Tuesday, January 06, 2009

the construction zone

Fernando arrived at 8 o'clock this morning to begin the repairing and painting of the house. He lugged along all the tools (las herramientas) of his trade, including ladders, trowels, mallets to tap-tap-tap on all the walls to find the hollow sections that have to be torn out and re-cemented, and the big sifting screen he uses when mixing up the cement. He set right to work on the 3rd floor. I could hear chunks of old wall fall on the floor. Pretty soon he came downstairs carrying a five gallon bucket full of debris which he emptied in the our vacant lot next door. Then back up for more. And back down again. And so on . . .

By the time he left for desayuno at 10 AM, this is what had befallen the wall. The original brick work and the rebar are now exposed. He'll layer in two or three coats of cement, let it dry, then paint it over with something called sellador that helps keep the moisture and salt out of the structure. But as we say here at the beach, rust and damp never sleep. He returned at 11 and did it all over again. By noon, his mozo had not shown up to help so he pitched it in. It's too time-consuming and difficult for one person to do this work. And besides, today is the last official day of the Christmas holiday and he wanted to be at home with his family. Tres Reyes is the traditional gift giving-opening day for Mexican families who then sit down to a festive meal. But he'll be back tomorrow, I hope with a mozo or else this project is going to take a very long time.

14 days until 1/20/2009: End of an Error


At 8:37 AM, Blogger mary ann said...

Please remember that I'm allergic to ladders!


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