January SITREP – 2020

Not everything has gone according to plan this month but Helen and I keep slugging away and things are progressing at a steady pace, if not necessarily in the right order.

My priority has been to finish off the new kitchen in the Gite, this is where I’m at :


At first glance you will think that it has not progressed since last month but that is not the case, the painting is done, the plumbing is in, the new electrics are all in place, it is ready to go, the stumbling block is that I do not have a kitchen to fit !!

My shopping trip with Helen to choose a kitchen went surprisingly smoothly, we knew what we wanted and it was all ordered in less than one hour, but then we hit the snag.

The kitchen that we have chosen is Grey ( when I say we I obviously mean Helen) but Helen decided that she didn’t want white units with grey doors, she wanted grey units as well, and guess what ??  Yes, they are a special order !!

Good job she was with me really because I would have just took the white ones.

2-3 weeks the lady in the shop said, well, we are 2 and a half weeks in to the wait with no sign of our kitchen, yet !

Hopefully when I write the February SITREP I will have better news.

The weather has been atrocious, we have had rain, with heavy rain, and then some torrential rain, it has proven very difficult to get the water level down on the lake in order to complete the winter tidy-up, and some days I have had to force myself outside to get things done.  I HATE working in the rain !

Rain or no rain I felt the need to progress something and if that could not be the Gite kitchen then it had to be lake.  I finished the far-bank yesterday and I intend to make a start on the swims tomorrow.

As previously said I was going to take a greener approach to things this year and make better use of my chipper, thereby cutting out the need for big bonfires.  Here is my beast of a chipper at work :


It can cope with wood up to 150mm (6inches) in diameter.  We have cleared out hundreds of young saplings and dead-wood from along the far bank and in minutes it converts a pile of unwanted wood in to this:


The best bit about this process is that it generates a by-product that has a use; bedding for dogs and horses:


So impressed is Helen with the new horse bedding that she has decided to layer her riding school with it to make the going underfoot nicer for the horses.

That’s all well and good thinks I, but now I have another job-for-life, chipping.  You need to make a lot of chips to cover a riding school.

The horses love the stuff, since we put it down they will not come out of the shelter, primarily because some of it is edible, to horses that is.  A nice soft warm bed that you can eat, why ever move ??

One thing that I am really pleased with is my workshop, as at today it looks like this :


One last drive over the next few weeks and it will hopefully be in full use ready for the Spring.  It still needs to have the cladding finished, and the doors fitted,  and the electrics replaced, and the rest of the shelving to be fitted, and, and, and !!!!!

Nearly there.

Unexpected availability.  We have just had a cancellation for the 23rd of May so if anyone fancies a session during what is prime fishing time then give me a shout quick.  I will be putting this up on Facebook as a general advert shortly but if you have read this post all the way through then you deserve prior notice of this opportunity.

Keep your eyes peeled for next month’s Sitrep.

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