I always had Dan’s voice rumbling in the back of my head that I should be putting a hardcore base beneath my concrete. It nagged at me. Kept me awake at night. Until finally I cracked. I lifted up the paving stones – which I was just being lazy by burying – and ordered some more wood to go with a couple of bulk bags of hardcore. I specifically ordered the hardcore as bulk bags to be delivered on a truck with a hoist so that they could drop them into the dug out base hole. The guy turned up, took one look and told me there was “no chance” the arm would lift the bag over the bushes. He didn’t even have a go … that’s the problem with people today – no willingness to go the extra mile to help ME!
So anyway, I spent a couple of days wheelbarrowing two bulk bags [ or about 2 tonnes ] of stones around the bushes and into my hole. I then hired a compression plate and the end result looked like this :
Slightly before doing all this the pubs in England re-opened. So I took a break for a while and met up with Paul and Jason. Paul and I started discussing concrete pouring techniques and he put me onto the concrete poker. It’s basically a vibrator but I think people in the building industry are averse to using that word. Turns out the poker/vibrator was a genius idea of Paul’s. He also told me about how to use a float, which is you rotate the handle to change the angle of the float and have it skim across the surface of the concrete giving you a neat finish. This came in incredibly useful when the chap at the tool hire shop asked me if I knew how to use it. “Sure”, I replied “you just twist the handle and change the angle right?” – the tool hire guy replied affirmatively and added “you wouldn’t believe how many people bring it back and say they couldn’t make it work”. We exchanged knowing glances and eye-rolls and I swaggered off with my pride intact.
The day of the concrete pour arrived and it was a beautiful morning. No wind, no rain, sunshine – but they did arrive at about 7.30am.
So the stressful bit is now done. I’ve never poured concrete before and if it had gone all wrong then it would have been a proper PITA to sort it out. From now on it’s just laying a few bricks and screwing together some wood…famous last words.
During a recent impromptu garden party where we basically started drinking at 11am and didn’t quite get around to stopping until I couldn’t speak anymore and then proceeded to sit on the toilet with the lid down and crack it and then wake up next morning wondering who the bloody hell broke my toilet…we played chess.
I played Nigel – who I reckon is some sort of secret Grandmaster because he kicked my arse at least twice – that I remember. I firmly believe that it’s his Grandmaster-dom rather than me constantly confusing my Bishop for my King, or my pawn for my Queen. Anyway, it got me interested in Chess again and so Charlie and I had an evening of sipping some fine wines and drinking some fine rum and playing some less-than-fine Chess.
So I always have an omelette for breakfast on weekdays. It’s always two eggs, always chorizo, always cheese and then sometimes mushrooms, sometimes tomato and sometimes red pepper. That’s not the weird bit.
I noticed this morning that I always put my omelette ingredients on the left side of the omelette and always fold from right to left…thusly
I generally use the same ring on the hob too – which always reminds me of a r/casualuk post asking if anyone had a favourite ring on the cooker. Seems I do, for omelettes at least.
This is likely to be a series of blog posts as it’s going to be quite the saga. As I mentioned in my earlier post I intend to be drinking wine and building sheds. The wine drinking is pretty much covered – so I thought we’d make a start on building a proper shed
Next step – building the rebar supports and pouring concrete – I told you it was going to be an epic!
It had to happen sooner or later but 1st April 2021 is when it actually occurred. I’ve finally finished working for Sky. I started by developing v2 of the Android Sky News app in West Cross House, then moving on to work on the Sky Sports app. I left for a year to work in Manchester but then got drafted back into Sky to work on the super top secret Sky Q app. When I started working on this project I couldn’t be told what the project was until I signed up – which was all a bit weird. Had an absolute whale of a time with the mobile app development team, made many great friends [ Dragan, Josh, Michal, Doc et al ] and one mortal enemy – I still maintain that Eran Boudjnah [ or whatever the fuck he’s called ] is a monumental fucking bell-end
After several years of working on Android I made the move to the EPG team where I worked with Stu and Dave and many other amazing people. Then Rishi Sunak came along and introduced IR35 and it all kinda went tits up. Ho hum.
So here we find ourselves in the middle, or hopefully coming to the end, of a global pandemic and yours truly wondering what to do next. The obvious move is to drink wine and build sheds – so to that end I’d like to thank my colleagues at Sky that clubbed together and bought me something wet and red – it was lush
This is the black cat that Willow [ our proper cat ] absolutely hates. Whenever the black cat comes into our garden Willow makes this god awful noise. It’s kind of like a moany cat scream with added wailiness. So I properly got into trouble for giving the black cat some food. Seems it’s ok for everyone else in the house to adopt waifs and strays – except for me!
Charlie has been whining that all the blog posts about him make it look like he just stands around doing nothing – so he put a bit of extra special effort in to do stuff and then made me take pictures of him.