Yes, again, I have let the blog slip but the good thing is with this update I have lots to report. Good and bad/frustrating. So where do I start… well I will continue from last time. The garden wall is now finished, which was a lot bigger project than expected but now I have a nice tall garden wall. I have kept a couple areas of open of the original bricks but a lot of it I had to cover up as the wall was in a really bad condition.
I have also started building the room to house my water tanks and pumps, it is half completed but got side-tracked (as always) with other tasks. So one of the next things I really had to sort out was the power. When I bought the house it had no wiring at all but there was a wire coming in the house that ‘borrowed’ power. I do have a generator that I have been using but thought it was about time to get the power officially connected as I want to move in next week.
So simple, went to the electricity company signed a form and they said I would have power in 5 days… ohhh but wait a minute I forgot – doesn’t quite work like that like that here. After 3 weeks and about 8 hours in total spent waiting in the office I finally got the guys out to put my meter up.
So power is connected, I have only connected a few outlets at present but I will connect the others as I progress through the house. Next on the list for this very frustrating month was front of the house. Now I have purposely left the front so it looks run down so no one thinks there is anything worth stealing inside. However, there is a permit issue with doing this… I have all the permits to renovate the house but I found out that you are not allowed to use the sidewalk without getting a permit.
I thought that I was finished with all this permit b*****t but yet again I found myself in Ayuntamiento. Simple they said… write a letter requesting use of the sidewalk and you will get permission in two days… so yes a week later I had no permits – then after calling about 4 different departments (none that know what the official process is) I get told that I need to pay for the permit which is 15000 pesos!
So I decided to do what everyone else does and just work on a Sunday without permits. I did get a bit of hassle from the police on the Sunday that said you are not allowed to work on Sundays… (again – haven’t a clue). I decided in the end however to bite the bullet and do it the proper way as it is a big job to do the front of the property and if I just do it on Sundays it’s going to take me a long time!
So we managed to get through to someone that knew what they were doing and got the permits for 6000 pesos – better than 15k but still a lot. So the last few days I have been working on the front of the house and I have to say it’s going to look awesome. A few more days and it will be finished – then all I have to do is decide what colour to paint it.
We have had a lot of rain the last few weeks and I finally decided to connect up the rainwater overflow pipe to the street. I have been putting it off as it means digging up the sidewalk to put the pipe in (which requires another permit) – its good as we had so much rain the other night that my infiltration pit filled up – overflow does its job perfectly.
Another thing that I haven’t mentioned was about the roof. Over the last couple months’ cracks have started appearing in the roof. I have been told that this is due to the wooden roof beams drying out and contracting.
I was told it will stop in time when it settles – however it has been a couple of months and I have spent hundreds of dollars trying fixes but in the end I decided to felt the roof. I want to start painting soon inside and I can’t have the roof leaking when I am decorating. So I had to felt the roof to make the building watertight – a big dent in the budget but if it kept on going with the amount of rain we have been having it would have started to damage the walls and floors.
Now to the exciting part – my apartment. I will be moving in next week – I have been painting beams and rooms all week and I have to say the place is starting to look great – all I have to do is finish our bathroom and we will be able to move in.
So in my next update I should be moved in! I have been waiting a long time for this.