The Life Of Brian Blog!
I bought Bees Hall in Sheringham in 1996, it was envelopes at dawn! By which I mean I put in a sealed bid. Like most people I’ve experienced exasperation with “doing up” my house, though in my case, I was converting an old church hall to a domestic dwelling with all its attendant council regulations.
Some of the more frustrating tales I’ll tell later, but to start with - an amusing one! A friend’s son needed some work during his summer break from college and I asked if he would paint the outside of the building. Naturally I asked if he had ever painted a building before, he said he hadn’t , so I asked if he was right or left handed, as you do, he said ,”Right,” I said,”Go to the far right end of the building & put the ladder in one arm’s length, from the end and paint to the ladder.
Having done that, move the ladder another arms length and paint to the ladder again.” When he’d done the top part of the wall, I told him to take the ladder away and paint the lower part of the building. The walls are rendered, kicking out about two feet above ground to brick work and I’d left instructions that I didn’t want paint on the brick work.
After twenty minutes I went to check! My painter, when I’d first left him, was a black haired young man, so I was somewhat surprised to find his hair yellow, I forgot to mention I was having the building painted yellow so perhaps I’ve only myself to blame! He also had paint dripping from both elbows. What he’d done was to paint to the ladder with his right hand & instead of moving the ladder he’d swapped the brush to his left hand and painted away from it, realising he could not put the ladder against the wet paint he’d moved the ladder one arms length from the wet paint and painted to the ladder again but promptly forgotten what he’d just done and again swapped the brush to his left hand, leaving a striped effect!
I suggested that the task was beyond him, and, to give him his due he said it was! I said I’d do it myself but would he please go to the builders’ merchant and get some more paint. I’d be out by the time he got back so put the change & the invoice through the letterbox and the paint around the side of the building. Having placed the two 5 litre cans in the boot of his car he set off for Bees Hall. He was driving along and overtook a parked car and had to swerve in suddenly to avoid an oncoming car.
Shortly after this he wondered why there was a yellow line following him down the middle of the road! Realising that the tins must have fallen over, the lids come off & that the paint was dribbling out he pulled into a side road and tried to scoop up the paint with his hands back into the tins! This was not a success! I came home to find the invoice & change covered in yellow paint pushed into the letter box .Two empty tins with a small residue of paint were around the side of the building in a black bin liner. He had then gone home, hands, steering wheel and gear stick covered in paint, and as he started to wash out the paint from the boot with a hosepipe, he fused the electrics!
The next day the car was seen outside his house with the word FREE printed on the windscreen!