We took another three steps forward today. And two steps back, of course. Firstly, our plumber came to resume The Water Challenge. After explaining how he intended to do the job, he instructed Stu to pull up pavers around the back of the house (laid at great expense 3 years ago!). This would allow him to lay the gas pipe. He also asked Stu to make two huge holes in our beautiful stonework (laid 200 years ago!). This would allow access into the house. Ouch to both of these destructive tasks. While Stu got started on these jobs, the plumber connected our new upstairs toilet (yay!) and drilled a hole in the floor to access the first floor bathroom. Then he took off down the driveway, yelling that we should phone him again when we had completed the set tasks. Much to his disappointment we had finished the jobs within an hour. “Sono pronto!” I told him on the phone. Two hours later he was back to install the gas line, then he was gone again yelling that he would return on Wednesday to do the internal work. In the midst of all this activity, I pruned the lilac shrubs in the company of a nice little snake who slid out of the scrub several times. We also had a visit from an artisan who constructs the arched brick ceilings typical of Piemonte known as “voltini”. He was here to quote on a new ceiling for our lounge room. We had originally planned a wooden ceiling but that was before we discovered that some of the old beams in situ were rotten. The voltini man viewed our stock of old bricks and said he would be happy to use them if we were able to chip off the old cement still adhering to many of them. Unfortunately, he also said he needed 800! So I now have a new task which I fear may never end…




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