So after week 1 post fire (which could only be described as surreal), then week 2 post fire which was really a low point , week 3 starting slowly looking up and I have just come out of week 4. And I guess it is a milestone that I can now look into a devastated room without bursting into tears. I have even grown accustomed somewhat to the post burn smell which many claim will never go away.
But let's go back to this time last week - this post might go on. But it is part of my therapy you see - so just deal with it!
Let's look at the ballroom, one of the grandest rooms in the house - this was it 5 months ago. Its redeeming features were high ceilings, and the most spectacular white marble fireplace.
Well just look a month ago. The floors had the previous week finished being polished.
On that Monday afternoon, I was just so excited with the transformation. I did have my detractors who did not like the idea of a raspberry red fireplace (I justified it by calling it a 2013 version of heritage red!). But I was in love with the colour.
Swatches had been collected, every variation in the shade of raspberry was critically examined. Paint shops were scoured.
A panel of experts was assembled - Some (as seen by their expressions) loved the whole idea (thanks Forever Friend HH and Miss HH!)
For others, like Carpenter HH, the whole prospect of a raspberry fireplace did nothing to thrill! Even when I stuck the magnificent swatch right in front of his nose! He continued with his work. You will be pleased to learn he does not react the same if I put cake there!
But even the detractors (you know who you are!) admitted to just a tang of "maybe it is not that bad after all" when they saw the final product emerging - well OK, we did have to get rid of the yellow wallpaper to really win their hearts and minds.
But when my Super Wallpaper Hanging Man did cover that old yellow paper with the glamour of wide silver stripes and hung the final roll on the morning of 18 March, the vision was complete. How spectacular is this!
The adjoining dining room was similarly transformed. It boasted these spectacular and original double hung windows and a black marble fireplace to counter the one in the Ballroom. Here was the ugly duckling 5 months ago.
I could not wait to get some furniture into the dining room and Ballroom to make these rooms feel more like the end was finally in sight (and that word "end" has a literal meaning as I pen this). Little did I know their end was very much in sight.
Note the roses. My birthday was a couple of days later and that evening was the only night of the week we would all be together to celebrate so Husband HH bought me flowers which I promptly put out. They were on that table the night of the fire and remained there. The rooms looked just so perfect as I locked up for the night. I was so proud of what they had become.
As part of the birthday week celebrations, we headed to Cru Bar to celebrate the birthday which was (that of PA HH) and the birthday to come (mine). And before you may ask, of course there was champagne!
Heavens knows how much I needed it because, within 2 hours of arriving home, tragedy was to strike the baby which I had left so joyous earlier that evening. And what a long night it was to become...
(to be continued)