It’s happened. We are in our new wee house and it’s remarkable. All the time, effort, tears, sweat, learning and adventures have come together at last. We have moved our cat and a few essential essentials out of the treehouse which has been our home for over five years. With luck and persuasion and maybe a little bribery it is my intension to transform the treehouse into my own sexy man cave in the trees. Jayne may have other less perfect ideas.
There are a few endless last minute jobs which will extend that last minute for a number more weeks but we (she) is beyond ready to move in. We have moved in.
Things are different. We now , eventually, have a massive four poster bed with stunning views of the tree filled jungle and a have the added attraction of a mattress like I have never known. It envelops us in soft delicious comfort cuddles and makes the prospect of moving much less likely. It is often impossible to tell if Jayne is even in the bed. This is entirely different from my usual reality which is being shoved and battered all night by a wall of cold arse.
Guillotine Bed To keep an eye on me Before the bed His Hers Watching birds from bed
The shower is extraordinary. The purple tadelakt finish is cold and stone like and quite beautiful. There are two nozzly bits where a forceful stream of warm water appears at speed getting into all the nooks and even the crannies. I have never been less mucky for longer.
We have a fridge freezer that is big enough to be useful and a new posh oven stove that not only works but lights itself. No need for lighters and damp matches. The kitchen is functional and clean and pretty. Amazingly we can now drink water and brush our teeth with our tap water. An involved UV filtration system removes all the froggy and grotty bits and delivers pure stuff we can use. All in all, after the treehouse, it’s a lot like living in a boutique jungle themed hotel.
It’s all rather pleasant but certainly different. We lucked out when the stars aligned and this bizarre and unlikely project became possible. It’s taken a few years from when we produced some sketchy plans on the back of envelopes. Our crew started in July last year and after a frustrating but exciting nine months of gestation period, here we are. We have zero plans to be anywhere else for a good while.
Our stock of life’s absolute necessities is not in bad shape. We have had many mules deliver large amounts of good cheese, marmite and Yorkshire gold tea. We haven’t, however, any breakfast beans.
Now Mexico is, if course, a world leader in the production and consumption of beans. Sadly, British breakfast beans are not a thing here. Jayne is motivated by the challenge and after much research and a few beany experiments she manages to reverse engineer the contents of a can of Heinz baked beans. They are perfectly excellent with eggs and sausages and bacon. Large bubbling pots of the “nearly the same” beans are created and frozen. We are much comforted as our essentials are restored.
“Nearly the same” Beans
Jake and Luca have moved to a quite stunning retreat center in town where they are making themselves useful and are rewarded by living their best life. Lucky buggers.
Our ability to use all our vehicles here did not last long. Before he left us for the frozen North, our savior mechanic gave everything a good look over and made educated guesses which bits would fail next. We are handed a list of parts we need to find and start the process of recruiting mules.
Within a few days of his departure, spookily, all his prediction come to pass. On the way back from town the front wheel on the Razor decides to part company. It is clear that the large bag of bearings and shafts and bushings will all be needed.
Over the past (and coming) weeks we have had (and will have) many friends travelling down to spending time here. It’s high season and the weather is perfect. That works out well for us. Parts start arriving on various flights from many places and are, thankfully, fairly unmolested by customs. By exploiting as many mechanical skills as we can discover and pulling in all the favours we, somehow, are able to re-press all the balls and bearings and replace the shafts. Huge communal effort. We are back to three vehicles again, but not for long.
Our friends, inevitably, bring new friends and we now have quite a mob of folk all wanting to get places and either do (or avoid doing) things. It is decided to look at buying a car that is roadworthy and jungle appropriate that we can lend out to our guests and mates to offset the cost.
In no time we get a call from a car auction in Tepic up North. We are persuaded that a little bright green Suzuki 4×4 is just too good a bargain to miss. We take the bait. After a short amount of buggering about finding insurance and going through the Mexi-document dance we now have four vehicles. It’s small and green and Japanese so we call her Edamame.
