Almost Possibly Maybe
After a good feed we and most of San Pancho spend new year’s eve at our friends beach bar with the lovely ladies from the world famous Freakbaby DJ’ing us through the night. We and our many guests are blessed to be part of our funky and fabulous community here. It’s going to be a good year.
There are way too many people asking us (completely reasonably) when we are moving into the Scorpion Temple, our new house. We are close. The massively intimidating list of things to do is now a little shorter. There is a strategy to deal with everything except the unexpected.
One major project is the making of our bed. We have designed a solid Amapa four poster with some sexy features. The massive chunks of Amapa have been delivered. After lots of epic joinery magic and a good amount of swearing our wood whisperers create and assemble a uniquely beautiful but extraordinarily heavy bed. When standing on the tapanko platform where the beast will sit it becomes apparent that the floor is not build to take the weight. It is decided that we will not compromise on the bed design and the floor must be strengthened.
We are thankful that it appears that the problem is resolvable by the addition of a 13 foot long 6 x 6 viga (structural wood beam) carefully squeezed underneath the existing structure and held in place by custom heavy duty metal brackets secured to the concrete support beams. The fun bit is that both the supports are at opposing eleven degree angles. I apply my limited school boy technical drawing skills to designing the brackets. I am helped by traditional tools. A pencil, rubber, pencil sharpener and a shatterproof ruler. I can’t find a protractor anywhere. This is the antithesis to CAD design.
Somehow after a few false starts we somehow manage to get this done. The beam is found and delivered. It weighs a ton. It has to be sanded, stained and cut to fit the brackets that eventually come in at fourteen degrees. The viga ends are cut at an offset of three degrees to adjust. We manage to man handle the thing onto our light scaffolding. We use muscle and car jacks to raise the beam very slowly towards the roof. The extra height is taken up with random lumps of wood and janky stone blocks. It is obvious to anyone that this is just too dangerous. Drills and bolts and straps are applied. This reduces the chance of death just enough for us to soldier on. Still not sure how but we now have a floor strong enough for us and our bed.
My phone has finally decided that humidity and my grotty pockets are no longer survivable and is expressing its displeasure by sending messages and photographs randomly to the poor buggers on my contact list. It has also decided to rest up every few hours and refuse to work. I have two weeks of juggling two phones and attempting with little success to save photos and contacts and messages from vanishing forever. I am now in the midst of trying to employ my famous patience to tame a new phone. It is not going well. My new phone is somehow becoming more unpredictably confusing by the day. This may take some time.
Even the best of our lovely traditional mexi-mechanics make a quizzical and slightly scared look when we present them with our wee Polari. They won’t touch them. The Polaris Razor hasn’t moved now for nearly a year. The gear cable needed replacing and the six month drawn out process of nagging our third “specialist” mechanic to fix the thing appeared to have created a long list of new issues and we have lost the will to nag further. Our Polaris Ranger is recovering from the last time our fourth “specialist” mechanic fiddled with it. And then our mate Geoff arrives.
Geoff is a handy bugger. He’s a self-taught mechanic living off grid in Northern California and required to work out how to fix endless deteriorating machines on his property. Within days he has cheerfully inflicted his skills on our stubborn fleet. Both our Polari are now running like champions. He just “put them together right” he tells us. Geoff also insists we replace some highly buggered bits on our Toyota to make it safe for the highway. This is helpful. That highway is dangerous enough without us adding any additional peril. First time we have had three vehicles running for an age. Long may that continue. We shall see.
It continues to be part of my daily routine to pick up Jake and head to the gym way too early. By nine in the morning I am already tired, sore, sweaty and stinky. I used to start my day with a bucket of tea and a lovely lie in. Not sure this is an improvement. I may decide to accept a wobblier body and more sleep.
For the third magnificent year we are called to celebrate our lovely friend Emma’s birthday by participating in “EmmaOlympics III: the return of the idiots“. We all gather on the delightfully picturesque north beach in San Pancho to compete. To add to the traditional silliness of welly boot throwing, tug-o-war and the banana buttock, backward three legged, and inserted balloon racing there is some additional events. One requires spoons to be suspended from one’s waist and thrust towards one partner. Every spoon that touches another spoon is a win. The image of dozens of folk thrusting groins towards each other made for some unique and spectacular wedding photographs. Unknown to us (or them) our event was scheduled at the same time as two rather posh and clearly expensive white weddings on the same part of the beach. Wedding guests were partly entertained but mostly bemused at our antics. Despite being nobbled with a banana I am now the prize winning chucker of welly boots. Officially the biggest tosser.
