Saturday, February 09, 2008

dinner at Aline and Franz's

At one of the prettiest new houses on the beach we, along with about 20 other guests, enjoyed a really lovely party. It seems that as we get older our gatherings with friends get better. Nobody gets (too) tipsy, nobody jumps in the pool or creates a spectacle. The evening was warm and mild, the food was delicious, conversation lively, laughter plentiful, and fellowship the best. We finally got home at midnight which, for us early-to-bed types bespeaks of having a fine time.

Up early this morning to inspect the extent of yesterday's house progress. The third floor is finished ~ grouted, polished and ready for action.
First party will be on the Ides of March, Saturday the 15th. If you're in town, drop by. About 7 PM for puesta del sol followed by dinner and dancing.

My kitchen now has two new windows to let in more light and let out cooking heat. This is how it looked before the wrecking crew arrived on Thursday.

This is how it looked stripped of its tiles.

And here it is with the new windows. They open onto the stairwell that goes up to the party platform. There are no serious design flaws in this house; Roy was very careful and did a superb job of capturing the very best of the location. But the kitchen is hot and a bit airless, despite having windows on the south and north sides. What it needed was some sort of pass-thru capability so that the breezes that come into the living room off the sea get pulled into and out of the kitchen to keep things comfortable. Now we have that; these two little windows will help draw those breezes up and out.

The reason they are so high is that Jaime ran into rebar supports a few inches lower. But since heat rises (Mrs. Nelson, Physics I, would be amazed I still remember that) they should do the trick at that height. Now I have to get Raul, the ventana maker, back to measure and make louvered windows to fit.

The crew also began chipping up the old floor in the livng room and on the balcony. Jaime asked me this morning if I wanted to removar or picar (like he did upstairs) the old tiles. I had originally thought it would all come up, but since he asked me I figured there was a reason. He said he thought it would be better for the floor, keep it mas fuerte except where the old tiles were either broken or had pulled loose from their original cementing. Since I do not make my living laying tiles I deferred to his better judgment. So they are doing a combination of chipping and removing.

Whichever they do, it's nasty work. Even from here, a block away, we could here a reprise of the "Anvil Chorus" until about 1:45, quitting time on Saturday.

Jaime runs a very tight crew. They are expected to clean up behind themselves, and they do. I went over at quitting time. Eight of them were lounging around upstairs while Jaime inspected the work site. He went into the bathroom, checked everything out. Then he went to the kitchen, living room and balcony. Sort of a white-glove test. He will not dismiss the crew until he is satisfied that they have cleaned everything. A nod from him to the assembled men sent them off. He gave me a big smile and said, "Hasta lunes!


At 6:31 AM, Blogger mary ann said...

I can't believe that you will be entertaining on 3/15 ~ this huge project is certainly moving at a fine clip. And I agree w/ you about quiet gatherings with friends ~ special.
Hasta maƱana...


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