Well! What a day!
Changeover day with a Visit Britain inspection thrown in for good measure… we have never had that before. In the past, the inspection has taken place mid-week which is rather inconvenient for our guests but generally easier because, when all is said and done, our first priority on a Friday is to have everything ready, sparkling fresh and welcoming for our guests and not to have them arrive while we are showing the inspector around, as happened today. Fortunately, both lots had been before.
We had a very pleasant and extremely thorough inspector (thank goodness for our wonderful Janet and Carol!) who seemed pretty happy with things generally but less impressed with the state of the Tom’s Barn stairs which she felt showed unhappy evidence of the odd sharp-clawed dog scrabbling up them.
We have already arranged with David, our wonderful joiner, who is going to build a wooden gate at the foot of the stairs and do what he can to iron out the worst of the gouges. The other thing we have to do, which we had already planned anyway, is to replace the easy chair and footstool in Tom’s Barn, which although actually spotlessly clean, no longer looks so.
Douglas’s Barn appeared to pass muster without comment (hope I’m not deluded). What we were hoping for, after all our refurbishments in Tom’s Barn, was for Tom’s Barn to go up that one vital point (from 91% overall to 92% ) to join Douglas’s Barn in the exclusive Gold Star ‘club’. Last year we were told the only thing between us and a Gold Star was the cooker, and that has been replaced with one that is very definitely not old fashioned…
So all we can do now is sit and wait (and start looking for that new chair).