A different beginning

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The start of this week has been very different from my usual schedule. The weather changed for the better and at the end of last week I decided to get on with the patio flowerbed project whilst it remained fine and sunny. The work started on Saturday as my recent post showed and Sunday was a day of rest. So on Monday I had the opportunity to continue with the work for I had no electrical work scheduled. Again I emptied out the van and drove off early in the morning to the builder’s merchant to purchase more sand and cement. I had laid some concrete over the drain pipes on Saturday but I needed to lay some more in order to increase the slope of the concrete toward the drain outlet boxes. So my first task was to do that and then begin to build the brick wall. Patio Flowerbed 5The first course had been laid on Saturday to allow me to lay the concrete inside. I built a further three courses of the double-brick wall not being too fussy about the inside course as it will not be seen. I am using the misshapen and poorer quality bricks for the inner course but will still have to fill in all the gaps before filling the bed with soil. Three courses doesn’t sound much but there were 78 bricks in those double courses. I worked at a slower pace on Monday but was just as tired when I had finished for the day as I had been on Saturday! At the time of writing there are three more courses to lay making seven in all. I should be able to lay them in less time as I won’t have other work to do beforehand. I intend to cap the wall with natural stone in the same way the other walls on the patio are capped. The picture shows this. Much of the work involved is preparation, mixing the mortar and cement, cleaning up and hosing down afterwards. Bricklayers have labourers to do that work but I have to do it myself. E does help where she can and it is appreciated but in reality she is limited to what she is able to do. Nevertheless any help is better than none. The wall should be finished on Tuesday except for the capping stones which I have yet to purchase. That stone can be laid at any time and will not hinder filling the flowerbed ready for planting once the mortar is fully set.

Shirley Anne

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