Archive for the ‘House’ Category

We are all in the gutter but some of us are looking at the stars.

Monday, May 24th, 2010


Unfortunately our time had come to look into the gutters. Our kitchen sink hadn’t been emptying properly for some time and none of the drain cleaning products had worked. So we called a plumber. Unfortunately the first thing he saw was that our drain covers were cemented into place and so he told us that the problem was probably grease and detergent waste blocking the pipes and then he left. Fortunately, the water from the sink goes into the “pure water drain” and so cleaning it was a less daunting prospect.

So we set to work unsealing the drain cover and after two hours work we succeeded. We discovered the plumber was correct. All round the pipes was layers of congealed dishwashing powder, soap etc. We took out 14 litres (3 gallons) of gunge and finally as we flushed the tubes a great sausage of gunge came slipping out. Problem solved, we thought.

The next day the water was again draining away very slowly. So with a “snake” i.e. a long length of thin spring used to unbloke drains we set to work and managed to make the problem worse. Obviously other crude in the pipe and got together and my prodding and poking had simply impacted it.

So we went down to the local Do it yourself shop in search of some inspiration and Bill saw an drain cleaning attachment for our high pressure hose. 65 euros poorer we returned home and set to work. After an hour of pushing and prodding the new attachment seemed to get through the crud and the water drained away. The following day we were back giving the tubes a final blast of water but in fact the problem seemed to be as bad as ever as the cleaning tube hit another piece of hard crud.  Another hour of work and we got through to be met by another couple of blockages. Finally after another hour of work water flowed through with a vengence and hopefully problem is resolved.

New gate

Thursday, May 13th, 2010
new railing new railing

 Having for a long time worried about people falling down the steps at the back of the house we have opted for “Health and Safety” and had railing and gate put on the steps.  Bill has now painted the concrete grey of the steps with the sage green of the rest of the house and the whole place looks better and is certainly much safer.

House given a name

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009
margaret Finally, after three years we have put up the house name. Its named after our friend Margaret. When Margaret died, she left us her house in England. Selling the house in England enabled us to buy the house in Italy. So it only seems right to name the house after her. 
house name

Spot the difference

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009
street lamp street lamp

Until this morning the entrance to our parking bay had been blocked by a street lamp. One could get in but with difficulty. We had asked whether it would be possible to have it moved or removed but hadn’t really expected anything to happen. Then this morning we noticed the mayor and a workman looking at the lamp and a couple of hours later the light was gone and now we can get onto our parking space with ease. Thank you San Giorgio.

House painting starts again

Monday, May 11th, 2009

back of house painted

Having painted half the house last year we decided it was time to finish the job. Bought a new ladder which enabled us to reach the highest parts of the house and began painting.  It was a slow job as the ladder is heavy and we spent lots of time making sure it was balanced as we didn’t want to fall onto the concrete terrace

We are still not finished but we are on the home strait and we are pleased with the results.

Traffic control

Friday, April 3rd, 2009

traffic sign

Between our house and the castle wall there is  narrow road which becomes narrower as you reach the junction.  The apartments at this point on the road have had the down pipe from the gutter dented a few times and their wall has some colourful scrapes where Italian drivers thought they could squeeze their cars through. Beside the down pipe there is also gas pipes which so far remain undented.  Early last year there was talk of the council closing the road but in the few days that we were away it happened. 


Sunday, March 22nd, 2009

living room beams

Over the last week Bill has been working steadily at impregnating the beams in the living room. They are now a light walnut with a wax finish.

New floors

Friday, February 20th, 2009
old floor new floor

Over the last couple of weeks we have been living in dust and chaos as a new floor is being laid in the oldest part of the house. The old tiles will be recycled and used to create pathways in the garden.

Second coat is on.

Sunday, September 21st, 2008
bloghousesecondcoat.jpg HERE IS THE BEFORE AND AFTERbloghousestart.jpg

One coat done

Thursday, September 18th, 2008
House with the first coat Today we finished the first coat and are pleased with the result. During the day the neighbours came to watch and comment and so far all of them like the colour.