We interrupt this unprecedented blog silence to bring you all the exciting news that this is officially a Very Good Day.
Driving past church this morning, I can see the car park full of barriers and works vehicles and general organised mayhem. This makes me very happy. After long years of delay, after archaeological digs, and once the bats have flown, finally work has begun. The first thing most people see when they pass our church is a line of shoddy, gently undulating, beautiful but very closed and forbidding ancient (400 years old) barns. No, we're not knocking them down! We're rebuilding them, opening them up, turning them from leaky and slightly dodgy storage into a coffee shop and meetings place. The big doors which bar entry from casual passersby will be replaced with light and airy openings, and the musty damp aroma with the ever welcome scent of coffee. It won't happen overnight, but God willing, Spring 2013 we night have something rather special. Link is from this time last year, when we also thought we might be just about ready to make a start. It's really good to see the progress now.
Continuing my (ridiculously short but I was running late) drive, I make it to the Little Princess' school. Where more building works are being planned - to ensure that there is a suitably equipped Changing Places style disabled loo at the senior end of the school. Excellent. And, in the meantime, relatively minor alterations to tLP's school wheelchair are sufficient to ensure she can now sit without twisting, lessening the force of her windsweeping and increasing scoliosis. hurrah.
Home, and a terribly exciting parcel has arrived and for once actually been left for my arrival. 180 240 new-style catheters and a small mirror. Increased independence, here we come. The post arrives, and in it comes confirmation of continued respite provision for both girls at Helen House. Many cheers, and the desire to book as many visits as possible with a view to catching up on some serious amounts of sleep. A birthday card too, reminding me of my own obligations there.
And so a trip to the newsagent's, where, in common with all the other shops I've tried for the past week, I discover it is not possible to be a 4 year old boy or a 7 year old girl. Not if you want a card with an age badge on it, anyway. I find a "Birthday Girl" badge card and hope this will be acceptable.
Onwards, and time for the van to have its annual MOT. Which it passes, without even any advisory points. Excellent news! I fill up with diesel (let's not think too hard about the fact it cost me £105 to do so and instead concentrate on the fact that I can), and just happen to find my way around the first Ice Cream Snickers of the year.
And so, buoyed up with all the general Good Things, I decide to phone the powers that be about my boiler troubles (it has asbestos in it so no one will service it, but replacing it requires access to the loft which means going through my upstairs neighbour's house and needs permission of multiple agencies, all very complicated). And, after an annoying 15 minutes on hold and being charged for the privilege, I learn it is going to be even more complicated than I thought, and that I can do precisely nothing at all about it and nor can the people I was calling. My buoys have sprung a serious leak.
But, the sun is still shining, I don't need the heating for now anyway, and I have alternative access to hot water. And there's a kitten on my shoulder, and a Birthday present to wrap. And did I mention, the sun is shining and it's a beautiful day? It's almost enough not to be bothered by the lack of a boiler. Almost...