Yesterday we celebrated our 'month-a-versary'....heralded by snow.
As ever, time plays tricks. In one sense, and probably a positive sign, it seems longer than a month - we've been too busy to feel that the days have dragged and have almost shaken off the mind-trick that we're just having a dusty holiday in someone else's house. In another, with ongoing groundhog telephone calls to the utilities, it's as though we've only just arrived.
The freezing temperatures are bad news as we try to tame the ferocious gas bills - without grates and hoods, we can't toast ourselves around a roaring open fire as Herbert and Annie would have done. That one's definitely on our bucket list - as is enjoying a nice hot bath once we get around to getting a bathroom fitted. But with thick jumpers, hot water bottles and lots of practical work to do, we don't notice the cold too much.
The last month has been filled with questions about the past and our future at Briarcourt; and as we've spent more time here, some of the mysteries have deepened, others have spawned new questions and on a good day we feel like we've found an answer. Some of our highlights so far: battling through the brambles in the garden to find a 'wine bottle' path from the days when the day centre ran their horticulture project, revealing an original hardwood floor, finding clues to an earlier layout to the house, decoding how the boiler actually works (it's not all 'Time Team' stuff!), and being lent some research documents from the Yorkshire Edgar Wood Heritage Group which throw some light....and generate more questions about the social and architectural history of the house.
The ghost that our neighbours tell us makes appearances on the 1st floor hasn't made herself known......... YET!