Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Tuesday 26th July 11

A busy day, got a fair amount done.  I got up fairly early and managed to get my head around the difficult email.... a compromise, I sent a simple message with hardly any detail, saying that if it was OK, I wouldn't need to send a more detailed one.

I then had a phone conversation with a Council person, re a grant I applied for to put on an energy saving event.  With my York in Transition hat on, I've been given £500 to spend on a one-day event to promote energy efficiency and domestic renewables.  I agreed to go to the Council Offices to sign the paperwork at midday.  I got wrapped up in the washing machine stuff with Gill, and then realised, at 11.43, hat I had to be at the office at 12... so i quickly got washed and dressed and on my bike and powered down to St Leonard's, getting there at 12.02. Not bad!  However, In waited another 10 minutes for the Council official to appear... so I needn't have rushed.

So I signed for this and I'll have the cheque in about a month. I need to find a venue and a date and stallholders and do publicity.....

I then went to my building society and withdrew a wad of notes to pay a good proportion of our Council Tax... and went straight back to the Council offices to pay that in.  From here I popped into Millers Yard to say hello to Dylan... and met a new resident of York, a hair-braider called Tamsin.  We talked about street entertainment and red tape.

Then home via Freshways... 2 sacks of compostables here. Came home to find Gill sorting out the conservatory, as she's convinced there's something in there, and it might have been responsible for causing the washing machine to stop working.  I helped her for a while, pulling the washing machine out and taking rubbish to the dustbin and compostables down the garden.

I then spent a bit of time organising my September visit to Basingstoke.  I'm going to travel down to near London on the Thursday and stay with a friend until Saturday, when I'll then travel to Basingstoke and do a Fiddlesticks and John the Composter gig, and come back to York after that.  When talking to the client, I'd found ticket prices which added up to about £70 for the three journeys.  However, today, I had a good poke around the East Coast website, and got the three tickets for £58... including one which was advertised at £10 but when I actually bought it, turned out to be just £9. So I was well pleased with that!

Gill couldn't see any nibbling on the electrical flex, and wondered if the damage had been done in the void between the back of the house and a freestanding wall, a gap which I'd boarded up and filled with insulation, and had been invaded by a rat or rats several years ago.  But she had a brainwave.... maybe the problem was the socket box... so she got the extension flex and plugged the washing machine into that, and Voila! It worked!  So as the wash was doing, and we were chatting about our not now needing a new washing machine, I removed the wooden shuttering and insulation.

Gill rang Justin, our electrical and plumbing angel, and by chance he was doing some tiling just down the road.  He said he'd be with us in an hour to see the problem.  He came, looked around, and said he'd bring a bricklayer to fill the void with bricks, and would see about fixing the electrics... tomorrow!  What service!  He's not cheap, but he is reliable and really nice!

I then spent ages on the phone trying to get to the Tax Credits renewal people.  I eventually got to them and told them our net earned income... which last year was the lowest ever for Professor Fiddlesticks.  The problem is partly that I still have the expensive directory advertising which now isn't bringing in as much work. 

So after this mainly sedentary day, I spent a bit of time in the garden and dealt with some compost and some weeding.

I had a small tea and at 7.30, set out for the Green Party fundraiser at City Screen.  This was very enjoyable, as loads of my friends were there. One person was there whom I've been playing Scrabble on facebook with for ages, but never met.  So I was very happy to meet Carol, who was sitting with her two friends and my friends Jane and David.  When the music started, Jane and David had a dance and some others joined in.  I particularly enjoyed the band 'BlueSaloon' which played funky blues numbers, and had a female guest singer for a couple of numbers, which was good.  My fiend Keith Jackman was the drummer for both bands.  I was very pleased to see him working... well, mainly hear him as where I was sitting I couldn't see him very well.

So, some nice music, good chats, a couple of pints of sweet cider, and I enjoyed the evening quite a bit.

Got home between 11.30 and midnight, lit the stove to get washing up water and continue drying off the fruit leather.  A late night, 3am bedtime.

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