While I’ve been playing with bits and bobs, Mick has been a little more productive.
We moved into our house 13 years ago on the June long weekend. She is now starting to need a little maintenance. One of the main jobs required was to replace the verandah rails. They have been rotting out at the bottom, and when your verandah is about six foot off the ground and you have a little dog who is completely blind, it is not good to have gaping holes in the railings. However, we knew it would be a huge job and quite expensive. The decision had to be made as to whether we replace the rails with wood again, or go for steel.
Finally, after doing some shopping around, we have decided to go with steel. Our house is clad in corrugated iron, so it suits it quite well.
So, last week, as Mick had the week off work, in the cold and the wet he replaced the rails.
Here is a before and after.
We’re really happy with the way they turned out. The new rails actually, look less obstructive than the timber rails. We aren’t going to paint them either, as they go quite well with the French blue of the posts. The posts will be painted once the weather warms up again – try about October.
Now that the rails are all done and we hopefully will have a few more weekends at home over the winter, Mick needed a new project. At lunch time today he announced that he needed me to help move “Marilyn” into his workshop side of the shed. You could have knocked me down with a feather!!! This is a project that I never thought would happen and I’m absolutely thrilled that it will.
You see, a few of our mates are getting old 1970’s bikes to do up. Some are being turned into cafe racers. Mick has been encouraged to get one as well, but he hasn’t been all that keen. This project is much better. “Marilyn” and Mick go way back – well before I came on the scene. “Marilyn” is Mick’s original cafe racer bike that he has owned since 1979. Why “Marilyn”? Because she had great legs, of course!!
Doesn’t he look so young in this photo. “Marilyn” is a Rickman Honda, which was quite a special bike to own back then. Mind you, she is still quite a special bike to own. Although she was designed as a street bike, Mick used her for touring as much as anything. Nearly all of the photos show her loaded to the hilt to go travelling, or camping at the top of Mount Panorama for the Easter Bike Races.
Unfortunately, a couple of years after he bought her, while she was parked out the front of his Mum’s house, someone crashed into her and she was written off. Mick was able to buy the wreck back and rebuild her. The only fibreglass parts he could get at the time were orange, rather than the original yellowy lime green. Instead of the single bucket seat, she now has a dual seat.
This was the bike Mick rode when I met him. One of the first gifts he gave me was a bike jacket and helmet. Here I am ready to head off for a ride. We went to a few rallies on her and had a great time, however, she started to have some engine problems and Mick bought “Sophia”, his Moto Guzzi. “Marilyn” was wheeled to the back of the shed. He actually advertised her for sale, but fortunately, no one wanted to buy her, for which I was very pleased, as I didn’t want him to sell her.
Move forward 20 years, and she has been wheeled to the front of the shed. She is looking a little (well, quite a lot) sad.
Just the odd cobweb and lots of dust and grime.
Here she is at the end of the afternoon. As Mick put it, “Marilyn in the nude”.
And one happy husband. At least I’ll know where to find him for the next few months.