Tuesday, 3 November 2009

loft conversion, update, lights

I no longer need to go upstairs (still a new word in my home vocabulary!) with a lamp afixed to a band round my head like a miner's helmet :-)

The lighting system is now up and running, or glowing, I suppose I should say. I chose simple white globes which could accommodate energy efficient bulbs, in keeping with my green outlook, and they look fine.

Did you know that nowadays an electrician will only fit approved lights in a bathroom? Well, he will. Fortunately the one I had chosen was an approved model, as well as coming complete with its very own energy saving lamp.

The other thing the electrician insisted that he was obliged to fit, was a mains operated smoke alarm. Here it is, adjacent to the globe at the base of the stairs. I hope, that since it is sited here, by the new porch, and thus a whole room and hallway distant to the kitchen, that its dulcet tones will not be heard too regularly.

I should tell you that when I was growing up, we knew the toast was ready when we heard Mum scraping off the burnt bits over the sink. Even with a toaster she had the capacity to burn bread. Some skills are valuable, that one, alas, was not. Funny thing was that she baked lovely bread, really well. It was just toast that she couldn't manage.
The reason for telling you that small historical fact is so that you will understand that when I have toast, I like it to be really well done - it's what I was brought up on. Sadly, smoke alarms tend to believe I'm burning something, they can't appreciate the subtle difference between beautiful dark brown toast, and charcoal. I can.
So, I have glowing lights, and a smoke alarm. All working. I have new switches, some of them two way, to illuminate my "upstairs" :-)
The grey snake appearing out of the tiles is not, as you might imagine, the trunk of an emaciated elephant, it is the cable which will breathe life into the shower. Maybe tomorrow. We'll see.

I also have ......... - wait for it - ................ radiators! Yes, really, radiators, fastened to the walls, and linked up to the central heating system. Wow! One of them cost me a couple of pounds at a charity auction, a few years ago, the other I bought new at the weekend. Look at how neatly they are fixed, though! Aren't they neat?? No pipes coming up from the floor, they're new plastic water pipes, of a very small diameter, which enter the rooms through the stud walling. Beautiful - thanks Paul :-)
Actually, I think, if you look really hard, you can spot the bathroom radiator coyly appearing in refelection in the mirror, so you didn't really have to wait for it at all, but that would have spoiled the drama somewhat!
It's nearly all over, as far as the workmen are concerned. Rob and Paul, the builders, Kevin, the carpenter, Paul the plumber, and Ian, the electrician have been an integral part of my life for the past three and a half weeks, off and on. They've all been lovely blokes to have around, and I'd have any one of them back to do any extra work that's needed in future.
Rob reckoned it would take them four to six weeks, and despite the builing inspector insisting on extras, like the ventilation roof tiles at £7+ each (45 of them, no less! ), things have proceeded well, and they've finished within time. Well, Rob did get Mario (such lovely curly hair, makes me remember insisting my mum cut all mine off when I was about three), in to do the majority of the plastering to save time, but even so, they've done well.
This saga is nearly at an end - apart from the painting and oiling I now need to do to decorate it all :-) Talk to me nicely and I might tell you a little about that, too.

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