a few days’ hot sun, it really feels like the beginning of summer. the pool pump could go back on today, although really the batteries could have done with another day of charging. walks are rather subdued, and much later. the evening light is very pretty.

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and the flowers are picked out by the low sun.

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we met a very pretty horse, a mare mincing her way delicately up the camino. her rider is the builder I should have had, Antonio. I was too busy restraining Tilda, just in case, to get a good picture, but here they are.

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what a nice thing to do, ride your pretty horse around these beautiful hills. I am quite envious.

back at the house, more stuff has got done. after the trip to Ikea I have the final solution to the upstairs bathroom. a plain glass shelf, and a pretty little mirror to sit on it made safe with a nail in the wall, and the magnifying mirror as well. I am very pleased with this

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I also bought a copy poang chair; it is not so nice as the real thing, but it gives me a home for the thinner kelim, folded double.

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there are three geckos in my bedroom, they hiss and squeak at each other while I am reading at night, and one has lost its tail. I think they hide behind the hanging during the day.

the house is looking much more homely now. I took the big paintings down to give them wires for hanging, and the place looked really bare without them.

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yesterday I painted eighty metre-long pieces of wood for the big sliding shutter … with the wrong stuff – they have come out a disgusting yellow. I have to go and buy a tin of a darker stain and redo them all. this is very annoying. today I made a start on the metal railings on the porch. it was really a bit hot for this job, as I started later, first having hung and framed nine photographs I took of the finca two or three years ago. this took a lot of measuring and spirit level work. the porch is almost over-populated with furniture after the trip to Ikea. I have to get teak oil to protect all this.

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it’s very nice to sit at the table outside for meals. at breakfast there is sunshine, and the rest of the day very welcome shade.