26 August 2010

Status report, and a moan

I did what I did every morning. I got up at about 6:45, put the kettle on to make a pot of tea, turned on the TV to see the 7:00 news and weather, and then turned on my two computers, a desktop and a laptop.

The laptop didn't respond. The screen stayed dark, and the machine kept turning itself off and trying to restart. I can't tell if the screen is dead, or the hard disk. No luck starting it from a CD, so far.

The end of the road — the gravel road thru the vineyard, that is

Sigh. I don't have time to deal with it. This Compaq laptop really is a piece of junk. Anyway, I have to paint. Pinceau - rouleau - dodo, you know. Yesterday I worked for about three hours, looking up and applying several coats of paint using a roller on a long pole. The pole allows me to reach up to the peak of the cathedral ceiling, 11 feet up there. I painted three big sections of the room.

August weather, not hot but cool and partly cloudy

Problem is, I don't want to end up with a cervical disk injury the way Walt did, so I have to go slow and limit my work to just a few hours. After that, my neck, back, and arms have a chance to rest. At this rate, it's going to take a while to finish the job. I just keep telling myself that it would surely cost thousands of dollars (or euros) to have somebody come in and do the painting for us.

It looks like this vine has given up the ghost, but
not before producing many bunches of white grapes.

Walt goes back to the doctor this morning, to see what the prognosis is. He's been painting the baseboards, the lower walls, and now the closet doors — work that doesn't require holding his head back to look straight up at the roller on the long pole.

I said I wouldn't post any more pictures, but
here's one anyway. We are getting there.

What a summer! It's been six months since we started moving furniture around and having construction work done. We still have several weeks, if not months, of work to do. I hope this will be the last major construction/decorating job we ever have to do in this house.


  1. Haven't commented in some time. If Walt would like to consult a good chiropractor, get in touch with me via e-mail. The other day, you said he was very tired after taking his medicine and that's normal. I bet it's an anti-inflammatory and has a caution against driving because it causes drowsiness. That plus the extra attention needed when there's company or just a lot of people around can knock you out.
    This is probably your last big home improvement job. Next time you can either hire professionals or supervise a high-school kid you pay by the hour. You said the other day that you were feeling a bit overwhelmed by the veggie garden, the house and all. Well, you can do less. You don't have to move. If you moved, you wouldn't have the veggie garden, so you can decide to have less of one or not do it at all if it's too much. I'm sure that once the attic room is done and Walt's neck returns to normal, you'll be back to your cheerful self.

  2. Ken, it shouldn't cost that much.... we want to get into the Laiterie this year and decided to use our local painter.... rather than attempt to do it ourselves... we were well pleased with the quote for the whole interior... including preparation of surfaces, of what is a large house.
    If you do want to get some help then look for your local Entraide... ours is Entraide Touraine du Sud and is based in Petit Pressigny. They supply labour... you supply materials and something towards the wage.

  3. It is looking good. The older I get the longer painting takes, it took me three months of weekends to paint my 1100 sq. ft condo. But it looks so much better. No one will labor over the details the way you will.


  4. It's looking good up there!

  5. The new space looks terrific...and spacious. The white ceiling makes the woodwork stand out. House Beautiful should do a story.

    Frequent breaks when you can change position and relax will help you avoid Walt's problem. I find that I need a timer; otherwise I get too absorbed in what I'm doing to stop.

    This is not how you wanted to spend your summer, but next winter you'll be so happy with the results.

  6. Good for you for doing the painting yourself. The new room is looking great. I wouldn't dare try it in my house.

  7. "Live and learn", right? This too shall pass...

    I have discovered that clicking twice makes your photos VERY large, so I have traveled to your vineyards and into your loft while sipping my morning coffee.

    Sorry to hear about your laptop going. I hope it is fixable.

    Amy put this link on her blog today — it is long but good stuff.

  8. Evelyn, I posted JK Rowling's Harvard's speech on my facebook wall. It is long but so inspiring.

  9. Nadege, I actually got it from Amy's Facebook post, not her blog.

    I think I read the speech before, but seeing Rowling deliver it is wonderful. I can't imagine working for Amnesty International in my twenties.

  10. Ahh, the joys of getting older. You have to learn to take things a bit more slowly. Take it from an old fart.


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