temperatures that would see monkeys “sans globes”. I could have checked this out via google or some such device, but felt better wallowing in my bitter pit of cynicism to be honest.
As the next stage of our garage conversion is the laying of the floor, apparently this concrete lark was pretty fundamental to progress. Hence, we lost two days, and I can’t tell you how depressing it was to stare at the same desolate scene in the garage for all that time, especially after witnessing significant changes in week one.
On Thursday a builder returned, somewhat reluctantly, and progressed the project a little. His day was spent trying to break up frozen sand. Nice.
My infantile mind could not reconcile these practical problems encountered by the builders with my reality of dealing with these super low temperatures. I have been moaning all week about having to walk three feet to my car, defrost my bloody car door handles, and thinking this was a major inconvenience. I then proceeded to moan that the builders didn’t turn up for two days!! I am an arse at times. (Comments neither required or welcome).
With the house resembling one on Coronation Street at the moment, we had a debate about whether to postpone a long-planned visit this weekend from our friends Steve and Di. I work with Steve, and have done for over ten years. We worked together at my last place, and I persuaded him to make the move to the new job with me too. They have also been lovely enough to be the source of DVC points for some of our prior visits to Florida. In addition to that, they have even looked after my snotty cocker, which isn’t something anyone could do! They are officially documented as being the nicest couple on the planet.
In the end, we decided to go ahead, and they are aware they must take us as they find us. These weekends normally take the form of much eating, some drinking, a visit “out” somewhere if the weather and season permit, and then a Chinese takeaway of illegal proportions, and a chat about Disney, the Universe and everything in between.
We last visited them back in the early summer, and this was documented here in the Sindery and Snot blog.
The reason for the earlyish posting of this here blog is that I expect not have time this weekend to squeeze it in.
Our plan for this weekend is to stay nice and local, and just have a wander around the Last Drop Village, which is about five minutes from us. The other suggestion was a trip to the German markets in Manchester, but we’ll see. The coldness will be a major factor in our decision, and there you go, once again, my cynical ramblings about work shy builders is highlighted for the hypocritical nonsense that it is.
I have also promised Steve that I will show him Call of Duty Black Ops on the Xbox as he does not own it yet. I am duty bound to honour his request as he is a guest in our house! I’m sure there will be some hours spare whilst the ladies ready themselves for something at some point.
On Wednesday this week the girls were at yet another gig. The seem to spend as much time at the MEN arena as they do at school! This time the headline act was Bullet for My Valentine, supported by Bring Me The Horizon. Usually I can appreciate much of their musical choice, but these are both far too “screamo” for my tolerance. I can’t say I could name you a song from either, but I do know that when they girls put them on in the car, I really have to bite my tongue to avoid the classic Dadism of “who the hell are these jokers?”.
So the attendance of a gig, as usual, saw me in Manchester, at 10.30 on a school night, waiting in a sea of eyeliner and angst, to pick the girls and their friends up. One of these times, their friends parents will do the honours!! Sorry, did I say that out loud?
Rebecca had done herself some serious damage headbanging, and looked worse for wear all the way home. She was immediately despatched to bed with two paracetamol and a life lesson. Emily, ever the sensible one, had “mini moshed” as she put it, in between taking 666 (a number worthy of the hard rocking devil worshippers she was watching) photos, most of which look the same, but of course are crucially different to those in the know!
I got home around 11.30 after dropping off fringes all over Bolton.
Sunday sees them watching Youmeatsix at the same venue, and I can only hope some other parent will feel guilty enough to volunteer to taxi them around this time.
Emily’s mocks seem to be going OK. I ask every night how she has got on that day, and the standard answer is a shrug of the shoulders and “Meh”. Make of that what you will. She has had one mark back already for one of her Maths papers, and it was a good one, so I’m playing it cool and accepting “Meh” for now.
She’s also been filming her media studies project, and has roped in her friends to star in her production. It is inevitably a horror epic, and I look forward to seeing the full two-minute cinematic masterpiece shortly. Homework was never that much fun when I was at school. Dammit, I swore I’d never do “in my day”.
Rebecca has been working on a History project this week, and she needed to do a project on a soldier who served in World War One. Luckily for Rebecca my Dad has been researching our family tree since he retired, and was able to hand her the entire contents of her project on a plate. Well it was several sheets of A4 but you know what I mean!
He has done a cracking job though, all the way back to the 1600s, and he has photos and documents of many of the family. It is also amazing that only two generations ago, having seven or eight kids seemed to be the norm! I shudder to think.
For starters how would I get them all in the car after these gigs!!
Looking at the photo of George here, puts my moans about concrete, trips to the MEN, and well, everything else I whinge about in perspective. He died aged 22, at Ypres in April of 1918.
I can’t and don’t want to imagine what he went through and saw in the three years that he served in the war.
So on that cheery note, I shall post this entry, and leave you to your weekends.
I will see you back here next week, on the other side of some beer and possibly a Chinese takeaway so large it may endanger my health. Steve has an appetite to match mine, but he just manages to control it better….well control it some would be more accurate!!
Till the next time…..