In the light of the somewhat extreme condensation in Chertsey's cabin, I decided that sleeping without the stove lit was not an option, no matter how mild the night - especially as mild nights are usually accompanied by damp, if not downright wet, weather. Yesterday started dry and bright, with a stiff breeze, so I got the mattress out on the cabin top, attached to various anchors at a number of points, to give it a good airing.
Meanwhile I got down to giving the cabin its first really good clean since Torksey, blacked the cold stove, washed down the paraffin-sooted walls, shook out the rugs, swept the floor, cleaned all the bowls, buckets and bins, and removed the supply of firelighting rags which were imbuing the place with rather too distinctive an odour of diesel and white spirit. Just the brass left to do. Then, yesterday afternoon I lit the stove, and have managed, so far, to keep it ticking over very slowly since. So slowly that the cabin did not get unpleasantly hot last night, but just warm and dry. Long may I manage to maintain this feat! The cabin is certainly a much more pleasant place to be now, day or night.
In a disgusting orgy of domesticity, I have spent today knitting - I started an Aran jumper for number 2 son just prior to Christmas 2010, aiming to have it finished for his birthday in February. After a number of setbacks and discouragements, culminating in unravelling it and starting again, having concluded that it was going to come out too small, I started again at the beginning of this winter. One and a bit sleeves are complete, and tonight I finished the back, so getting it to him for his birthday this year is looking a distinct possibility. Meanwhile Jim has been baking bread, now that we have a lovely little freezer to keep it in... No more medium sliced for us now!