I've started packing up at the flat and as of yesterday it was in a state of chaos - packed bags of clothes, boxed of books and collapsed empty cardboard boxes everywhere - when I got a text from the letting agents saying was it OK for them to come and take some new pictures of it today. I said yes - as long as it was the afternoon - and spent the morning giving the place a long overdue tidy and a superficial clean (I can't be bothered doing that properly until I do the final big clean now). I must say I do feel much better with it tidy again, but it was achieved by the simple expedient of shoving everything into the tiny utility room. Which meant that I couldn't get to the washing machine.
Never mind, there is a spanking new shiny washing machine freshly installed in the house, and one thing I have really missed these past five years is hanging washing on a proper outside line. I'd also found a hank of washing line (bought years ago to repair the garden chair, aka the crap (sic) bed, but that's another story), so once young Will from the agency had done his snapping I loaded up my rucksack with a load of washing, the line, a tub of Persil and a bag of pegs, and set off for the house.
First I had to work out all the potential settings on the machine, so that I could decide on the one which will be the only one I ever use (not quite true, I do do woollies specially), and they were a trifle too electronic for my taste. Having decided that, I loaded it up, switched it on... and nothing happened. It is plumbed in, isn't it, I mused? But if it is, where is the hiss and rush of water? We'd both assumed that the plumber had plumbed it in along with completing the rest of the kitchen plumbing, but quickly realised that this was based on a rather flimsy foundation - i.e. that he'd pushed it back into place. So Jim discovered that it is possible, just, to pull out and manoeuvre behind the machine in the very narrow corridor of kitchen, confirmed that it had not in fact been plumbed in, and rectified the situation.
So then off it went. We were sitting out in the garden enjoying a cup of tea when it first started to empty, and watched the suds well up through and overflow the drain and run along the side of the kitchen... ok, we thought, there's yet another possible cause of the damp, and Jim put his drain rods on the list of things to bring up from Sussex. He tried sticking his arm down (try stopping him) but couldn't reach anything.
Nonetheless, the machine finished its cycle with a very satisfactory 1600 spin, and I did get to hang the washing on the line - probably just in time for a thunderstorm.
British Grand Prix, Silverstone
2 days ago