Well, we hadn’t heard anything regarding our planning permission to install the new windows in the barn, so LSS called the Mairie. As I suspected, the lack of news just meant that everything was fine; so we can now go ahead. I will be constructing some reinforced concrete lintels first, but this work will start after my sister’s visit. At least I have now installed the electricity supply to the barn, and as a temporary measure have fixed a fluorescent light to a beam above the new bathtub.

To support the feet of the bath on the new floor, I laid some old tiles in a bed of lime mortar. Next week will see the start of the plumbing work, and by the end of the week we should have a fully functioning bathroom.

I dug a trench leading from the reedbed solar panel installation to the house, and laid sections of 16mm plastic pipe containing two electrical wires. This will bring 12V power to our Separett composting toilet, and should trim a minuscule amount from our electricity consumption! The required holes have also been drilled through the barn wall for the Separett installation; 20mm for the 12V power supply, 33mm for the urine waste pipe, and 86mm for the Separett ventilation pipe. I’m very glad I own a rotary hammer;  it made short work of these.

Next to the bathroom is an opening in the end wall of the house leading to an unused space above the pantry. There’s not really much room to swing a cat up there, not that we indulge in any cat-swinging, of course. But it could be a handy storage area, and I think it could also be the new location for the VMC (house ventilation extractor fan). However, this area had probably not been cleaned since the house was built in 18xx. I therefore set up the stepladder, and took out a full wheelbarrow load of dust, sand, straw, mouse-droppings, dead insects, bits of wood, and old bricks.

We also fetched another 700kg of sand with the trailer; we now have sufficient for any lime rendering I feel like doing. I must admit rendering is not a job I enjoy.

The horsefly trap has been reinstated in the garden, and is already functioning nicely.

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