Well, it’s been a weird month

So, part of the long silence is that I went over to the UK with my Transport Evolved hat on, to attend Fully Charged Live. Which was very cool; and I got to see lots of fun things, which were made somewhat less fun by having a manky cold. Which reached it’s zenith right in the middle of FCL.

I can’t say I was the greatest presenter on earth (possibly I was the most terrible), but I did meet lots of lovely Transport Evolved fans, some of whom reminded me of why what Nikki does with TE (and what I get to do sometimes with TE) is important. I also did a lot of holding the boom pole / mic, which is a useful thing to do.

But, during that month we’ve been waiting for plasterers to quote for plastering. Which we waited for…and finally got yesterday. And fuck.

So, we had two plasterers come around and visit. And while their labour quotes are within a few hundred miles of each other, so that bit is fine. It’s the materials. The materials costs differ by around $8000. Now, given our lack of success with going with the cheapest quote (and the fact that the cheaper of the quotes did not fill us with confidence as to the level of experience with lime-on-drywall); we’re a little bit concerned. Because there’s no way in hell we can afford OVER $30k for some f’kin plastering.

So we’re now waiting until Wednesday when we get to talk to someone with somewhat less skin in the game, and more general knowledge (he trained both the folks we have plastering quotes from), and try and work out what the hell is going on and why we have this vast difference. And also what to do about it.

In the meantime today we attacked our meadow garden (not that the grass had got out of hand), and made it more gardeny again. We also arranged for the groundworks person to come and lay the concrete foundation for our garage. That can’t happen until the plans arrive; and so we’ve booked him in for when we think the plans will arrive (giving ourselves a few days leeway).

Then we spent the remainder of the afternoon tackling the window surrounds. Given that we had to do shopping today there wasn’t a lot of time left for working on the house…. but we’re starting to put trim up around the windows which, it turns out, does make the house look more finished. So that’s nice. It is, however, a non-zero quantity of complexity, given that we’ve gone with picture-framing the windows.

Despite the imperfect corners, with a bit of filler they’re okay. And they look nice once they’re up. It does, however, add to the “oh yes, we need to put another coat of paint on the entire house” thing. Feh.

It’s really tough at the moment. It felt like we were getting closer. Like we might even be in by the end of summer. And now – well – the cost of the plastering is insane (and we have no idea how we’ll afford it), and it feels like that end-of-summer possibility has vaporized. It wasn’t like we thought it’d be finished. But livable. And each month we’re not in is another couple of grand disappearing.

We both are fully aware that we brought this on ourselves, and some of this is just us being willful (much of this). But trying to drag this project to the finish line is proving to be incredibly difficult.

As a special bonus, the garage that have had my car for 2 years rather abruptly turned around and said I’ll need to remove it. They haven’t said when. It is not driveable. And I’m pissed off because they faffed around without making a decision for ages, then when I finally said “I’ll take the bit and get it fixed” they said it’s taken too long and they can’t keep it there anymore. Augh. So I need to work out where she’s going to go :(