Friday, January 05, 2018

On the twelfth day of Christmas...

Blimey! Didn't that go quickly? So all of those beautiful decorations have to come down tomorrow. And only two of the four sets of lights stopped working this year! LEDs are definitely the type to have.

We went out for a stroll on Boxing Day. The weather looked promising. It was in fact promising to rain, but we went anyway. Jess and Eddie were both at work, so four of us drove out to nearby Verulamium Park. It was lovely, even under a gloomy sky, and loads of people were out enjoying it with us.

Expecting rain as we were (which started as promised just as we were heading back towards the car), I didn't take a camera, so these photos were taken on the same day back in 2014, when we'd had rather better weather.







And, since games were in the Christmas atmosphere, there were more of those later in the day, and more Christmas dinner and tea left-overs enjoyed, washed down with bottom-of-bottle wines and forgotten-and-left-in-a-corner ales.

Michelle went home on Wednesday, and we tried to settle into a life that wasn't quite so indolent. We did have a very long to-do list, after all. To do, or not to do? That was the question.

One job did keep surfacing in our thoughts, though. Our box-room (originally a bedroom and dubbed "The Snug") had for some years housed Eddie's vinyl record collection. But this collection had grown, and so also had the number of other things that had started to accumulate amongst them. Eddie could no longer access all of them. Something had to be done.

Fortuitously, there was another problem involving rooms which we were able to merge in with the box-room issue. I think I've mentioned Steve's portable recording studio (home-built sound-damping panels that link together to form a booth, and his home-built mega-computer for recording and mixing - plus numerous microphones, cables and attendant paraphernalia) which has been difficult to store. Plus, Jess has a large collection of musical instruments, many of which had ended up with Eddie's vinyls. The solution...

...a music room!

Our front room has been the least-used room ever since we moved out of the house and onto Kantara. When we're back, it's only used by us to watch TV. And even then we have to clear the sofas of ukuleles, whistles, a tiple and a flute, left there after a Said the Maiden rehearsal. The obvious thing to do, then, was to move all of Jess' instruments into this room (plus two guitars of mine, Steve's bass guitar, and the electric piano that was already there). We brought down a lovely old leather-topped writing desk from Grace's office/study/studio, where it was surplus to requirement, and Steve set up his recording kit on that. He arranged the sound-absorbing panels around the wall, Nome and Ed took one of the pair of sofas to replace their dead one, shelves were cleared to house the smallest instruments and job done! Said the Maiden and their engineer/producer can now rehearse and record comfortably, without having to move things around. One sofa, the TV and the hi-fi remain for Grace and me. It was a very pleasing outcome for everyone concerned.


Only one related job remained...

The box-room has in it two, 2-drawer filing cabinets for Grace and me to use. They were very full, and the fullness was largely attributable to many years of out-dated paperwork. You know the kind of thing. Bank statements, pay slips, insurance documents, mortgage stuff, and all of them dating back beyond ten years. It had to go. It didn't take long to sort it out, but shredding it required us to buy a new shredder - we'd killed one several years ago - and several hours of my feeding the papers into the shredder (though, in fairness, some of that time was periodical breaks of 30 minutes for shredder rest after it had cut out from overheating!) I took four large bin-bags of shreddies shreddings to the recycling centre this morning.

What next? Oh, yes, the decorations! Tomorrow! 😒




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