Random Jottings Of Gildersleeve

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Location: United Kingdom

Perhaps you'll learn more about me as you read my blog. For anyone who translates my blog using the translator facility, don't forget if you wish to read the comments in your own language to click on the title of the post down the left hand side otherwise they will remain in english. Also I assume that the translation is accurate but I don't know, so please allow for errors.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

There's A Hole In My...

Bucket...that's what I want to sing as in the well known comic song but there will soon be a massive hole in my kitchen wall...I forget whether its 60cm or 100cm my memory isn't what it should be.

I'm all for the health and safety of people but it boils down to extra regulation of gas central heating systems.

We have numerous smoke alarms, a carbon monoxide alarm, we have at least 14 vents in windows and doors around the house. Plus lots of air circulating naturally. When I stand in the kitchen to cook a meal it so cold I am often happy to get out of the kitchen especially at night or during winter and close the door so the rest of the house isn't cold. We don't have a gas fire only a boiler for heating water and the central heating.

Nothing has changed for approx 18 years.

When the engineer arrived and serviced the boiler as he has for years, he said all was well but he felt the ventilation wasn't good enough so contacted his boss to come out and give his opinion.

He decided we have to have an extra hole but he says its so big it cannot go into any of the doors and so they are going to put it in the kitchen and it can only go in one place.

So it will colder and there will be an unsightly hole/grill on display.

The place that the hole is going means that I cannot put a washing machine there which as Mum is housebound more and more I need the facility of using a washing machine. And that is the only place left to put one(near to a drain and water supply)

So it looked as though I'm stuck with washing by hand in the bath and taking washing to the washing line in the garden.

Now, after another talk the next day he suggests that we can put a washing machine in front of the vent as long as we don't block it(That seems to defeat the reason for having the extra vent)

The day he visited, upon leaving he said "There is enough ventilation for you to use the boiler!" That statement again contradicts the insistence that we need that extra vent.

If there is enough ventilation why insist on this vent?

Even the engineer who called him said he thought that there was enough air circulating but that he wanted to cover his back.

If its your own home to some extent you have a say in what happens in your own home but in a situation like this and you rent from a council or Housing Association you have to do what you are told and you get to a point where there is nowhere/no one higher in the chain you can contact to question decisions made but you don't know whether its just a case of being a jobsworth.

I have talked this over with a few neighbours and others and most see it as way over the top.

Many companies doing contract building work for councils and Housing Associations have been so worried about their companies surviving(a couple have gone into receivership)so it could be a case of making work and/or trying to convince the landlord that they are needed.

So we'll just have to go along with it. Looking around other houses around here(Private and social)no one else seems to have had to have this work carried out but there was no way they are going to shift or compromise their stance.

This is not a rant as such more me just being worried and unhappy...If it turns out better than things seem at present I will be the first to say so.

Update:I told you I'd tell if things worked out better...

They arrived today around 9.30am and started to install the vent in the kitchen. All done in less than half an hour...

If I'd had the job done privately I'd have plastered around the pipe but that's all hidden behind the cover on the outside and the grill inside and both have been sealed around the edges.

It looks fine but here's the important thing its not anywhere as big as I was originally told it would be. The person who visited probably wondered what I was going on about but I definitely was told that it was going to be 66cms in size.

I was told that two or three times.

Now I wonder what all the bother was about. Its more like 20cms in size.

The person who called today also still thinks that I can put a washing machine there as long as I don't ram it up against the wall and block the vent.

So all in all its turned out much better than I thought.

But I can definitely feel cold air coming in and cooling that area of the kitchen down as night falls(so its doing its job)but you know we only use the bolier perhaps for an hour a day unless its a very chilly night and even then that would only be for maybe 2-3 hours. And again as its in the kitchen and the door to the rest of the house is closed we are unlikely to be any danger from fumes.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Those Petty Little Crimes...

That probably go unreported...

Thankfully I live in an area where I rarely hear of or see any crime(Lucky aren't I?)
So when suddenly little things start to happen you realise that even here things are not quite the same as they were.

You've seen the broken window...

Well, there is still a person who delivers soft drinks to the door and because I don't always know when he'll deliver I leave a note on the door with my order and the money and the empty bottles in the porch.

For years no problem...

We're not on the roadside and to reach our door you have to walk up a small drive and the front of the house is hidden behind a hedge and garden. The most frequent vistors would be a postman(I can say that because we only have postmen)someone else delivers a freesheet(neither touch the note or money)otherwise every three months someone reads the gas or electric meter.

So today I put the note on the door as usual...minutes later something came through the letterbox I looked to see what had been delivered by the mailman...I saw one of those plastic bags that charities put through asking for clothes for collection but noticed that my note had been pulled off the door.

I had only put it out maybe five minutes sooner...I rushed out and found no-one in sight...so I am fairly certain the same person delivering the charity bags took the money. And in his/her haste they even dropped an extra bag in the porch.

I was so quick out of the door I suspect they were unable to deliver any more bags in this street as we are located around the middle of the street and they couldn't have delivered to all the other houses that quickly.

But that doesn't prove that I am correct.

I am down by £2.40(not much)but I now have to wonder if they'll return and do it another week and of course I still had to pay for todays delivery so it has cost me double.

Despicable that someone doing charity work would steal money...but not worth trying to complain or report the incident as I did not see it happen and it could cause more bother than its worth.

The moral is that in future I'll try and guess when the the pop man will deliver and put the note on the door a little later in the morning when I think its less likely someone is snooping around.

