The Sennen Cove Diary

March 1st - Friday

March, does that make this spring? I have no idea. If it is, it was not the most auspicious start. The sun was shining between the big, white fluffy clouds and all that was required to enjoy it was a big pair of heavy boots to stop you being blown away in the vicious breeze.


At various points in the night, I could hear the wind howling in the eaves. I am not sure that we can hear much of the rattling of the scaffolding sheets from our room, but we could be assured they were making their usual din in a westerly topping 60 miles per hour at times.


It was still having a go when I headed for the gymnasium. The sea had joined in the party and was raging out in the bay and throwing itself up the cliffs and over-topping Pedn-men-du. It looked its Sunday best with the sun shining down and highlighting all that churning white water. The contrast against the blue of the sea is stark, almost as much as the seabirds that darted across the dark skies out to the west. If that was rain, I did not get to see any of it, well, not at the times I was out in the morning.


Naturally as night follows day, ABH needs a run around after I returned from my blistering session. We avoided the beach because there was not much of it and what there was kept being washed over by the occasional wave that was pushier that the others. We hacked across the car park, empty but for the work vans by the toilets and a couple of fishermen about their maintenance. We paused on the patch of grass at the end of the car park and let ourselves be slapped around by the wind and refreshed with the spray from airborne waves. Of course, the big, spectacular waves that hit Pedn-men-du with a big explosion of white water waited until we were around the corner and could only see the tops.


I had only momentarily dropped in on the workforce after the gymnasium and it was a hive of industry in there with builders and window installers working in harmonious concert. I checked that the builder was happy with the notion of building the porch, which had been left out on a limb a bit and still needs windows ordered for it, and then left them to it.


Since there appeared to be not a great deal happening in the house, I drove off to get Mother at around the middle of the day. I needed to go into town for some junction boxes and some trunking to keep the fibre protected when the communications company comes next week to move it back to the living room. This will prove a little premature as there is, as yet, no power in there and we will have to run an extension cable. The timing was a best guess and probably could have benefited being a week later. I shall make a note for next time, ahem.


While we were out, I had a message from the Missus requesting fish for tea. We have some still left in the freezer, but I was to get plaice for Mother for a change. I had it in mind that Mother preferred it filleted but, of course, Mother prefers it whole. On top of this, I was also unable to get the squid that the Missus wanted – the Missus hates fish; seafood is different, apparently. They did have some St Ives Smokehouse mackerel, which I found I had sufficient funds for – lucky me. It is not a good look arriving home with all the things that I wanted and none of the ones Mother and the Missus wanted. It was almost like I had done it on purpose. I made a note for next time.


The weather had worsened during the day, as if the high winds were not enough. The showers became more frequent and heavier and a good deal more wintry. (Mr Microsoft wants me to use the word wintrier. It is a proper word but looks like I made it up.) We were hailed upon in the truck outside the electrical contractor’s and again outside our favourite Penzance fish supplier.


I had it in mind to take ABH down to the beach again in the afternoon after we came back. I left it while I had a cup of tea and she settled after the excitement of Mother arriving, then booted up and headed out. I knew some showers were on the way but hoped that they were quickly through. The first hit us when we were no more than halfway down the street and precipitated an immediate about turn as the hail came in swift and heavy, with a squally wind behind it. ABH was not to be convinced otherwise and we ran for the comfort of the warm and dry living room in the house with only brief forays out after that.


The Missus went down to the flat in the last knockings of the working day. I had told her that the windows had been finished including the insulation to fill the gaps. The reason we went with the company that we had is they were very professional when they installed the first electric sliding door in The Cove and were this time too. Our big picture window at the front had shrunk a bit but we have French windows either side of it which will be useful in the summer as it can get very warm in the flat. I thought that it all looked marvellous, even if the window frames look a little more chunky – aw, go on then, chunkier - than the previous lot.


The Missus returned looking glum. Her main complaint was that the west facing window at the front corner is frosted when it should be plain. I have no idea how that came about. The other comment was that the French windows are not. They are double openers. There is a different, I am told but she was happy to let that be. The frosted windows were indefensible and had to be changed.


The original plans for the windows were drawn up last year. If they were drawn up last week, I probably would still struggle to remember what was agreed. Last year, not a hope. I certainly did not remember agreeing to frosting glass above my desk nor is there any reference in the quotation, thank heavens. I can vaguely remember researching French windows and I have an inkling that they were thought to be prone to draft issues. I do not remember specifically choosing double openers but it seems to be academic, so I shall not worry too much.


Of course, at the crucial time of trying to call the window company surveyor an hour before close of play on a Friday, the Internet in the house packed up. I restarted it as we now have a key to the router, which is next door, but it came back with insufficient bandwidth for me to make or receive calls. At the same time I had to run ABH out around the block in weather that was wintrier than we had in winter was getting wintrier by the minute. 


When I got back, I just had time to decamp to the flat and make my call from there. I left the frosted glass issue with our man who will sort it out. We have yet to determine if there was any evidence that I had missed it in the documentation, but I have been through the most recent three times and only found measurements. They are a reputable bunch, and I am sure we will work out a satisfactory outcome.


The boys had also cleaned up inside the flat in readiness for the inside finishing stages. How exciting.

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