Battle Royal!

I honestly don\’t know if I am coming or going! I will be glad when either the work is finished here, or the money has run out and they have to go…

Pépe is getting better, he sleeps in later now, I don\’t have to get up before 6am, he is far more tranquil, and he has stopped biting Marcela, he spends all day, either patrolling the garden, standing at the front fence, watching the horses go by, or talking to his new mates of which there are many., when not doing that, he is scavenging titbits from the workmen, or ripping up cardboard boxes.

I was in Bello for 9am with my trailer, picked up Ruben, and his assistant José, along with the roller door, another reja door, and a window, and returned to the finca, by the time all the work was completed, I was glad to get Ruben away from the place, he nearly caused World War III, criticising the work of John and his men, they in return were criticising the work of Ruben, it was a stand-off. I took Ruben back to his workshop, and we are waiting for a quote, to have a pedestrian door built into the existing sliding gate, whether we can afford it is another thing.

By the time I got back, John was ready to blow a gasket, so I had to spend some diplomatic time with him, and as many of you know, that doesn\’t come easy!

John, had been trying yet again to get Marcela\’s toilet working, without luck, in the end it was decided the toilet itself was faulty, so Marcela was straight on to the shop, it is still in discussion as to who is liable, the shop, or the manufacturer, but as Marcela said our contract is with the shop.
Whilst working on this, John was talking with another neighbour, and there was a blockage  in the waste pipe that takes all the dirty kitchen water into the river, the pipe was not even a pipe but a 3\” hose, and the neighbour had been working on it for hours, even though it is a shared  pipe. I sacrificed 3 bottled of my caustic soda, and these seemed to solve the problem, albeit, when the water level dropped, they found whole potatoes, rice etc. blocking the gully, anyway, problem solved for now, but it didn\’t have anything to do with the  toilet problem.

I went to work with my big SDS drill, breaking up the parking area, where water has washed away the ground underneath, I now need to compact that area. Then I broke up a concrete platform outside on the roadside, the one I ruptured my tyre on the other week, it looks good now, the problem is, that buses now think they can use it as a passing area, I was still stood there, drill in hand when the bus driver swung onto the broken, now crushed concrete, he was so close, I could have whispered in his ear, now he missed my toes I will never know…and it\’s my land!

UNE the Telephone and TV company, finally arrived to connect the TV, and what a mess they made, I had to clean up after them, I was not amused.

Today, I have spent nearly all my time in the workshop, which is just about complete, the window and reja go in tomorrow, and subject to final bits that need finishing, I have to then pay that bill off. I spent my time cabling for electric lights and sockets. I had to get some help pulling the cables through the conduit using a fish tape, the bends were a bit tight, in fact it took four of us to pull all the cables, then joy of joys, I was left to, cut, splice, join and finish.

This morning, we had to make a decision, one of the projects, is to stabilise the land at the rear of the house, this involved digging down to the neighbours land below, building up four pillars, held firmly with a concrete viga/beam, and than backfilled with rubble, and topped with concrete, the problem with that, was that a straight line from one boundary to the other, went through the middle of some sort of pine tree, which was huge, and growing out at 45º from the house, all the locals said it was in no danger of falling, or damaging the house, but you never know.

I was left with two options, one was they went around the tree, which meant pinching a smidgin of the neighbours land, or chopping down the tree, which would then fall onto the neighbours land! time for a conference, and Mauricio, the Mayordomo for the land in question was called, I put the two options to him, he said he would have to ask his boss if we needed any of their land, but he was happy to take the tree, if we chopped it down…decision made. Mauricio lent John an axe, and down came the tree. Now we have more light in the house at the back, and fewer bugs flying around, we suspect there may have been a wasps nest in the tree, because as it came down, John had a horrid sting on his neck, but nothing a bit on my chinese oil didn\’t put right.

Marcela had been out nearly all day, having her hair done for her visa photo…!!!???? has anyone ever seen a half decent passport type photo, I don\’t think I have, but the hair had to be done!

After I ate the late lunch Marcela returned with, I had to shoot off to get some cash to pay wages. On my return, our neighbour Conrado was there looking through the rubbish, apparently all rubbish is a godsend to someone else, the broken tiles, etc. will be collected by someone who wants hardcore for a drive-way, he sent off for Umberto, who arrived to look through the wood pile, he took some, and is returning in the morning for a lot of the rest, I hope he is careful, I got my first rusty nail in my foot yesterday, fortunately I felt it go through my sole, and took the pressure off immediately, it was only a nick, but nurse Marcela gave it a dowsing in rubbing alcohol in case of any nasties!

Tomorrow, no work here for me, weather permitting, I am going to collect my Honda, then after stopping at my Bank to collect the final payment for the workshop, we are going back to the apartment to clean it top to bottom, ready to hand the keys back on Monday.

Published by Phil Sale

I moved to Colombia from Spain in 2012, and I am happily married to a Colombiana.

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