It's a big day for me and my bus | Rick Jackson

My anorak and I can’t wait for our trip to the MOT centre…

Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 5:02 pm
Updated Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 5:19 pm
EXAM NERVES: Rick Jackson's bus

It’s a big day for me today for m My double decker bus goes for its first test in two years.

She’s been Sorn (Statutory Off Road Notification) since the start of the pandemic and I’ve only been able to drive her in the private yard where she’s kept. It’s not good to leave anything mechanical for too long. Al though it’s exciting, I’m nervous something will go wrong on the way to the MOT centre at Romsey.

She’s needed a new exhaust, suspension airbag , starter motor and work on the brakes, vital for a 10-tonne vehicle carrying 70 people! All being well, she’ll be taxed from June and off I’ll go to vintage rallies across the south... with my best anorak in tow.

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Will the work on my house never end?!

We’ve been in our house eight years now and I’m surprised it’s taken this long for Sarah to want to change the bedroom around.

I mean, it’s the last room in the house to get its second makeover since we’ve been its owners. I wonder if it has ever received such regular attention since being built in 1936?

For me, a freshen-up would consist of a change of colour and maybe a new duvet cover and some matching lampshades. Not for Sarah!

The room has to be totally reconfigured.

Now, this is not an overnight whim, this has been months in the planning, with scaled drawings and marks laid on the carpet.

Our bed has moved from its former position to the next wall, meaning it will now face the bay windows instead of being adjacent to them.

I am no longer next to the windows, I’m now by the bedroom door, where, when it is opened at the weekend, the kids see me first and not Sarah. Cunning.

To facilitate this manoeuvre, the old fireplace has been bricked up and the original iron fireplace sold on eBay for £25.

The radiator has now been repositioned again, for the third time, to stand on the chimney breast where the open fire once was.

Wallpaper will now have to be taken off the wall where the bed was and a new pattern will go on the new accent wall. Are you keeping up?

The house has totally changed since we bought it in 2013.

We have changed every room and reconstructed the back of the house with a five-metre extension.

The front garden is devoted to off-road parking, the galley kitchen and lounge were opened up and now form part of a new rear extension and a large garage has been built at the end of our 100ft garden.

Every room has been re-plastered, redecorated and moved around several times. Surely there is nothing left to do to this old house?

I’ve now been informed an architect is drawing up plans to convert the loft into an en suite bedroom.

Will she ever rest?​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Finally saying a fond farewell to nappies, at tender age of 12

Our kids have been so good when it comes to finally saying goodbye to nappies. Freddie has been dry at night for a couple of years and now Holly is also dry, even though she wants to carry on wearing those night-time pull-ups as security.

They do have the odd accident, which is never a problem. They have a protective sheet over their mattress and the bed linen is easily washable.

My mum asked how they were getting on the other day when she revealed I was nine when I stopped wetting the bed. What? No wonder I never wanted to go on school trips. Not to be outdone, mum revealed she was 12 when she finally stopped. We must have had shares in Pampers back in the day.

A message from the editor, Mark Waldron.

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