Maintenance and Art
With any old property there will always be maintenance. You have oly just finished the place and then you have to start maintaining the stuff you started with. The first floor we laid was the bathroom. In fact that is the first place we slept (because it was the only place with a flat, dry floor. A flat dry floor and a composting toilet. Sounds lovely; so romantic. Anyway, it desperately wanted freshening up, more that a wet mop would achieve. The generator was engaged and Breezy sanded the whole floor and applied two coats of varnish. The difference is amazing and makes the other floors about the barn look a little tired. Next up is the floor in the Naughty Corner.
Then there is the fettier (or roof ridge). The roof covering is old slate and the ridge is sheet zinc. This however is in 6 bits because at the time we were told you could not get a single length 12 m long. This may now be possible (but I doubt it). A consequence is that there are 5 joints where the sheets of zinc overlap. Add to that the 6 nail holes per sheet which secure it to the roof and you have quite a lot of potential for leaks. Over the years, when there is a leak in the roof, I get up there with some tools and a mastic gun and try my best to plug any possible leak spot. Now there is a product called “Zinc Fix”. It looks like mastic, comes in a mastic tube and is called “Zinc Fix” not mastic. It may be mastic, but renaming it adds some value in terms of Euros. To stand the best chance of the new stuff working I felt it would be good to clear away all the old mastic (probably 4 generations) so that I could apply it to zinc rather than old mastic. After all, they did’nt rename it “Old Mastic Fix”. This process, including applying the new stuff took half a day and gave me a blister on my index finger.
Neither of the above were photo worthy so ther are none.
What is photo worthy is the planter made from the old trunk of the pine tree we used to shower under and Doris the Deer. The planter is home to a couple of Dianthus grown from seed donated by my Mother. An Doris is made from bits of flotsam wood collected from the side of the river. It was named Doris so as not to cause offense to anyone we know (we don’t know anyone called Doris).