Learning to fly… from the roof of a house!! (Mum, skip this entry!)
Kangaroo Valley Travel Blog› entry 35 of 78 › view all entries
Amongst many jobs, I was asked to help out with painting the front elevation of the family house. The idea was to climb on the roof of the veranda made of corrugated steel and plastic sections, and stand on a plank of wood to evenly distribute my weight, whilst painting away. I was getting on great, given the extensive training gained painting the home of the old Croatian dragon. All of a sudden I heard RM shout my name from the ground below. At that point I was crouching down to paint the very first cladding and the board I was standing on was bridging over a section of clear plastic panel. David had warned me not to walk on that section because it wasn’t strong enough, but as I turned around to find out what RM wanted, I shifted my left foot off the board and straight on to the plastic. Oh dear… it was all so quick! I can remember feeling the plastic crack under the pressure of my foot and my entire body follow through the small opening like a sack of potatoes.
Rose insisted I drank a shot of strong stuff to calm down, then I got back up on the roof and finished the job.
The most laborious job I got involved with was to help David put up two solar panels for supplying hot water and save some electricity. We built a frame from aluminium angle and fixed it to the roof of the veranda, after mending the great big hole I made when I fell through! It was a complicated frame to create because the panels needed to be angled in two planes, enough head scratching to give anyone a bald patch! We were both very pleased with the results, as you can see from the photos, but I am yet to find out if the system works because I left the day after we finished the installation.
Solar technology is great! The sun gives you electricity and hot water, and if you combine this with a decent wood burner for cooking and heating, and rain water harvesting for your water supply, your house is pretty much self-sufficient. Ok the panels might cost you a small fortune to buy up front, but for the rest of your life you won’t have to pay gas and electricity bills! This is all very interesting to me because I’m planning to build my own house one day, so every farm I visit I try to find out as much I can about the systems installed.
Anyway, my time in