Edemame making friends
There is pretty much always a good reason to get together. It takes the slimmest of excuses to gather a bunch of folk and end up somewhere unexpected. When this happens there is often a requirement for tequila. It’s cultural. We are blessed with having the town of Tequila within travelling distance so there is very often someone visiting and prepared to stock up and deliver direct from source to us. We are fortunate enough to have discovered a great opportunity to acquire large amounts of the good stuff at a ridiculously low price. A country singer superstar in the USA sells his own brand mexi-liquor at (we are told) up to 150 bucks a bottle. We now know the producer who sells us gallons of the same stuff for a handful of pesos in handy plastic jugs. San Pancho is now thankfully awash with excellent tequila.
Good friends are celebrating their Wedding Anniversary and have offered to create a South African Braai (BBQ) at our place. They arrive with a bunch of blocks and in no time we have a huge wood pit ready to cook. There is great meat heating , face paints and a penis piñata full of condoms and femidoms. We now have drawers full of both!?!
Termites are greedy little twats. We are discovering our rustic railing around our yoga deck and shower block are delicious. In just a few months, when our attention was distracted, they have chomped the lot. It all needs replacing. The wooden stairs up to the Selva Vista apartment are also making us nervous. Between mold and termites there is the growing sense when you climb those steps that they have a fair chance of giving way at any time causing an irritatingly serious injury. It also needs replacing. Jayne’s brother’s family are on their way down with kids so it’s probably not great thing to roll the dice.
I am carrying a heavy box of stuff up the stairs to the apartment with both hands and leaning on the banister to prevent me falling. It doesn’t quite work like that. My weight shifts a bit as I balance on the banister, when it decides to head jungle wards. Thankfully there is one bolt that holds it to the top of the stairs but the rest gives way, delivering me upside down slowly but unceremoniously to the jungle floor with a box of heavy stuff on top. It hurts a lot and my plight is not helped by Jake seeing the whole thing and finding it just too funny to ignore. The decision is made. This staircase is history.
It takes a few weeks but eventually the old termite bitten stairway is replaced by a new bespoke metal staircase which is expertly welded in place. Looks great.
It is somewhat surprising to know the new highway, over the hill behind us, is open. This is a very good thing. Our fear after listening to them build the bloody thing for three years was that it was going to attract big lumps of antique Mexican trucks that fart along in-between screams of air brakes. Thank the gods that this has not come to pass.
It’s expensive. It costs 12 US dollars to travel a little bit faster from the exit 10 miles north of us to the exit about 20 miles south. We are in the middle so it doesn’t help us at all. 12 US dollars is a lot of money and so it is pretty much empty most of the time. The small number of posh modern quiet cars and buses who can afford it can hardly be heard at all. This is really good news. We were only able to buy this place because the rumours of the highway actually coming through our land put people off. We are proper fortunate it’s worked out not bothering us at all.
kids more kids even more kids Bruv Love Sister with Lolly Luv
My birthday jumps up at me suddenly. Another one. We are again fortunate enough that the Cirque du Soleil project Cirque de los ninos is performing again to celebrate me. Full troupe of well-trained kids and a perfectly receptive audience makes for good circus. Bless them. Fabulous job !
The Coconut Lady Burn crew are all close by and there are a number of keen visitors who have good experience building things to burn in various venues around the planet. It is decided that it’s about time to do something on the beach again. It’s been while since the last one for all the reasons. We are also blessed with two large piles of spare wood bits from all our projects. We can knock out some scorpions out of them.
It doesn’t take too long to create all the bits we need. A dozen baby scorpions that will sit on the back of a mother beast of claw and tail which will carry the Coconut Lady Man on her back. We have also sparked the creative juices of one of the world’s very best kinetic sculptors who we are lucky to have live close to us. He is the brains and the sweat behind the extraordinary fire spurting octopus El Pulpo Mechanico and his newest touch of genius El Pulpo Magnifico. We are all excited to see what he comes up with.
Pulpo Mechanico Our Bodega workshop Tail maker Coconut LadyMan Baby Scorpions
There is a gathering of around eighty people who have turned up to the beach to watch our little group of sculptures light up as the sun goes down. And then it arrives. A real piece of art. A Duane Flatmo original piece. A scorpion made from all the bits we tread on every day. Palm fronds and bits of fallen detritus. It’s ugly as sin and twice as beautiful. It is decided that we can’t bring ourselves to burn it. It follows us home to find a more permanent home in the jungle.
The rest of our collective art is happily put to the flame. It was a splendid night.
Lighting John’s ICU shirt