This has been hanging around for a few years (unintentional pun!), waiting for a permanent spot in the garden:
But now that I’ve found the right spot, it’s falling apart, and generally looking a little worse for wear.
Rather than throwing it out and buying a new one (which had been my first inclination), I decided to revamp it.
I lightly sanded the parts made out of bamboo to remove any remaining bits of varnish.
(Varnish is oil-based, and my paint is water-based so it wouldn’t adhere properly if I left the varnish on.)
Then I painted it using the same colours and a similar design to the one I used on the sharks:
The thatching was in worse condition than I thought – most of it crumbled to the touch – so I trimmed it hard, removing anything that doesn’t have much life left in it:
(If you’re wondering how I painted such perfectly round dots, I’ll let you in on my secret – I didn’t.
I dipped the end of a bamboo skewer into paint and pressed it on.)
Anyway, I then gave everything a thick coat of varnish to:
a) prevent any further deterioration to the existing thatching, and
b) to stop the sun from fading the artists acrylic paints that I used
And then I ran out of ideas.
It sat there for a couple of weeks while I stared at it, but nothing was happening in that little brain of mine.
I couldn’t work out how to repair the thatching.
Then yesterday, on our way back from shopping, Alf suggested that we go for lunch at a restaurant called “Le Gout du Large” (translates to “a taste of the ocean”) .
We’d been there before, hadn’t liked the food, and never went back.
But as we’d heard through the grapevine that it had changed hands, we decided to give it another go, as the setting is wonderful.
(As you look at the photos, bear in mind that it’s the middle of winter in Mauritius, and weep!)
It’s right on the beach in Grand Baie – look at the view from our table:
Towards Grand Baie
Looking over at Pointe aux Cannoniers
Almost worth eating mediocre and overpriced food (very expensive), and putting up with mediocre (but pleasant enough) service.
Just not quite worth it.
We won’t bother eating there again, though we’ll stop by on our way home every now and then, to have a drink and look at the view. Why wouldn’t you?
Anyway, why do I ramble so?
We chose to sit at an outdoor table under a thatched umbrella (see, I’m back on track!) and I finally worked out how to finish off my windchime.
I looked up, and voila:
Then I checked out the other umbrellas…
…and looked closely:
I just need to collect sugarcane leaves, buy some nylon mesh, and work out how to put it all together.
But it may be a while until you see Part 2!