Ritya 17

Another cold andrainy day. During the morning we went back into the loft, I laid some insulation down in a side part after first clearing up the rubble, filling sossal holes and then covering with wire mesh. I did this until I ran out of mesh. David busied himself with wiring in two lights in the new loft and two more in the (untouched) main loft. When finished we broke for lunch.

Boiled rice with pasta sauce and peas thrown in. Gloopy and nearly tasty, but filling . What didn’t disappeared inside us, enlarged Banjo.

During the afternoon (horribly dank and cold) it was decided to tackle the pool barn. It had been built by Bulgarians last year and was suffering from a bowed roof and possible collapse in the not too distant future, we had strengthened it with supports during my previous stay (probably why it made it through the winter) and though at the time we had laid the foundations for another supporting pillar we hadn’t the wood available and were concentrating on the pool, David had promised to install it after I had returned to the UK, but failed to do so.

After clearing the gravel, finding suitable flat plotchas (stones) to support the 3 new pillars we jacked up the worst beam to level, using a car jack and a substantial piece of wood. The dip was around 8cm and when we released the pressure the effect on the roof tiles was frightening.

David drove into Dryanovo to get the wood. I took Banjo for a walk and then lay on the bed waiting for his return. He did just as I was dropping off to sleep.

The task seemed easy. Using the chain saw (the Bulgarian way) we cut three plinths and nailed them in position. We then measured and cut the first pillar. However, when it came to jacking up the beam to the required height, it kept failing. We tried: changing the lifting plank, taking the wheels off the jack, supporting the jack on different plotchas and even tree trunks. Nothing would make a stable enough base to get the beam jacked up to a fearsome height. As the light was fading a desperate David dragged the cover off his cess pit and put under the jack. Amazingly it worked first time. I guess if the cover could keep Bulgarian influenced effluence at bay, supporting a mere beam was a ‘a piece of piss’. The effect on the roof was dramatic, everything looked more or less straight and level. Buoyed with our success we set about the next pillar. We got as far as cutting the pillar and placing it underneath the beam when the lack of light defeated us and we returned through the drizzle to a warm cosy house.

That night we ate sausage pasta bake, settled down in front of a warm fire and watched a film.

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