Well, as the title hopefully, if rather lamely, suggests, I have no good excuse for not having posted on here since 11 May.... nearly a month ago!
The first thing I do when I decide to update this blog is to go through all the photos that Danny and I have taken since the last update. Then as I go through them, it reminds me of what's been happening since then and I pick the photos that seem to reflect that. The photos, while serving as a reminder for me, provide a framework for the update. Why am I telling you this? Because, until I sat down this evening to write this, it felt that very little had actually happened since I last posted. (Maybe, subconsciously, that's why I haven't felt the need to do an update). And yet, as you will see, things have really moved on since early May.
So, how has the pool installation progressed, I hear you ask! To remind you, when I last wrote we had had all of the pipework and pumps fitted and were waiting for the pool liner to be fitted. The air temperature had to be at least 18°C and finally, that happened on 16 May! Tim, the man who sold us the pool kit and who has travelled backwards and forwards from his home nearly two hours' drive away to do the plumbing and electricity aspects, returned with his daughter, to fit the liner. It was a fascinating operation! It started with a thin carpet-like layer then, when the liner was warm and (I suppose) more pliable, it was fitted. I can do no better than demonstrate this with the following series of photos....
It was about this point in the proceedings when someone (I forget who!) noticed there was a pebble in the bottom, underneath the liner! Poor Tim had to slither inside and retrieve it!
One of the most fascinating bits of the liner installation was, for me, the way the liner was cut away from the front of the steps. I'm not sure if these pictures capture it but I hope they give you an idea of the operation..
So, now the liner was in and there was an aspirator fitted to each of the two long sides of the pool to suck out any remaining air between the liner and the side panels.
It was time to start filling the pool with water! Danny had the honour of doing this...
Once the pool was half filled with water, our digger man, Phil was back to start back filling the area behind the panels with gravel. At this point, we had very bad, wet weather again and the digger churned up the earth - again!
At this stage of the proceedings, it was good to welcome back John who, you may remember, installed the panels. He is now back with us to complete the terracing around the pool and 'finish it off'. His first job was to put down hard-core, followed by a reinforcing mesh before he could concrete.
John has now started concreting and once that is done, he'll be able to start fixing the slabs on top.
Last weekend, Danny and I had our first go of cleaning the pool, after which we put on the 'summer cover'. This lies on top of the water and at the moment is there to protect the pool from bits of dirt and cement! This is me, in pool-cleaning mode!
Well, while all this has been going on outdoors, quite a lot has been going on indoors as well! Danny has finished painting not just the utility room, but also the remaining wall in the kitchen, where the new door was fitted. These rooms have lots of niggly bits to do still before they are completely finished but nonetheless, we are making progress..
And while Danny paints, I have been busy looking after the potager. And my fruit cage..
And I am thrilled to introduce you to my first radish...and my first new potatoes...
The animals, especially the dogs, love all the activity and all the workmen. We currently have a pile of sand on the drive and Finn has made it 'his' place...poor John has to simply shovel around him! And Charlie watches the proceedings from a perch on a concrete block! I don't think I'll ever figure out what goes on in their little heads!
But I am going to leave you with a final photo of the pool. Danny took this on the evening that Tim connected up the light in the pool. I think it looks magical and I only have to look at this picture to remind myself, yet again, that we are so lucky to be in this position and that truthfully, our dream of having our own swimming pool is not too far off now.
So, bye for now...and I promise not to leave it so long before my next update!