Do I look bovvered to you?

Well hello!  Greetings from the echoing grove, this place of cobwebs and silence.

Apologies for the even-more-sporadic-than-usual posts (at least I think they are). Thing is, the jolliness quotient has been rather low recently.  Sub-optimal, as Mr Pimperooh would say.  Bottom dwelling, actually. Positively languishing!  And bearing in mind the convention in blogland for upbeat and happy, I have thought to stay mum for the duration.

But recently there’s been a small revolution taking place in these here  bloggity parts – have you come across it?  A group of bloggers have defied the blog(u)topian rule and have been Writing it like it Really Is in a collection of posts under the umbrella title of ‘Things I’m afraid to Tell You’.  Souls have been bared, secrets revealed, the not-so-perfect strewn across the innernets. Exciting and liberating stuff.  I first came across it here.

So somewhat in that vein, and because (like that children’s book, We’re Going on a Bear Hunt) you can’t go over it, you can’t go under it, you’ve got to go through it,  I think I need to get at least some of it off my chest.  Confined to Regency Wreck matters, because – and I’ve already confessed to a certain confessionalism -otherwise we’ll be here all night. And then we can move onto such niceties as taps and basins. And stone floors and copper islands.  And nickel plated baths and tear-drop taps. And, of course,  the conundrum of the ever-rising bathroom waistline.  You thought it was only trousers and hemlines?  No! Not on your nelly.

Anyway,  please avert your eyes if you are  squeamish about the glumps.

So,  we have been troubled in Pimpsville.  Cast down somewhat, and depleted.  Tempers have been frayed. Sleep has been interrupted.   By day we tiptoe through the tulips, hand in hand through shops and showrooms. Baths, lavatories, showers. A thousand dollars here, five thousand there.  And who cares?  It’s only monay!  But by evening the shadows lengthen and at night come tapping on the door of sleep.  Softly, ineluctably.  My dreams are not the des res havens I wish for at the moment.  No white voile curtains billow languorously at their open windows. No rectangles of pale afternoon light spill in, warming floor and feet.  Instead, they are populated by suited thugs demanding money for  umbrella vending machines in the basement of the Regency Wreck.  And by unruly hoards who rush in tsunamis through the front door in search of self-help workshops or wallets to steal.  It doesn’t exactly need my rusty psychoanalytic self  to decipher the lumbering symbolism in all that.

There seems to be a threshold  beyond which floors that collapse and walls that crumble bring with them a wobble of  the confidence. Suddenly there are doubts about the project, questions about its viability. Relationships suffer, finances dwindle, horizons cloud. Survival in one piece seems no longer axiomatic. To be spending like a couple of drunken sailors can be frightening when neither of us is working,  when jobs become scarcer and scarcer and when the world around us seems more tilting and more wobbling by the day.  Everywhere we go we find closing down sales, liquidation stock clearances.  That means bargains of course, but they are bargains resting on the backs of people who are losing their jobs.  Under all their valiant politeness the dark and fearful waters of joblessness sway. You can see it in their eyes, hear it in their voices.  These are hard times and to be so profligate in their midst brings a queasiness, an unease of the soul.

Things have been wobbly in Herbertsville too, with Mr Derring Do himself, HRH Remington Rem the First jumping one too many fences he shouldna, and utterly eradicating his cruciate tendon. He has had a knee re-construction and a spell in hospital (wooing the nurses left and right, natch, for he is a splendoursome thing, ma boy ).  He was discharged on Wednesday, sent home to an ecstatic Elsie (and a moderately happy me) only to be re-admitted  the next day with…ahem…complications of the waterworks.   And so he is back there again, and it is testament to where my head is at that one of the thoughts I had was “oh my gawd, we could fit out a bathroom for the cost of that”.  Though that was, I have to say, a fairly low on the list thought.

Here he is, shaved, sutured, and stapled. Confused and confounded.  And still utterly himself. Because after all, a Remington is a Remington is a Remington.

And that, said Fred, is that.  Enough off the chest. I shall be back forthwith with baths and taps and the like. And a goodly dose of something closely resembling optimism.  Just you wait and see!

18 Responses to “Do I look bovvered to you?”

  1. Suzanne Says:

    Poor darling dog, hope all is ok and on the mend. The dramas at the Big House are all the ghosts of The Rocks rushing in and out wanting to know what it is you are doing here. On closing all I can say is that Queenie did not flinch whilst standing for 3hours in the freezing cold and grey, so stand tall and soldier on.

    • Thanks for the wishes for Remington Suzanne – his mending is slower than expected but we should get him back on Tuesday.

