After the Flood - Kathleen Jones looks back on a rather soggy year.
|What do you expect if you live in an old water mill?|
|Work in Progress! the green mould marks the water level on the outside wall.|
The little cottage we rely on for part of our livelihood is still drying out - the ceiling beams were sodden and we’ve only just been able to get the place re-wired so that we can put some heating in. But the floors are newly laid and the kitchen on the way to completion.
On the ground floor of the mill itself, there’s still a gaping hole full of rubble, boarded up windows and warped doors, but that is all going to change in the next few weeks.
|Ground floor of the mill - way to go yet. Check the arched windows with the pic below one year ago.|
Upstairs in the workshop (almost three feet deep a year ago) the floor has been repaired, though there’s still a lot of work to do. I live in hope of the damp and the mould being gone and the windows and doors being secured. But at least I’m in my own home, comfortably on the top floor, where I can shut the door on the mess. Hundreds of others are still living in temporary accommodation. I’m one of the lucky ones this Christmas.
|Ground floor windows about to disappear in December 2015, the footbridge in the distance disappeared completely underwater.|
|My son-in-law pitching in|
As you can imagine, it’s been difficult to write, through so much chaos, but I have been writing poetry and have just heard that a small collection of it is to be published next year, though the contract hasn’t been signed yet - fingers crossed!
And I’ve been re-writing my biography of Catherine Cookson - one of the authors featured recently on the BBC's ‘Books that Made Britain’ series - with a view to re-publishing it. The original, published by Times Warner, was blocked by the Cookson Estate who withdrew permission to quote from her novels because they thought the book was too controversial. I’m hoping I can get it back into print next year, so watch this space. Being a natural optimist, I’m looking forward to 2017 as a new beginning and a year of repair and renewal. Though how that will work out with Trump and Brexit, I don’t know. We live in ‘interesting times’!
A Writer's Life' can be found on Facebook and Tweets incognito as @kathyferber
Her website is www.kathleenjones.co.uk