03/06/2014

In the morning I repaired yet another tractor tyre (one of the spares) with the “assistance” of three of the chickens, who seemed convinced there were Things To Eat inside the tyre. I finally got rid of them by starting up the new compressor, and directing some compressed air in their direction.

We have been using the aged FIL’s Citroën as a runabout for the last few months, in order to give the Renault 5 a rest. This turned out to be a good thing; as it was normally housed in the aged FIL’s garage. Which, if you remember, recently burnt down. However, about two weeks ago, LSS shut the door of the Citroën, and the drivers door window shattered into a million tiny pieces. Fortunately this sort of thing is covered by the aged FIL’s insurance policy, so no costs were involved. At noon today was the scheduled visit by the agent from Carglass. This is the equivalent to Autoglass in the UK (in fact it’s the same company, and even their television advertisements are the same. Except they’re in French, of course.) The company offers a mobile windscreen repair service, and also fix other vehicle glazing issues. But the icing on top was that Carglass were so delighted that we were using their services, they offered us new windscreen wipers, free of charge. LSS said we didn’t need new wipers for the Citroën, but if they were offering, we’d like some for the Hyundai. So we now have new wipers for her car.  This is the second vehicle glass replacement this year. The first time, LSS decided to wash the Renault 5. When she directed the hosepipe onto the windscreen, it cracked in two (the windscreen, not the hosepipe). Things happen in threes, they say. I wonder if we’ll be calling the insurance company again soon.

After the Citroën had been repaired, LSS decided to use the tractor to cut the grass in the fields and alleyways using the brushcutter attachment. She stopped here for a break, and mentioned that the tractor was starting to smell a bit hot. After some discussion she decided to return to the aged FIL to add some oil (which we haven’t done for a while). On the way there she realised that the reason the tractor was smelling hot was that she had once again forgotten to release the transmission handbrake. I think I should just disconnect it.

The thermal store control panel has been assembled and given its first coat of paint. I constructed it out of plywood, and although I think it would have looked better with a natural finish, we’ve found that the only way to keep mould from appearing on wooden surfaces is by painting them. When we visit the UK towards the end of the year we’ll be stocking up on tins of paint as well; it’s horribly expensive in France.

I also gave the solar panel glass one final clean, and applied a coat of Rain-X. This should help to keep the glass clean for a bit longer! The bottle of Rain-X is a remnant of my motorcycle commuting days; I used to use it on the windshield of the ST1100, and also on my helmet visor.

Another little task achieved today was to fix some wheels to the generator frame. There was an old pram in the barn when we moved in (it used to be occupied by LSS when she was little!) and the solid-tyred spoked wheels have come in very handy. At least the generator can now be moved from place to place without having to carry it!

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