We decided not to celebrate New Year's Eve as we were so tired. However, the next door neighbours are Scottish and so were really living it up. They did quieten down after midnight though, after having given us a fair rendering of Auld Lang Syne. Then, just as we were settling ourselves down to sleep, a strange sound was coming from outside. It was a droning sound. Andrew and I got up and went to the window to investigage and there, underneath the light of the street lamp, was a long bagpiper, dressed up in a kilt too! It was quite amusing and stunned the street into silent. We finally managed to get to sleep at about 2am. So much for the early night!
I finally managed to get Andrew to go up in the loft. I was fed up of tripping over boxes in both the bedroom and the office. I wanted the loft to be boarded and the boxes up there out of the way. We borrowed some step ladders and Andrew pulled up a lamp (fitted with an extension lead) and then pulled me up to survey the view. It was a mess! Daylight could be seen thorugh the slates of the roof and there was a thick layer of dust and dirt everywhere. Bits of broken wood and broken toys lay in the very poorly laid insulation. I could see this was going to be a longer job than I had anticipated.
I had to get my wedding ring made smaller. It was too loose and I was afraid to wear it on its own in case it fell off! It was made two sizes smaller for me.
Andrew got his dad to help in boarding the loft. It took quite a long while to finish, but at least a start was made and that kept me quiet for a bit!
This month we went to Norwich for a wedding, which was as much fun as ours! We also went away with the Teens & Twenties from church. (They still let Andrew go even though he's over 30!)
Our little Datsum car (which we had been given a year before) failed its MOT. It was a shame, but we could hardly complain. This meant we only had a month left to use it and then off to the Scrap yard it must go.
Andrew finished full-time employment at UCCF and started working there on a casual basis. We went out for the day to Stratford-upon-Avon. It was a beautiful day and we ate our packed lunch by the canal. The car finally reached the end and Andrew took it down to the scrap yard. (We saw it back on the road later on in the year.)
As a special treat I decided to take Andrew out for a drawing day. We cycled to Kirby Muxloe Castle and took some paper and pencils with us and drew bits of the castle. It was quite cloudy but I still got a touch of sun burn!
Andrew finally ended his employment at UCCF and was unemployed. It was quite worrying. There had been lots of applications, but very little forthcoming from them. Whatever was going to happen to us? A month or so earlier we'd bought tickets to go and see two opera/operettas at the Haymarket Theatre. That helped to cheer us up somewhat as they were comedies. Then at the very end of June Andrew got an interview at Leicester University Bookshop. We were just about to go on holiday, so Andrew made arrangements to phone up during our holiday to find out if he had got the job or not.
Holiday time! We had been offered a holiday cottage in Wales as a wedding present, but hadn't been able to take up the offer before. It was very near to where we had been on honeymoon and so we got to see a lot of the places again. We borrowed Andrew's parents' car and managed to get all our luggage (for two weeks) plus two bikes in the back of it! It really was a wonderful holiday. During our time in Wales Andrew phoned up the bookshpo and we found out the excellent news that he had a job to go to after we got back from our holiday.
After starting work at LUB, Andrew found out that his weak back wasn't as weak as he thought it was.
This was probably the most expensive month we have had to face. We had a new roof! It was absolutely fantastic to get this done before winter. We had about four buckets and bowls in the loft to catch the drips. What a relief to have a sound roof and guttering. This month we also bought another car. A Ford Fiesta. And I also managed to get Andrew to enrol at College to do a GCSE Computer Studies course.
Of course, this is the month we celebrated our first anniversary. It has been said to us many times that the first year of marriage is the worst. Well, I'll let you know next year if the second year was any better than the first!
We went on the phone. Had a clear out at home. Put some boxes up in the loft. Started College. Went to see Steve Hackett (an ace guitar player) in Nottingham for free. Had long weekend away down south in Eastbourne. We stayed with my aunt, uncle and their family. It was a really relaxing time for us with all that fresh air and sea breezes.
Andrew and I went on a long bike ride on the tandem. We explored the Fosse Way - the bit cars can't go down. It was really nice, but we managed to puncture the front tyre. Fortunately it was a slow puncture and got us back home OK. In fact, we didn't even notice it until the next morning!
We have been very tired this month. Andrew has been doing lots of catching up jobs and finally finished his 'thank you' letters from our wedding! We managed to get out on the tandem again (after Andrew had mended the puncture) and cycled off through Aston Flamville. I cleared the office ofa ll the other boxes (they're now in the bedroom waiting to go up in the loft) and I've finally got some paint out of Andrew. Maybe we'll even do a bit of decorating. One can live in hope!
Copyright © 2000 Lez Bullwer