Yesterday, while finishing off my accounts, I looked up to find a pair of legs dangling outside the window. They were joined by two more. Then two more. Bearing in mind that the legs were, therefore, some thirty feet above garden level, this gave me pause.
I figured at first that they were dangling in an abseiling fashion from the roof. Then I realised that the Fascia Replacers - for it was they - were taking a cigarette break by sitting on the top of the bay window, dangling their legs over the front and gaily spitting into the garden for fun.
And none of these men were Mohawk (or was it the Sioux who made a name for themselves as steel erectors?). One of them sounded East European. He probably came in with the crush when Europe was Enlarged. Indeed, he may have been the crush. One was a well-spoken lad who seemed to have a desperate need to keep using my loo (he always took his boots off). The other was Irish and probably O'Swishity's brother, in which case, he was O'Swishity Two.
At another point in the day, I was looking something up on the Internet, when I glanced out of the window. O'Swishity One was standing on the top of the bay, wrestling with a pair of step-ladders which he then mounted to get up to a difficult bit of the job.
I'm no good with heights. So watching three men up forty foot ladders nudging a huge section of guttering into place was more than my stomach could stand. And they kept laughing every time one of them made a move which might have thrown them all forty feet into the garden.
The fact that they snapped my washing line was a small price to play for such a display of bravado and skill.
By contrast, the Felting Lads were quite boring, laying their tar and felt with little fuss and less noise.
As they'd apparently taken away their tar boiler and rolls of felt, I went to put the wheelie bin back in the garage.
As I lifted the door, I was greeted by the sight of five men hunkered down on upturned recycling boxes and old suitcases, eating take-away McDonald's. Quite, quite surreal.