In previous posts there have been assorted references to MadAlex, the previous owner of this house. During a recent sort through of house photos we realised that although we’d mentioned the interesting state the house was in when we bought it we’d never actually included any documentary evidence.
So, for your amusement and delight, below are images from the very first time we saw the inside of the house. Think of these as an early holiday gift from us.
Before you peek though, remember, this is the house that MadAlex said would need “a little painting and perhaps some light replastering in one or two places“.
Of course MadAlex is an artist and it is clear that his perception of the world is very different to that of us non-artistic folk.
Open fires are lovely, especially in the cold weather we have up here in the hills.
Sadly this one didn’t draw properly so there was extensive smoke staining on the front of the fireplace … and the wall above … and the ceiling … and in the dining room … and the study.
The builder replaced the chimney to help the airflow and to prevent it setting fire to next door’s pomegranate tree – again. That was one of the first of the stories fellow villagers rushed to tell us when we started work. Apparently it was a talking point around these parts for quite some time.
Returning to soot for a moment. Did you know, if you paint on walls that are sooty the paint just peels off again? So, before you can paint, you have to scrub the walls and ceilings with a solution to neutralise the soot. It is a filthy, tedious, unpleasant and back-breaking job.
Guess how we know?
Fitted kitchens are just so last season, no? Really who needs more than strong coffee and food cooked in a toaster oven anyway?
On the right of the picture are industrial machine tools for cutting and stamping metal. In the kitchen.
Once the existing kitchen units were removed the room was re-wired and re-plumbed, re-floored and re-plastered. One doorway was blocked up and the windows were replaced. The sink was re-located out to the garden.
And, the hole in the wall through from the kitchen to the bathroom to allow the washing machine to drain into the basin was blocked up. Really, why bother with expensive plumbers when you could just use a hammer to knock a hole in a convenient spot and route pipework that way?
Speaking of which … behold the downstairs bathroom. To be clear, at the point at which this photo was taken this was the only working bathroom in the house.
Aren’t those tiles lovely? Sadly many of them fell off the wall when one of the builders sneezed so they all had to be replaced – such a shame.
The bathroom, just off the kitchen, was eventually split into a utility room and a downstairs cloakroom (a half bath to our north American readers). The ceiling was replaced, as was the window. The floor was dug up to allow new pipework to be laid as part of the re-plumbing. The room was re-wired and re-plastered.
It’s interesting how time tends to dull the memory.