Friday, June 17, 2011

A Cracked Window Pane...

Not the best image of the cracked pane but the best that I can do...

Having a visit from a PC or whatever they send these days when you report an incident...

Found the window in the little front bedroom has had a stone thrown at it(or is it an air rifle shot?)and we have a cracked piece of glass with a hole...I thought the landlord would accept our reporting of it and replace it. However if we don't get a incident number from the police we have to pay...

Luckily, its just the outside piece of glass not the inside pane of the double glazing...

I was never aware that you had to pay for your own windows when you rent. Hopefully, with this information from the police we won't be paying...

Well, there's the three visits from the landlord.

They say things happen in three's so we have the tree survey, the checking of our smoke alarms soon(I check them every week and had to replace a battery at 2am this very morning)and now the window needs replacing.

It took three attempts to get sorted with the police too...

I was put through to a department which I had to leave my number on an answer phone and be called back.

Then I phoned again having heard nothing and was told I should've been dealt with straight away(and not put through to leave a message on the answerphone)and was asked for my details, then when they started to give me a time for a PC to visit, the person couldn't hear me and eventually the line went dead.

The third time success...

Then two hours later the phone rang and it was the police replying to the message I'd left on the answerphone in the first place.

I think this could be only the second time I have had to come into contact with the police in my life. I don't mean this in a nasty way as I respect the police most of the time but I prefer to have as little contact as possible.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Keeping You Up To Date...

Been missing for a while as Mum hasn't been well. She needs care anyhow but now there's been a bit of extra care(Its a bit personal)

I think its Woman's trouble, no good being bashful. But hey, she would look after me(and has)so my turn to return the favour.

They have been back in touch for me to arrange a visit so they can check out our garden and trees.

Then a week or so later they're back to check the smoke alarms and Carbon Monoxide detector(It's for our safety)but as they are checked weekly by me and I put new batteries into them in December, I've done their work for them already.

The gardener came today and tidied up the front and back garden. Just as well if they are coming to see the trees...

Bad news, we have no fence as you may know because the neighbours fence was blown down recently. I think that's about the fourth or fifth time. We discovered when the gardener came today the neighbours dog has been coming into our garden and using it as a toilet(I stood in it)and then saw earlier deposits and in another area had dug a hole.

I'm popping a note through the letterbox later to tell them...and to think they are not replacing the fence for some months.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Andrew Gold...

I have said before...it is impossible to keep up with all the music that is available and has been recorded over the last 100 years. There are some artists whose work should be explored but for some reason you never get around to doing so.

There are groups and artists I have never heard and then you have some that you hear perhaps two or three hits played on the radio and that's the total sum of your knowledge.

Sadly, it has been reported that singer/song writer Andrew Gold passed away in his sleep after suffering a heart attack. But there are suggestions that possibly there were other serious health issues but who knows.

I guess the four songs that I know of his would be "Lonely Boy" "Never Let Her Slip Away" and the one used as the theme to the TV sitcom "Golden Girls" entitled "Thank You For Being A Friend" and one perfomed with Graham Gouldman under the name of Wax entitled "Bridge To Your Heart"

Some investigation on the Internet has already given some surprises such as that before his own success he worked with Linda Ronstadt and the biggest surprise of all is that his mother is Marni Nixon...A soprano who has probably had more of a career by not being so well known in her own right or that has made her infamous by being used by the motion picture industry to dub the singing of many actresses in musicals like West Side Story, The King And I and My Fair Lady.

And his father was Ernest Gold, composer for the movie "Exodus" for which he won an Oscar and another film which is a favourite of mine "Its A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World"

As often happens chances are we will now hear more of his music and I like many will start looking at his music output.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

I Don't Do Heat...

At the best of times(perhaps because of side effects of medication)or the condition, I get so hot I am tired and I drip with sweat.

So then when it gets very hot and there is little if any wind to cool you down when outside and as this country doesn't do nor with the concern about global warming/climate change they would not like you to install air conditioning...

I so welcome a good downpour. I have all the windows open day and night, I have a big electric fan going but I'm sure all that does is move hot air around the bedroom and as for attempting to sleep, if I manage it will be because I am exhausted otherwise I'm unable to and I don't have any clothes on(not a pretty sight)and no bedding and they say(the media)we can expect two months of this weather for June and July...

I hope that they are wrong...

I'd quite like the idea of standing in the garden and being rained upon...

Oh and I have computer problems(again)so more expense...my laptop is kaput. Another desktop that I record audio to hard drive cannot decide how long it wants to work, sometimes it will run for hours...other times it will stop every few minutes you never have any idea what it will do or any warning...I've contacted my repairman and so far had no reply so I wonder if he's on holiday...and how long before things are replaced or fixed and more to the point what is it all going to cost?

Friday, June 03, 2011

A Load Of Hot Air!

On my Birthday a few days ago coming over the roof of the house opposite mine and very low to ground was a hot air balloon...

By the time this unusual event happened and I managed to find a camera, memory card and some batteries, I thought that I had missed my chance to take a photo but luckily it was still visable but had disappeared down the street so I had to use a zoom and could not show it in relation to the property.

I suspect as it was such a still evening and weather was not too bad and logo on the balloon is of a large commercial company, it wasn't just someone out on a journey as a hobby but probably was and will be over the coming months be part of an advertising campaign for its range of mobile phones, cable, broadband.

It was fun to see though.