Thursday, October 23, 2003


October 23, 2003

As the work continued today, things got more and more interesting. The trench got deeper and deeper, and eventually went all the way to the front wall. Next they started working on the outside of the house, breaking up the sidewalk, and digging a similar trench which connected with the one from inside. Tonight, I am hoping that no wild creatures seek refuge in our house thru the opening left under the front wall!

The work in the back room, where the laundry and bathroom will be was even more interesting. In order to accommodate the larger shower, the floor was dug out at least an additional two feet deeper. As this work progressed, the pile of rubble in the middle of the kitchen got larger and larger. Later, several other men showed up, and they formed a bucket brigade to haul away the mess. The foreman told us that now there will be two steps instead of one into that area. Art now has plenty of headroom!

Yesterday when we returned home, we weren’t sure if the men had taken a riposa or not. From the looks of it, we didn’t see how they could have taken any time off, much less the standard three hours. Today, we knew for sure. As I posted earlier, the work began this morning at 7:15 am. At nine they took a short break, and then at noon, everyone cleared out for lunch. Then, just one hour later, everyone was back to work! And this was hard work, jack-hammering the floor, shoveling and hauling rock all day. When five o’clock came, most of the men left. We assumed the foreman remained behind to finish up, and that he would leave shortly thereafter. We kept hearing the jack hammer. Then it would stop, and we would think, “Okay, that’s it”, then it would start again. Finally, at 6:30, the foreman knocked on the upstairs door to tell us that they would start a little later tomorrow morning. They are also working on a balcony down the street, and needed to work there first for whatever reason. Whether this long day is typical, we don’t know. Maybe they get paid by the job and want to finish as quickly as possible. Maybe the geometra knows that we have no heat and the temperature is dropping. Whatever the reason, we are glad! After hearing horror stories about workmen who came once, then not again for months, we didn’t know what to expect. So far, we are quite pleased. At least they know how to tear stuff up. Let’s hope they are as good and as quick at putting it all back together again!


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