Wednesday 29 May 2013


..under the kitchen sink!

Yes, I thought that would get your attention, it certainly got mine when I started removing the existing cabinetry panels and kick boards and was greeted by this bizarre discovery...

"Holy frost bitten fingers Batman!" I know, that was my reaction too!  I did a double take and called out to Kate to come and see what was going on.  Let's take a closer look shall we...

This was an interesting start to the evolution of our kitchen. As time is money I wanted to get some of the kick boards off so that I could pull up the existing vinyl flooring (lino as we commonly call it in Australia), so that my cabinet maker could get straight to work when he arrived. Being a little dubious about why all these leaves were under my kitchen cupboard, I suited up with gloves, dust mask and eye protection and prepared myself to find out exactly what called this little space 'home'. Slightly suspicious that it may have been a nest of some description, I armed myself with a trusty carpenter's hammer and started to drag out the leaves, while Kate stood firmly behind me with a can of 'All insects must die' spray in case we unleashed the insect's version of 'The 300'. We pulled out quite an amount of leaves, as this photo shows (they actually completely filled the box by the end).

About halfway through, we made the discovery...the poor little ex-tenant of it's own little leafy castle, a mummified rat (cue 'dun dun dah music!)

Funnily enough, and on closer inspection, my first thought wasn't "where on earth did this come from?", it was actually a memory flash to one of my favourite Fawlty Towers episodes 'Basil the Rat', where Manuel's pet rat (named Basil after Mr Fawlty) is the subject of a big search within the hotel. But I digress; here is the little fellow I immediately dubbed 'Basil'...

I know, cute little thing ain't he...

I immediately felt sorry for this old chap who had obviously built himself a nice little nest after making his way into the area under the kitchen sink many moons ago, and who had eventually curled up in a ball to die when his time was up. And upon finding him, rather than take the Basil Fawlty approach of

I'll put an ad in the papers: "Wanted, kind home for enormous savage rodent. Answers to the name of Sybil." ...

I instead took him outside with the rest of his belongings, had a quick minutes silence in his memory, then turned back towards the house and set about getting the kitchen ready for it's remodel - not to mention finding out how 'Basil' had made his way into the land of Sunshine and Paint Pots :o)  Note - Sasha was just leaving the house for school and as she closed the door she shouted back, "I have the title of your next blog post, tragedy... under the kitchen sink"  so a huge thanks goes to her for this post inspiration!

As a further digression (or confession), we have been very busy getting a lot of the renovation work done as soon as we arrived back from America, and this came at a cost of how frequently we have been able to post updates on the blog. Our immediate priority was to get the work done before I started studying again. Beginning late May I have recommenced full time postgrad studies in finance, and Kate has taken on the role of Chief Renovator, and hopefully between us we will be able to get more blog posts done more frequently. Coming up next is the actual kitchen remodel, Part I.

Cheers, Col

P.S. A big shout out to the first official follower of our blog 'Brismod' - who has her own renovation blog called 'fun and vjs' - which was (and remains) a source of inspiration and ideas for us while we were planning our upcoming renovation from America. Welcome aboard and thank you !


  1. Ha ha! A pleasure. But that rat business is quite disconcerting. Yikes! Hope you find buried treasure next. xx

    1. We're hoping for buried treasure too - we're 'easing' into landscaping at the moment so who knows?!