As was to be expected most of today was spent in hand-over activities and completing as much as possible "up front" as I know I am going to be very busy when I get back. My out of Office is now set and Tigger is clearly identified as the stuffed furry animal to be contacted if anyone needs anything.
I have had company here at home today as Andy & Steve are here to carry out the preparation for skimming of the Landing and Stairs. The original lime and horsehair plaster has stood up pretty well to the past two and a half centuries but there are a few areas where it is no longer bonded to the walls and the patching associated with building works and re-modelling mean that a skim is needed to pull it all together. Whilst removing the loose plaster S&A exposed one end of the oak lintel over the window. I made a quick styling decision and the entire beam was exposed. It will need a little attention with a wire brush but will look fantastic when surrounded by fresh smooth plaster.
S&A completed all the prep work and left having applied a bonding coat to the bare areas and a coat of PVA to all of the other walls. They will be back on Monday to apply the finish coat. After S&A had finished I switched off my Instant Messenger and took T&M for a walk...
... As I was nearing the end of the walk a Golden Retriever came charging towards us. He was trailing his lead but there was no sight of his owner anywhere. I recognised him as belonging to a local family that are currently doing their best to develop a bit of a reputation. I am no fan of the family and do my best to avoid them but could hardly leave their dog loose. There was also no way I was going to shake him off as he is intact and T&M are both in season. I am guessing that the children had been walking him and couldn't restrain him. He has a good nature but has not been trained and is VERY strong. I assume he got wind of T&M and simply followed his nose. I therefore ended up grabbing his lead, calming him down with a swift kick up the arse and taking him home. It came as a relief but no surprise that there was no-one at home to receive him. After waiting around for 5 minutes there was no sign of the family so I found the side entrance and shut him in the back garden. I'm sure he was safer there than running loose in the village.
Back home there was time for a quick coffee and a shower and shave before 30% and I drove over to The Bridge at Bidford on Avon for supper. This is a super little restaurant that 30% has dined at on a couple of occasions but it was my first visit. I have to report that it lived up to its reputation and was lovely*. The interior decor is a mixture of rustic and modern and it has a huge window running the full length of the dining area giving a view over the river. The food was great. I had chicken livers done in garlic and cream followed by Sea Bass with pasta, pesto and pine nuts followed by a Creme Caramel. 30% went for scallops and bacon to start, a very posh burger as her main and an Eton Mess variant for pud. It was a lovely start to the holiday and it was really nice to be out as a couple rather than as a family which is the norm nowadays.
We had coffee at home on the sofa and watched a film before retiring to bed knowing that the alarm will not need to be set for another ten days. Fantastic.
---* If I could make one tiny criticism, their food deserves linen napkins. Paper serviettes will never do and their tariff suggest they could bear the laundry costs.