Saturday 22 December 2012

The shortest day... and the start of Winter

Yes, you read right.  In England, the seasons change on the equinox for Spring and Autumn and the Summer and Winter solstice.  In Australia our Summer officially starts on 1st December with the other seasons at the beginning of every quarter thereafter. 

Today is also the shortest day and that sounds good to us!  We've found we've been sleeping longer with it still being dark so late in the morning and by 4pm it feels like the day is over.  We still have the whole Winter ahead of us but with the days slowly getting longer I'm sure we'll manage.

Last night I was up til after midnight doing last minute work.  It was my last chance to get files back to the offices before they close for the holidays.

This morning we decided we'd walk into Stone.  We picked up a few bits and pieces, sat down for a coffee and as we headed back it began to drizzle.  I guess we might as well get used to walking in the rain.  It will happen again.

After lunch Mick got to work with the solid fuel stove.  Following my earlier blog entry about whether to position it square on to the hearth or on an angle... the angle won out.  It will be easier to access it as the door handle is on the left (against the wall).  A few comments mentioned ease of removing ash as a good reason for putting it on an angle.  Once we made the decision Mick set about cutting a hole in the ceiling in preparation for the flue.  What a messy business that was!  There was also a bit of swearing going on - followed by a phone call to Roger for advice.  So now we have a dirty great hole in the ceiling, dripping condensation.  One step closer to the goal.

After dinner I decided I'd have a go at making mulled wine.  I'd found a packet of mulled wine spice sachets in the supermarket the other day.  All was well with the pot bubbling on the stove and next thing the gas alarm went off!  We rushed around opening windows and doors with Mick having a stress attack.  Goodness it's an annoying noise.  Eventually silence returned amidst much flipping of pages in our "boat bible", the gas stove turned off, and me waving a towel around.  A quick google search revealed the fact that the fumes of mulled wine set of gas alarms.  Honestly!!  Read this... and this...

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