      I’m rather taken with the idea of the ghosts of The Rocks rushing in and out to see what we’re doing – only I do hope they make their minds up soon that we’re trying to do right by the house. Then maybe we can all take tea together instead of these continual dramas. So tiring and stressful!

      And yes, soldiering on, most definitely. Can’t promise not to flinch (haven’t the breeding) but stiff uppers can be managed. In public at least.

  2. I love your blog because so much of what you say is about Your Own Real Life. The photos of the gutted house show how brave you are (just taking our fireplaces out made me go all funny, and a downturn in our luck has resulted in the toddler-stains on the walls of our sitting room still being there 10 years later). The TIATTY blogs I’ve read seem themselves to be photoshopped for acceptability – almost fake confessions – is that as deep as they can go? I hope your confidence recovers soon. I get excited when there’s a new post from you as I know it will inform, engage and amuse me, not to mention inspire me to do scary things where the outcome is not a given.

    • What a lovely message – thank you for your kind words about the blog Ruth. Sometimes I feel as if I’m blathering away to myself, and it’s nice to be reminded that I’m not. And I know what you mean about some of the TIATTY posts, but I did feel great relief when I saw people breaking out of those very restrictive conventions. Me, I’d always prefer to read about real people. And as for the scary things, I’ve always been impelled to hurl myself into the unknown, while Mr P hangs onto my ankles. I’m not convinced it’s actually a great trait (the hurling). Being settled is the grass on the other side of my fence and it sure looks lush! Your toddler stains hint at much – I hope there’s an upturn of your luck waiting in the wings.

  3. penelopebianchi Says:

    Bad stuff is happening here…..there and everywhere. I would spend my last dollar (and I may!) on my dogs……and my cats (no order intended) things are bad….we need to admit it… about “victory gardens”? We in the US (I wasn’t born yet) started growing our own fruits and vegetables……and chickens!

    We have an orchard……I think I can grow tomatoes……we have chickens….(I will not eat the chickens….but when they are not broody we eat their eggs!

    I think this is a good movement!


    • I think we need to admit it too, Penelope. I understand why governments tend to gloss over the fact that things are tough, but I feel that leaves those who are suffering in an eerily false silence.

      Victory Gardens are a wonderful thing – several people around the Regency Wreck’s area have been talking about wanting allotments, and I’m completely sold on the idea (inner city gardens around there are minute). I love reading about your chickens, in fact about all of your fauna friends. And I wish you luck with your tomatoes – I have never succeeded with them, other than a stray plant doing very well right in the middle of our compost heap, fruiting its little head off despite the fact that it’s winter!

      • penelopebianchi Says:

        We, as you know, don’t have winter! I am planting my tomatoes right by the compost heap

        I love recycling; becoming self sufficient; and saving our planet!
        Our fruit trees are bearing fruit; and our chickens are hatching young who will give us eggs!

        My friends Brooke and Steve are building a farm in Ojae!

        They will be “self sufficient”! What a great goal!!

        Best of luck to you…..I swear; there isn’t anything I wouldn’t do to pay for the dogs!! To get better!


      • Oh I know – I’d bet good money on you keeping that vow. No doubts whatsoever.

  4. We can not all live in a lovely world of bloggy lovelyness all the time, it is always refreshing to know that not everyone elses life is perfectly sweet, be great if it was mind you . I hope the corner will be turned at some point, and silver linings will appear Hi Ho. Hope the dog gets better soon bless his wee heart. Should have been a vet.

    • That’s why I think I liked the ‘Things I’m afraid to tell you’ – it was an attempt to break through that sugar coated aspirationalism that affects blogland. And yes, you maybe should have been a vet and then I could have consulted you on Remington!

  5. ohmywordypimps!
    paw paw remington : here in London we were deeply concerned to see the mohican-back-end-shave! we were then immediately relieved by the subsequent shot of him ‘relaxin-by-the-pool’ . well boyz will be boyz, though you must have been very distressed babes. How did you mobilize him towards the vetinarian?
    Ralpfonzo got very excited in the park last week chasing one of those genetically engineered cockadoodoopugaloogos or whateverthey are, jumped over a fence and then couldn’t get back over! i had to lift the little ‘darling’ back over
    well obviously i’m still in traction in hospital waiting for my spine to recover so whilst completely immobilised i thought i’d check out the blog! loving the imagery, clouds of psychological despair mixed with sparks of joy and creativity at the impending re-birth of the wreck Rising like a phoenix from the termite-strewn ashes burning through money faster than Greek pensions


    • If you’re in hospital for much longer I shall have to fly over and visit. Bring you some delicacies from my eating protocol – that would heal you and have you out of there faster than anything else! Fat soup, anyone? Bone broth? Sauerkraut?

