Paul was a housepainter... not just an ordinary housepainter.. I looked upon him as a Master housepainter... being of dutch ancestry, he was truly among some of the master painters....
when we moved into Inglewood 9 years ago.. we renovated and knew that we could trust Paul with the painting... you see, he could colour match like no-one else.. and as we uncovered years of vintage paint, we wanted something different for our home.. and so the painting began..
the bathroom was the first room we renovated. I wasn't sure what colour I wanted here so Paul painstakingly mixed up a colour that I thought I would like.. a kind of light cafe au lait.. but to me it was too similar to bare gyprock so I gave up and asked him to paint it cream.. and lived with it for a few years until oneday he was telling me about a new paint called Tuscan affect.. so I chose a colour for the bathroom.. wanting a kind of stone look...it was done within a day and I was hooked... so I scoured the colour charts..
I seriously thought my little sitting room was in need of a revamp.. I had just purchased my snuggly pink chair and some vintage curtains from England and I wanted something really outrageous so I chose 'Raspberry Wine'.. Paul thought I was insane but he painted it anyway.. and he actually liked it when he had finished..hmm what next?
he painted my loungeroom 3 times.. first of all I chose a really dark sea green which he advised me against. of course I didn't listen and he was right.. so we sat and talked it over and decided on a yellow.. tuscan yellow walls with a yellow ceiling rose.. he carefully painted the original 1930's rose with a tiny paintbrush...then we moved onto the bedroom.. which in the beginning was aubergine - way too dark..
I chose a tuscan effect blue this time and decided to stencil a pattern on it myself.. Paul wasn't too keen on this and I don't think he ever did come to like it...
the bedroom ceiling rose was painted a yellow.. this is where his colour mixing knowledge came in.. I knew the exact shade of yellow that I wanted and he would go out to the van, do some tinting, bring it back in, show me.. yes or no? ..back out to the van and so it went on until he got the colour perfect..
during those times that he painted our home, we sat and talked. Paul would arrive around 7am, always dressed in his uniform of white shirt and shorts & paint splattered glasses, he would sit and have a coffee with dutch husband, tell jokes for awhile, then start painting, turning his radio onto talkback and I often heard him commenting out loud to whatever was being discussed by the callers. I didn’t need a clock during the times he was there as he had a routine. 9am and there would be a tap on the window.. time for morning tea.. he would go get his sandwich and come inside for a cup of coffee and a long chat… then painted solidly til lunchtime where we would sit together and have lunch and another chat, sometimes he bought his own lunch, other times I ducked up the shop and bought pies. …. We talked about everything and I dreaded the painting coming to an end because I loved his company… but I needn’t have worried because he called in sometimes for coffee on his way past to a job.
I sure am going to miss him!
the words above are what I am reading at Paul's funeral today... it has been a weird past few months.. going from shock at his first diagnosis, to elation after his operation and then to acceptance of losing him... now we move on..... I have come to a place where acceptance of death is part of my journey.. however hard it is.
and over the past weeks life has been going on as usual at Inglewood... my tamarillos are ripe, the oranges are turning a pale shade from green towards orange, trees have been pruned, garlic planted and turnips are up, my strawbwerry garden is dug, apple trees ordered and I am planning my potato patch ... Fri May 8th was the anniversary of my Dad's death and May 4th the anniversary of my Nans passing...we found out that my next grandchild due in Sept is another little boy.. a brother for Harry and his name is Charlie.... the circle of life......