Tuesday 8th. April, 2014 – a change of plan 

A picture of Tom on my new ladder fixing the ventilation shaft on the roof of one of the barns

I awoke this morning in the middle of a very confusing dream. I haven’t a clue what it was about (I couldn't even remember any of the details) but it felt as if it had been going on all night and didn’t seem to make much sense.

I got up and walked Mix before breakfast and then met with Tom. Our plan had been to start to fix the floor beams in the large barn but unfortunately the cement had not cured, so that will have to wait until later. This challenged us to think about our timetable. We were rushing on, in part, so that once the floor had been laid we could move everything from the other large barn into this one and so secure everything from the damage done by the swallows who are due to arrive before very long. We decided that instead of doing this we would try to make the other barn ‘swallow proof’. The first thing we did was to unpack my new ladder, discovering in the interim that the ladder was damaged (with a hole in the aluminium not far from the base). We telephoned the company who immediately agreed to collect it on Thursday and deliver another one in its place.

With the ladder we examined first the ventilation sections of the roof. At present these are protected (inadequately) with wire netting. We accessed the one ventilation area which could only be got at from the main road and, taking advantage of the fact that the road is closed at present, we boxed it in with wood. Tomorrow we will buy additional wood so that we can do the same things for the other side of that barn and for the other large barn.

Next we uncovered all of the pipe ventilators in the exterior walls of the barn and stuffed them with plastic bubble wrap. Next time we have the cement mixer in operation we will complete that task. We checked the windows and made a temporary closing for the door. Another task which will be completed tomorrow. Finally I went on line and ordered ten swallow nesting boxes so that we can fit these under the eaves of the different barns and provide accommodation for the birds we will have made homeless on their return from Africa. That seems fair to me.

Tom went off to collect a bit for his trailer and I welcomed Robin and Helen, my friends from Bishopbriggs days. We had a picnic lunch in the summer house, I showed them around our projects, and then we went for a walk across the bridge and down one of the local country lanes. The sun was shining brightly and it was a lovely walk. Back home we discovered that Jim, a friend of Mum’s (and of mine) from Dundee days, was visiting. We all had afternoon tea together in the Granary before first Jim and then Robin and Helen set off for home.

I came across to the summer house to start work on the music for Arrochar next Sunday and soon it was time for our evening meal after which Rachel and I retired to the Granary and relaxed in front of the stove (and the television. We watched Shetland, which included a scene filmed in the village hall at Luss -- although the village hall was masquerading as the village hall in Fair Isle). It has been another very good day.

Walked Mix and went to bed.


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