      Much snortling here over Ralphonzo’s exploits. Over a fence? And you had to lift him? I don’t know what he must weigh now, but Remmo is about 60kg, which is more than me, so if Ralphy is near to that you’re a stronger person than I am Gunga Din. The Rem is to be incarcerated until Tuesday, clocking up $$$$$s and having uncomfortable procedures for his waterworks. I have to say we’re feeling a leetle dubious about this vetinary system – it seems that once you’re in the loop it’s hard to get out. Exploring dog homeopathy at the mo, about which I hear great things. Hellos and XXs to all three.

      Oh, and far be it for me to give advice, and I don’t know whether you’ve got insurance for R, but I certainly wish we’d taken it out on Rems before he accumulated his long list of exclusions.

  6. I just read that Design Manifest – I naturally assumed that adjacent to every magnificent interior photograph is a pile of detritus conveniently out of shot!
    I do however feel for you regarding the enormity of your regency ruin restoration. You have been incredibly realistic in your description of it from the start…you’ve never been in complete denial.
    Sorry to hear about the pooch…we don’t have veterinary bills…just an unreliable Peugeot with an horrendous loan on it which would’ve covered our bathroom renovation! xx

    • I think there was a moment of true, complete, blind denial which acted as a sort of white-out for quite some time, and that was when I first walked into the RW (after stalking it for months) and was immediately flooded by that thick, sweet sickness of ‘HAVE to have this house’. After that I was on a mission and nothing could deter me. It was a full-on, blinkered obsession and all I could see was how it would look when it was rescued. I know I wax on about such things as termites, but it’s only when that’s translated into spondoolicks that it actually really becomes real.

      And I do feel for you and Jason (but differently) in relation to the Pug – I don’t know whether it’s like this for you but sometimes it can feel that you’ve embarked on this thing and there comes a point where you just can’t back out and all you can do is keep on with it. My potential bathroom sends your potential bathroom fond commiserations X

  7. You have generous hearts that support two big hounds. Do we need to dog sit for you? There is something about a family animal that requires us to do all we can to establish its well being. I hope Remington’s health is restored very soon and life is not a big puddle. Recognising a dogs dignity in such matters is essential.

    If it’s still there you could try the Vet Hospital at Sydney University. You still pay but not the rates you might be experiencing at present but lets hope Rem’s latest visit is a complete success.

    Maybe its winter, but I feel the doom and gloom. Outside of the house it’s mainly in the retail sector with more shops closing and the endless appearance of the Pop-Up shops in our area to fill the blanks that are left by the departing retail shops. We are fast becoming a centre for Ugh Boots. What does that say about us? Even the Pop-Up shops usually run by young folk that put a brave front to the world look very shaky and make you think that the young hearts are being exploited for their naiveté.

    We also feel in a pickle but try not to allocate blame for our situation as we have over-reached ourselves but know the only way to go is forward and not look back. “Stick together” has become our motto. Having been in business for over twenty four years and every year not really knowing if we are going to survive – doubt has been a constant companion.

    What we have is a whole suburb undergoing change and we hope that as lots of us are in this at the same time that we support each other as best we can.

    Your blog is an inspiration and comfort to us. We love your writing which turns adversity into art for us.

    Cheers M+J

    • Actually I think it is you two who have generous hearts. You’ve been very supportive of us and I hope we can be of you when your plans come back and work starts in earnest. And you’re also very good at gathering people around you in a lovely loose connective way, which I think is such a constructive thing in our burgeoning community. It’s something I’m particularly glad of, being such an anti-social troll and all.

      We’ll bear the Vet Hospital in mind – thank you. Remmo is to be held in further captivity until Tuesday while they catheterise him (poor old boy, but less humiliating than the other option. What you say about dignity is so right). I’m breaking him out of there come what may on Tuesday and if he’s still not fixed, we’ll look for home options.

  8. I am so glad to have found your blog and I thoroughly enjoy reading about your RW and your dogs. Good luck to Remington and I hope he is in working order soon and back home in your loving arms..what sweet people you are. We are animal lovers here and are married to the life of horses, mucking stalls, cats that can’t stand each other and an adopted Shih Tzu who is getting very spoiled and emotional. What stories they tell! Best of luck to you these days and in all your ventures.

    • Hello and welcome. Thank you for your wishes for Remi – he’s back home and doing very well. Just can’t understand why he has to go everywhere on his lead. These adopted dogs – don’t they so often hit the jackpot second time around? Just as well too. I’ll be around to have a look at your blog tomorrow (it’s gone midnight here and my eyes are refusing to oblige me for one more minute).

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