Friday, 16 October 2009

Woodlice and winter

The day we arrived at the house the temperature dropped from a balmy 15 degrees at night to freezing or below! As we got out of the van the cold took our breath away but before we could make up the bed and huddle together to keep warm we had to clear up the aftermath of a woodlice infestation that seems to have targeted our house and those of our two closest neighbours. As we walked into the house their remains crunched under our feet making it sound like we walking on sea shells. The dead woodlice were an inch thick in places and pretty much everywhere. Their decaying carcasses gave off a smell rather like dried nasal mucous!

Eventually we cleared up a space for the bed and went to sleep, disturbed from time to time by the cold. Despite the thick duvet it really was cold for October! The following morning our macerator got stuck and when Ian went to investigate he found a solid lump of ice holding up proceedings. He also discovered that two metres of our pipe had been chewed up by rats, in an attempt to get at the juicy contents!

The following day we got ourselves organised. The fan heater worked well in keeping the temperature bearable and I cleaned up the kitchen and bathroom area so at least they were woodlice free. Our temporary electric supply means that if we run the water heater and the fan heater we can’t run anything else so we had to prioritise the equipment that we needed. The other problem is that by the time the electricity reaches the house down the 150 metre cable the voltage drops from 240 to about 190 which means that everything runs very slowly!

As I write this the temperature is rising. The builder’s father-in=law arrived yesterday and said that the moon changes this weekend and that means the weather will change. The forecast suggests it is getting warmer!

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