Our last full day with the grandsons today, and as it’s the weekend, we get the day with Olek too – yay!!
There is a place near Dumfries that we are taking them this morning – a garden centre that has a dinosaur display. We will also equip ourselves with towels and beach stuff and plenty of cash to make the most of our last opportunity to provide them with the thing all grandparents have an obligation to do – junk food! Well, not really, but we will buy lunch and ice-creams, I am sure.
Yesterday while Karol was at nursery I went off to the hardware shop in Castle Douglas and bought all sorts of stuff for the boat:
· marine varnish, associated clean up stuff and sandpaper; all for use in re-coating some of the wooden doorframes that are a bit weather-beaten,
· a tube of no more nails to glue the wooden lining of the Houdini hatch back on to the metal,
· a tube of silicone, initially to seal a screwhole in the superstructure that we saw a large number of ants exiting in the warmth of the sunshine one afternoon down by Bridge 25 (it is important to keep busy and observant while quaffing chardonnay in the sunshine – must keep the mind alert!) Note to self: find ant killer – jabbing them with a forefinger one at a time as you see them crossing the kitchen bench is not an effective solution. The silicone will also be used to seal the frame of a piece of safety glass (not yet purchased but planned for) that we are going to attach to the wall at the business end of the bath to prevent water escaping around the shower curtain on to the floor then out the door and down into the cabin bilge …
· draught sealer for around the pigeon box flaps
· 3 offcuts of wood
o one thin strip to be attached to the end of the engine cover – the current one detached recently. This one will be glued and screwed. Not sure of its longevity as it is so thin and the screws will be going into the end of the board with the grain of the wood, which is the weakest way for holding, hence the glue as well,
o one piece to have two pieces cut from it to act as props to hold open the pigeon box flaps (I was going to buy dowel which is more attractive but I would have had to buy a whole length and only use about 12 inches. That seemed a waste, so I found an offcut of 2x1 that was significantly cheaper …
o one piece of 3x3 roughsawn which I will probably see if our son can plane to be a bit smoother and then I will varnish it. It will live on the roof and act as a buffer to stop the Houdini hatch landing on the adjacent mushroom vent when opened.
· a chisel and a small wood saw
Then it was off to Argos at Dumfries to get a camping table to fit in the cratch and to use on the towpath, a battery drill (I have always wanted one of these!) and a set of drill and screw driver bits. I bought a small sewing machine too for making sound-proofing curtains. They may be adorned with egg cartons if the material, the bump (that’s what the women in the drapers called it – the additional thick cotton lining to keep out cold) and the lining aren’t effective enough – back in the 80s when David was a video producer they soundproofed a studio using egg cartons as supplementary material. So I am going to start saving them!
OK, time to breakfast the boys and let their mum and dad have a bit of a lie in. Need to get it done before the rugby starts – I don’t want England to win against the All Blacks, but maybe another very close game or even (I can’t believe I am saying this) a draw would help compensate for them being already on their way home from the Football World Cup. David tells me the have another game to play before getting on the plane, so I am not technically correct, but you know what I mean …