'I said; Hello, you fool, I Love you. Come join the Joyride'
|A possible career change?|
Moving to the countryside continues to present comparisons to the city. I've never really taken much notice of the radio in the car. I've always been able to find terrible dance music and rock out at speeds my Dad would be ashamed of. This is not possible in Gloucestershire. I assume we are all happy that Roxette is making a serious come back? If they haven't managed this nationwide and I am in the bubble of *StarFM then rest assured the royalties gleamed from the many tracks they play every hour are keeping the Swedish pop duo in leather trousers and peroxide for a few more years.
|Walking up Mayhill|
We've been getting out to see where we've moved to and Mayhill is simply stunning. We've been walking and breathing fresh air and cow poo. The views from the summit (really not done justice in this picture) are amazing. It takes about 40 minutes to walk to the top from the footpath on our land. We didn't even realise our location until this month as we fell in love with the old wreck first. We thought we were on the outskirts of a village called Longhope, which is lovely but lacks a pub but actually we are on the foothills of Mayhill, which seems to have a stronger community feel.
Mainly, I have spent the past month getting the plans ready so the last thing I've wanted to do is spend another minute in front of the computer. I do not know how I could ever go back to an office - so many cups of coffee to procrastinate. But now, finally - they are ready to submit. It turns out 3 Bed and Breakfast rooms just ain't going to cut it and so we decided the Yurts really is the way to go, which of course means we've had to explain all to the neighbours.
In visiting the neighbours some fantastic rumours about us have found their way out - namely the possibility of us starting a goat farm and that I might be a Middleton. I love this one most. A goat farming Middleton. Pippa did not get her bottom by eating Chevre.
Last week I sat in my sister-in-laws garden, on the swing looking at her veg patch, next to the chickens. That's why we moved, to have a nice country life. However, we've taken on a project we possibly can't afford and are about to embark on a project that is more than slightly controversial. Its been beyond difficult explaining the Yurts and trying to get across what and where they are. Its been a rollercoaster of a month with the epic size of what we are doing beginning to dawn on us. In less than confident moments I'm not sure I can do it but when I look at Arthur I know it has to be right to find a way from working from home, doing something I know I will do well, so I can be there as much as I can.
To update you on the house progress; we are waiting for the final report from the three surveys we had for the bats. They came at night and they came at dawn. We thought the little chaps might have left us, but it seemed only a vacation from the roost while Gary and his dad burnt all the carpets from the house. We all got a little high and then we realised there was cyanide in them.
When the Batman stood on the still warm embers and asked (through a skowl) when the fire was burnt and why - I thought we were for it. Do they actually have the power to arrest? I sort of wish I'd found out.
The bat people are very excited about our rare bats and one suggested we should have them as a tourist feature?! I suggested Batskin iphone covers.
It does seem though, that we should be able to do what we want to do with the cellar (the Ground Source Heat pump control room) but we have to get a licence from Natural England to basically say its okay if we accidently upset the bats. By the time we have finished the Bats will have cost us £1000 each. For 7 bats. I think it might have been less dramatic to go to prison. We are not entirely sure where this expense gets distributed?! perhaps the furniture. Yes. Sofa's are so 2011.
|I'm not entirely sure this is real - but it looks cool.|
They point it at the bats to measure the frequency of their sound.
So we could put in the Biodigester... it turns poo into gold. Or something....
Some EXTREME gardening has been happening. With a start from scratch attitude and power tools. Linda has been the master on this one and everything looks so much clearer. I made some blackcurrant and loganberry jam before the bushes got the chop and I've been trying to remove the Ivy from the front of the house but the roots are the width of my arm. Gutted we have to take it down but it is growing out of the roof so probably best.
The well is a go-er. Tests on the water are normal and it took nearly 3 days to pump out the water (such a waste) and it was full again within two. Mr Mills is over the moon. This is great news and means we can be not so reliant on mains water. Have to get it re-instated but its such good news and a saving on the future living costs. Still desperate not to have oil - but not sure we'll get the consent for the Ground pump. One estimate for Oil costs was in the region of £6000 a year. Thinking Air source or Biomass but trying all we can to be sustainable. It still costs a small fortune but its one of the great opportunities we have starting from scratch.
The house is finally clear of clutter and we are getting keen to get on now. Its a minimum of 8 weeks before the council have to give us a response but I know it will take much longer than that. I think these can count as our official 'before' shots - so what follows is a tour of the house and barn.
|Inside the barn. The hay loft will form the main bedroom.|
|The roof is getting worse with all the rain.|
|This will be the front door. Beautiful glass window and french doors at the back.|
|The main house. A 'sort of' kitchen. Keep the tiles?|
Any ideas for the finished article?
|The entrance hall. (Its a room in it's own right)|
Check out the ancient door knocker...
|The lounge. Very Loungy.|
|Where the washroom and toilets will be.|
|The landing - before Gary found the rats.|
|Up to the attic. Riddled with Deathwatch beetle.|
Yet another cost. And expertise I didn't think I needed
|Up in the attic. Will be two rooms with freestanding bath.|