You're sitting in a room. An interminable meeting. In a foreign language. Your legs have got the twitches from sitting too long. And before you know it, you've committed yourself to 'gabions to support earth mounding along the north wall'.
And then you're living the reality with over a month of cutting wire with 'airplane snips'(!); building wire cages (gabions); lugging them into place; wiring them inside and joining them together with more wire; then filling each with rubble. 72 of these gabions, needing 150 tonnes of fill.
Polystyrene against the wall and a 6 degree 'rake' (angle) to prevent the gabions putting load on the bungalow. Mastic to hold waterproof membrane in place.
Then more deliveries of stone to create the mounding..
Phone call at a funeral while in Exeter to say that polystyrene sheeting has come loose and is blowing all over the nearby fields..
Digger hire for over two weeks..
Then my poor brother-in-law pulls a muscle driving the digger..
And misery for women too. Jill and Judith dressed in rags and scrambling around the mounds like third world landfill children, Judith actually inside a gabion basket to wire it ... and beautifully presented Asian women in sparkling saris and dripping gold drive up, disorientated on their way to a wedding ask 'Is this Goosedale Farm?'
'Can you believe the way the English men treat their wives....'