Friday, 7 June 2013
Cement And Sunshine
It's been a busy week here and I've had little time to be indoors on the computer. My house is old and requires repointing so I spent a couple of days taking off most of the cement pointing the last owners daubed all over it, in preparation for my lovely 81 year old builder to arrive sometime soon.
As I was finishing late yesterday afternoon, Jimmy pulled up in his van. "I cannae start til the end o' the month," he said, "The wife's organised a wee holiday in Devon then war gaun on yon train up the west coast." It appears it'll be a few weeks I have to wait, but by all accounts, it'll be worth it. The plants I have ready to put in the small borders will just have to be placed somewhere else.
It took months to find Jimmy because I wanted the pointing done correctly and not just more cement slapped on the sandstone. There are no builders with the skill of applying lime mortar around and when I discussed this with Jimmy recently he insisted that the young don't want to get out of bed in time to meet work's requirements. Throughout his working life he's taken on many apprentices and 'they've all gone on tae earning a good living' (his words), but in the past 15 years he stopped. Why? Because he was weary waiting for them to arrive for work and the knock-on effect was the customer felt let down.
After meeting Jimmy for the first time I made some enquiries round and about, as you do. Most people didn't realise he was still working as he'd been very ill with prostate cancer a couple of years ago, but everyone spoke highly of his standard of workmanship.
I noticed last night he was, not so discreetly, examining my standard of cement removal. "I'll sort that nae bother. Ye've done yer best I can see." I thought so too. Perhaps I was a little too careful because I'm aware the sandstone crumbles easily.
Oh, the image is my first basket for this year. I'm trying out the type which requires no liners. It's now hanging in it's place and the other four have been completed. Amazing the energy a little sunshine gives!