Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Pre-Flight Bumper Edition

Okay, this is a bit of bumper edition as I haven't posted much lately and I don't know when I'll be able to post again. I'm taking this show on the road from tomorrow evening when I leave San Rafael for Buenos Aires, to then fly out on Friday morning for London. I'm hoping to retire this laptop -- faithful soldier that it's been these last 5 years -- for a slinkier model, so it might take me a while to get back up and running. But, I've been accumulating things in my head and it's getting crowded up there, so I'd better make some space. First off, pictures, and it's been a busy month.

We went from this:

To this:

And though it still ain't perfect, it's a whole heck of a lot better, with the best being not having the view from the kitchen window insulted by this eyesore every morning before I even had a chance to get coffee.

So now the view from here is:

Isn't that better?

Then, as we now boast gas hot water and heating, we could actually invite people for dinner -- not my specialty as I still find cooking here foreign territory and I was more than happy to be able to say, oh, too bad, only have two chairs -- but I caved in and went scouring round town for chairs. Now the way that this is done here, typically, is that you go to the local furniture store as no one wants "old" any more. But I like old, the older the better, sometimes. So in one of the few second hand shops there were four excellent chairs to be found, but the bonus was this lovely little ladybug who had winkled her way unnoticed into a corner for a ride home:

I popped her onto one of my latest plant rescues and they seemed to be getting along just fine. It's midwinter here, so it seemed a nice little nod towards good times to be had round the kitchen table.

But that's still minor news compared to the bookshelves! I am now in the very strange position of having shelves and no books, rather than the more usual, books and no shelves. Among other locations, the hefty load of my books have been slumbering in a Florida basement for over a year now -- many, I haven't had to hand for almost four! But, they will come one day, and there will be shelves to receive those patient, world-weary travellers.

Years ago, Andres saved a set of shelves that were being ousted for more modern press-board versions from a five-and-dime that was "upgrading". A dozen drawers had also managed to escape that fire and the shelves were shelved for a while. We dragged it out, looked at it and turned it round in our heads a couple of time -- yup, we can -- and finally came up with a solution for the depth of the shelves: make it accessible from both sides. We built a facade for what had been the back to match the front, sanded it all down It's now awaiting the correct varnish -- more stirring of colours in our heads -- and since Saturday we have "His and Hers", back-to-back bookshelves down the centre of our very accommodating living room. We've got a 10-year goal to have the best library in San Rafael, but given the abysmal state of the municipal book-borrower, which has been the booty of every low-browed bureacrat looking for a desk-job, that's not saying too much. But on Sunday morning, the light streamed into the living room windows, setting the middle two shelves aglow and though the ladybug has since buggered off and my side of things is still empty, it seemed another good sign.

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