How we spent our May Bank Holiday

From my 13 years of living amongst the British, making keen cultural observations, I have gathered that there are three main Bank Holiday Weekend activities.  Going on a long weekend away on the motorway with several thousand other cars, decorating/DIY and hosting (or going to) a BBQ.  As it usually rains, options 1 and 3 are not only somewhat unpleasant, but the focus of much ironic humour.  Oh, let’s not forget Option #4:  complaining about the bank holiday.

Steve and I spent our May Bank Holiday .  .  .  .  .  .   painting!  We’ve finished our flat with the exception of Steve’s garret and the kitchen.  As we come to the end of our 2nd year of marriage, my husband has really come in to his own DIY-wise.  I suspected as much, since his dowry included things like a Makita drill, two screwdriver sets, a socket set, wood chisels and a Dremel.  He’s very good at the fiddly bits of decorating, like trim and edges where two vastly different shades meet (like convergent boundaries in plate tectonics) and have to be touched up about four times, until it’s neatly finished.   Where I get impatient and frustrated and go off to make a cup of tea every 20 minutes, Steve patiently stays and finishes the job.  We’ve nearly got the salon back in order today.  I just need to touch up a few places where we hung a picture rail.

We also hung picture rails in the long gallery outside of my studio, so we can change the pictures and hangings quickly without having to patch up nail holes.  This will be very handy when I have an open studio and want to cover the walls with my artwork.  I hung Suncast Shadows up this weekend.

We finished our bedchamber and put the furniture back into place.  The red wall looks fabulous with our wedding quilt Cleaved against it.  I was really nervous when I started to paint it, but figured, ‘What the hay!  If it comes out too dark or too red, we can paint over it’.  I like where this wall is placed, so that it’s only viewable from inside our bedchamber which is the only non-public room in our flat.  Feels like the true heart of our home.

We went to a strange place called Trago Mills for some more paint on Monday.  Trago Mills is a department store-cum-amusement park-cum-animal park with a very tacky air about it.  I have to be in the right sort of mood to go and the key is to have a list and get in and out quickly.  Since it was a holiday I wanted some entertainment so we went to see if Sooty’s TV Concert has been repaired.  We lost 10p in it about a year ago (but got it back).  We found it, put our 10p in and it still didn’t work!  But I looked behind it, switched the power point, gave it a thump and Sooty and his band played to a 78rpm version of Modern World by The Jam, which seemed to be coming out at 67rpm.

“This is the modern world, we don’t need no one”

For those of you who don’t know, Sooty is Britain’s favourite yellow glove puppet bear and he’s been around since 1952.

Sooty, Matthew Corbett, Sweep & Soo

Sooty is Paul Buckler


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