Busy times…

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!

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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!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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So in my next update I should be moved in! I have been waiting a long time for this.