I wrote this post at the end of July, talking about how we (mostly I) do jigsaw puzzles on our dining room table each summer, covering them with a thick cloth when we want to eat.
A couple of weeks later I wrote this post, describing the first three which I had completed, and the fourth which was partially done.
Today Daniel and I finished the last of them - a 2000-piece puzzle showing a bit of Venice, which has taken over three weeks. Longer than all the rest put together. We're not even sure why, as it doesn't look particularly difficult. There are a nice variety of shaped pieces, they fit together well, and there's plenty of interest. I even did the sky section first, thinking it would be the most tedious. Then the canal bits, as they were easy to sort out.
But for some reason the left-hand third, with all those buildings, has been extraordinarily tricky. Yesterday there were probably only about 300 pieces remaining to do, but they still weren't going in quickly. So I used my last resort: sorting by approximate shape. That helped, and this morning for about an hour and a half Daniel and I finished it. Phew!
Of course I could simply have abandoned that final puzzle. Either put it back in the box, or left it on the table until next summer. Part of the problem is that I feel in jigsaw-doing-mode during the really hot months, but less so now it's September. As Richard pointed out, jigsaws are supposed to be fun so it was a bit silly for me to be muttering and complaining about the Venice one.
But if I'd put it away, I wouldn't have known if any pieces had got lost. And if we'd left it till next summer, as I did once before with a puzzle that got boring by the end of August, we wouldn't have been able to use the table for anything else (such as table tennis) all year. And as we might be moving before next summer (indeed I hope we will) a mostly-completed puzzle would be very much in the way.