The Stank

Visited Pauline et al last weekend and had a fine time. Craig was off work on Friday and we climbed the Ben; Jackie allowed me to gatecrash her Sunday at the Edinburgh food festival; so I got to see everyone, even Anne from over the way. All sent a Hello to Monica.

Life has been and continues to be hard for them at the Stank so I hope the housing market moves and they can get somewhere easier soon. I’m sure they’d miss the place badly but not the work involved in living there.

The Annie sold easily because the neighbour was keen to extend his land, which must highlight the delay in selling the Stank. It sounds like they hoped to grab a couple of new houses in Doune but that opportunity has passed.

It *is* beautiful there but I’m very glad we didn’t take on the life they have. I find it hard to step outside here when there’s a hint of ice. After three months of it, there, I’d be ready to move back to Adelaide.

We are making progress slowly at Warland. We’ve just signed up to have a micro-hydro turbine installed (though it’ll take months to get approval) and I’m about to, finally, unbox my bikes. Several of the in-laws’ sheds are being disgorged into our barns so that they can triage their rubbish and renovate before refilling their shelves. Kevin is pleased to be able to drop one of the shipping containers he’s been renting forever. Monica is also helping him get his other house finished by taking over the project management of the work and bullying him into making some decisions about how he’d like to live there.

Monica is, at the same time, struggling to keep her gallstones calm by limiting her diet even further. Her gall bladder will be excised in January and, hopefully, we can get back to hearty stews and roasts, without pepper, milk or acid of course.

The run up the Ben was slow for Craig but we passed everyone else so I guess my health is fine. Bandit got accidentally poked in her good eye by me so it’s pretty quiet around here, hence I have time to write.

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