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What wonderful friends I have. First Friederike helps me banish negative energy, and now Marcia has helped me banish the rotten ceilings, revealing the beautiful beams of the new roof above. Actually, ‘help’ is not quite the right word – once she got that crowbar in her hands, she was a one-woman show of destructive force. My job was to pitch them out the window and stack them up below.

Getting started, showing fine crowbar form

Looks benign from this angle, but the animal scat up there was disgusting.

The finished product; the beams came down easily in this room because they were rotten, but were too heavy for us in the others.

Bath ceiling is particularly pretty as it’s the hipped part.

Above the master, the hall ceiling will remain in order to have a little place for accessing the roof through the window (for repairs).

The nails are so old they’re hand-made, square ones

Caber toss championships

Boards in space!

The landing deck

Neighbour Alberto has kindly offered to take them away and burn them. Only a few boards were salvageable, this pile is all rotten.

Reward time!