Friday, 21 February 2014

England: London

Leonard Cohen live, Greenwich O2
Sunday 8 September 2013: My tenants are moving out of my Wimbledon apartment so now I have a base in London, fantastic. I'll take this opportunity to refurbish the flat, visit friends and family, and take in some of the capital's culture. Two months should be enough - well that's what I think!
Wednesday 11: I meet my chum Andy and we survey the flat - looks like a bomb hit it.
Thursday 12: I take time off to see Geordie boy Alan Price, formerly of The Animals, at a local venue, The Half Moon in Putney, my first decent ale for a while, sorely missed.
Sunday 15: Leonard Cohen plays a great two-hour set at Greenwich O2, for a man of 79 he's fantastic.
Monday 16: Andy comes over and we start on the overgrown garden. At dusk it's fenced, laid to pea gravel and slabs. I'm knackered.
Wednesday 2 October: Two weeks of working sixteen-hour days and I've cleaned all internal surfaces with sugar soap, all holes and cracks have been filled, ceilings painted, light-fittings replaced, double-glazing and central heating have now been installed, I've chosen the colour schemes and bought the paint so now it's time to start in earnest.
Wednesday 16: Two more weeks painting, the new bathroom suite is delivered and installed. More bloody copper pipes to prime, undercoat and finish, aagh. Gas safety certificate is issued.
Friday 18: The new carpets arrive and all are laid in a day despite slightly tacky skirting boards.
Tuesday 22: Andy returns with ladders to paint the external fascias. By now I've planned and refitted the internal doors to fit the new carpets, redecorated all but the kitchen and bathroom - there's light at the end of the tunnel.
Friday 1 November: More sixteen-hour days and I've retiled the bathroom walls and the bathroom and kitchen floors. Ross Electrical arrive and issue safety certificate.
Tuesday 12: External painting complete: fascias, back stairs, balcony and front door. New bed, mattresses, bedding, cutlery, crockery and fire blanket in place. Now it's time to relax, visit friends, take in some culture and, perhaps, see the inside of an English pub. Bugger, I've only got three days left.
Wednesday 13: Trip to Hampshire to visit cousins John & Joe. A good pub meal and an entertaining evening, it's always good to touch base.
Thursday 14: Trip to Hertfordshire to see old friends Stef & Dudley. Another good entertaining meal and more lashings of red nectar.
Friday 15: Trip to Oxfordshire to see friends Rob & Debbie and more of the same.
Sunday 17: Long-haul flight out of London Heathrow to escape the British winter.
Slideshow of England: London (mostly of my refurbished apartment).

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