Stop press news: our decorator resigned. She works with the builder who has now been replaced, and she didn't feel comfortable with the situation. Fair enough. Despite this, things are gradually improving: Alf came round to look at some of the work that needs doing, which has been accumulating over the seven years we have been living here.
Some of it will be fresh in your minds: the bathroom, the hole in the living room ceiling. Other stuff I have mentioned before: the loft ladder and the parquet, which has swelled following the water leak making a patch of floor dome-shaped rather than flat. The rest of the work that needs doing takes the form of a long-term project to keep Alf well remunerated for the remainder of his working life - essentially all the damage repair, reconstruction and decoration in all of the rest of the house, inside and out, except for the three rooms we have already done. And it looks like we have some damp in an outside wall. Now Alf needs to tell us when he can start.
The other brief interlude I have failed to mention so far was a chap who came round last week to talk to us about our Russian Vine. This is a prolific trailing weed that brightens up the autumn by producing foliage and white blossom all over the back wall. Our recent visitor owns the nursing home whose garden backs onto ours and the pub's, and whose problem is that this vine is gradually knocking down his wall. We went round to have a look, but the roots and trunk of the plant actually lie somewhere between all of our walls, not in any of the three gardens. So it looks as though the problem will only be solved if the plant is killed.
Are you fed up of these house-related stories? Well, we went out last night to a pub quiz with the ex-badminton crew. We picked up some fresh Bee News (on mating with the Queen Bee, the lucky drone is rewarded by imploding) and we were doing pretty well in the quiz, in joint first place at half time. Unfortunately, the picture round crushed us into fourth place. It was a great night out nevertheless, but not enough sleep on a school night and two long lectures today about the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease means I'm looking forward to a lie in tomorrow.