I haven’t said anything detailed about the new house, because it’s not something that you want or need to know details about, and because I haven’t really had time to share anything, because I’ve been so busy sorting out those very details.
But stuff worth celebrating has occurred today: the study is no longer peach.
This is a project that took far longer than it should, simply because I had to re-prioritise for reasons. Once the priorities were taken care of, I finally managed to finish off the study today and it’s now a really pleasant place to be (if you can ignore the smell of fresh paint).
But it’s no longer peach. And that’s great.
Elsewhere (upstairs, basically), I took a quick and dirty shot from our bedroom window out to the SouthEast:
That’s looking across Grassy Park and Lavender Hill out across False Bay to Rooi Els, some 48km away.
Hello Rooi Els.
I suspect that I will be taking many more (and many better) images of this view. But right now, I need to be somewhere that doesn’t smell of grey paint.
But yes, Chesterfield does have a church with a crooked spire.
It’s quite a thing.
You drive right past it on the A61 when you’re heading to Sheffield because you’ve taken junction 29 off the M1 North in an effort to avoid the Catcliffe Link and the city centre traffic (and that’s really the only reason that you’d be in Chesterfield).
The spire was added in the 14th-century tower in about 1362, and is 228 feet (69 m) high from the ground. It is both twisted and leaning, twisting 45 degrees and leaning 9 ft 6 in (2.9 m) from its true centre. The leaning characteristic was initially suspected to be the result of the absence of skilled craftsmen (the Black Death had been gone only twelve years before the spire’s completion), insufficient cross bracing, and the use of unseasoned timber.
It is now believed that the twisting of the spire was caused by the lead that covers the spire. The lead causes this twisting phenomenon, because when the sun shines during the day the south side of the tower heats up, causing the lead there to expand at a greater rate than that of the north side of the tower, resulting in unequal expansion and contraction. This was compounded by the weight of the lead (approximately 33 tonnes) which the spire’s bracing was not originally designed to bear.
There are around a hundred twisted spires on churches across Europe, but this is the only one that you’d be likely to be passing if you were on your way to Sheffield
If you choose to believe some people, we are currently living in 1984 – not the year (some of us have been through that already) – the George Orwell novel in which the population is controlled by Big Brother and the totalitarian state.
Get a grip. It’s just a bit of cloth on your face.
But what really happened in 1984 – not the George Orwell novel in which the population is controlled by Big Brother and the totalitarian state – the year?
Well, talking of totalitarian states (eh?) there was a by-election in Chesterfield and there were 17 candidates. By law, if you mention one of them (and clearly, Moira Stewart had done so), you also have to mention all of the others so as not to show any sort of bias.
So Moira: take us through the other names, if you would, please?
Of course, none of these individuals came close to challenging the big three, and Labour’s Anthony Neil Wedgwood… er… “Tony” Benn romped home with 24,633 votes, much to the chagrin of John Connell of the Peace Party who came in 17th, just 24,626 behind.
And on the seventh day, God rested. God clearly didn’t have DIY to do.
The cottage in the back garden was the initial focus of the family’s efforts this morning. There really is no excuse for the amount of Antique Cream on the walls and woodwork of this house. We began to annihilate it with pure white. Clean, crisp, not beige.
And then, while the kids went and did Scouts stuff, the grown-ups tackled the peach study. We’re going for a grey in there. After all:
Grey is often perceived as a classic, sleek and refined neutral colour. Grey is highly adaptable and used by designers to let other colours shine, as it is subtle and can be either warm or cool. Best used as a restful backdrop to complement the mood you’re trying to create. It can also be combined with more playful colours.
Yeah. That’s me: classic, sleek, and refined. Highly adaptable. And I’m all about creating a restful mood.
And there’s such variety. I counted more than 49 different varieties in the special shop I was at earlier. Amazing.
There is one slight hitch. The peach doesn’t want to give up. It’s fighting back through two coats of Boulders Plume*. I’m reminded of Adrian Mole using a felt tip pen to colour in the bells on Noddy’s hat after thirteen coats of black paint in his bedroom.
Has there ever been a more sublimely comic vignette of teenage angst than the sorry tale of Adrian Mole and his Noddy wallpaper? In a series of diary entries over a torrid week one May, Mole, aged 13¾, decides that he can no longer sleep in a room papered with Enid Blyton characters (“positively indecent”) and paints his walls a vinyl, silk-finish black.
It does not work out well for him.
“Wednesday May 27th. Third coat. Slight improvement, only Noddy’s hat showing through now.”
“Friday May 29th. Went over hat bells with black felt-tip pen, did sixty-nine tonight, only a hundred and twenty-four to go.”
We’re not quite at that stage yet, but we’re certainly not grey yet either.