It is hard to fathom that our new house is almost ready maybe. It’s been a remarkable few years of imagination becoming reality. Pretty much everything we thought of when we first considered our designs have not only appeared but have exceeded our expectations. We are incredibly fortunate to have been able to do this. There have been so many decisions and choices to make. It can be said that Jayne and I have very different ways of doing things and at no time have we ever properly agreed on much. Despite the constant collisions of alternative opinions we haven’t been too close to killing each other. This is quite an achievement under the circumstances. So as our new home appears from the future you will forgive us banging on about it for a wee while longer.
Our new toilet area is complete. The parota wood has been buffed to a sheen and our bucket and sawdust installed in a rather pleasing way. We do require a screen of some sort as we have discovered that toileting is not the best of spectator sports for our guests. The tadelakt shower has dried and the effect is a stone-like pale purple sheen. Our dark wood backdoor is complete with locks and cat hole. We drilled various size test holes and inserted Mausetrappe into them until we found one that she could just squeeze through. We don’t want to encourage too much cat nonsense in the new place.
Our open staircase is backlit with LED lights to add a little wow factor and assist with late night stumbles. Under the stairs , however, it creates something of a funky shape. This is taken as something of a challenge. Our woody heroes fashion perfectly shaped drinks cupboards for junk , glasses and booze.
The two arched windows we dragged from Sayulita over a year ago are now looking fresh and proper. Custom made amapa and parota trimmed. They could do with a good clean but, then again, so could I most of the time.
All our cupboards and drawers have had a good rub over with vinegar. This seems to be fending off the effects of the humidity. With luck they will stay mold free.
The desk support is ready and in no time doing its job. The groundhog days of endless polishing, sanding, re-polishing and varnishing a huge slab of sexy wood again and over again are done. It’s turns out to be a pretty fabulous desk. This extraordinary lump of Parota will last a millennium. Jayne will soon move from her four poster office bed in the treehouse to her own bespoke workspace. It will be like having a proper job.
Our bloody earth floor has had its last chance to impress us. It has been impossible to have a floor of earth and poo not create all manner of mold. Some super strength mold killer has been smuggled down to us. After another hand wash with vinegar the new stuff is added to linseed oil and the final final coat brushed on. If we see another new strain of mold appear it has been decided the next coat will be applied with a sledgehammer.
The final scorpion iron mongery has also arrived. Custom made scorpions are built into the banister around the bed and two more will be mounted on the lower panels of the stunning parota front door. We found some small metal scorpions which will be used for operating secret places (if indeed secret places exist).
So it’s now all about our massive heavy bed. The back will be built into the bannisters that will hold our metal scorpions. It’s so close. Some fancy electrics and a strategic window have been built into the headboard. There are a few things to finish before our brand new mattress is dropped in, but not that many. It is a possibility that maybe, one day soon, there is a chance, we might move in. But don’t quote me on that.
The canopy above our treehouse is attracting a variety of birds. They are feasting on the fresh Copomo fruit and dropping nuts loudly on our cars and painfully on our heads. The commotion has attracted forest falcons. Despite their ridiculous call (like “a lady in the throes of orgasm”) they are the biggest predators here and potentially aggressive. We have lost chickens to them previously. Their appearance has coincided with the absence of our second favorite cat. Gargoyle. This wee chap can’t leave food alone and hasn’t been seen or fed for over a week so there is a fair chance we won’t be seeing him again. Bless.
Shockingly our dear friend Sasha has had a bloody awful accident. There a was an unexpected shower of rain that lasted only a few minutes but made the cobbles on a comically steep banked hill (leading to the house he was looking after) extremely slippy. He attempted to make it up to the remote house gate on his motorbike but lost the backend. Somehow he is pinned under his bike unable to move for over five minutes with the hot exhaust pressed into his leg. By some miracle he was seen and rescued but not before his leg was cooked. Along with cracked ribs he has 40 percent third degree burns to his inner thigh. After a great deal of urgent expensive medical attention he has avoided getting the wound infected. He is on a very long and tough road before he can function again. It doesn’t bear thinking about the amount of pain and patience he will need to endure to recover poor bugger. You can throw him a few quid if you are feeling flush here.