Wednesday, 28 July 2010


What a difference a day can make. Our little shop of horrors has begun to be a thing of beauty. We had an early start as we were expecting Bob at around lunch time so thought, if we put in a good mornings work, we could afford a few hours off for a leisurely lunch. I began by tackling those dratted habberdashery drawers. Steve had managed one coat the night before, so each needed a second coat of primer then a third of Crown 'Lady Jane'. What a bother, but i just had to grit my teeth and get on with it.

Finally, I had put the last coat on all eight remaining drawers and if I never see Lady Jane Crown emulsion again, it will be too soon.

Once they had dried I had the satisfying task of correctly placing them in their respective shelves. This should have been an easy task but it has been a common theme with old furniture we have worked on. We forget that before the days of Scandinavian efficiency and the likes of Ikea and flat packed furniture, master craftsmen were responsible for producing hand built, original pieces each with their own unique character and foibles, so seemingly identical drawers are not at all and each of the twelve drawers had their own space they had occupied since time immemorial.

There! All done. All that remains is to figure out what will go in them? Hmmmmm? For now it will function as a very pretty Roxy anchor.

Meanwhile, Steve had begun putting up the much awaited shop fascia. From the minute the first piece went up, we knew this would be a turning point in the shop front's appearance.

By lunch time Steve had completed fixing all the boards and it looked fabulous! Just in time for Bob's arrival.

Bob Howe has recently won a Mo award in Australia (his second) and has been in the music industry for 20 odd years. He toured for many years with Frank Ifield. He and his Mum were what were known as £10 Poms. In the 70's, to encourage UK immigration, a heavily subsidised passage to Australia cost just £10. Bob was 13 at the time and began a new life down under with his fabulous and courageous Mum. All these years later and across the world, we found ourselves reliving some old times, catching up on family news and enjoying the mystery of the fine thread that runs through it all; genealogy. What a truly inspiring and lovely man and I was reminded of a line from a song; "....with a sun burnt soul and a hunger for the road." (it must have been that Rolling Stones concert he attended at the Rugby Town Granada when he was just 8 years old) I feel sure that this was the first of many happy catch ups. Thanks Bob.

Later we returned to our 'salt mine' with a spring in our step and possibly had the most productive evening we have had in a while. Steve whacked up the architraving and managed to paint it just before the rain started to lightly drizzle down. More Bruce Forsyth (nice to see you, to see you nice) than Mr. Universe.

I managed to undercoat most of the remaining shop front and by 9.30 pm the shop had taken on a whole new look.

Even the Roxola was impressed. (Although, she still hasn't mastered how not to let her legs slide out from under her on the slippery laminate flooring - not a good look lady!)

We left last night feeling good about ourselves and about a day filled with building happy bridges.

1 comment:

  1. G'Day cousins! Thanks for a lovely visit and your hospitality. All the best for the big opening of the shop. You deserve great things after all your hard work. Love Bob