Friday, March 31, 2006

Grand Designs

I never did see that Grand Designs programme, so my expectations might be a tad wrong. One of the good things of leaving yer own country and language behind is that yer TV viewing trails off somewhat, other than the odd baffling session watching weird adverts.

I never for one second fancied the idea of actually getting my own hands dirty, and various horror stories show yer why. No bloody way would I want to learn how to plaster or point or whatever other stuff those blokes in hard hats have to do for a living. Nope, my DIY skills are restricted to opening bottles of wine, dead-heading roses and flushing toilets.

Consider the following schedule that we've just signed up for with them Huf Haus people:

April (could slip to May, but I'll leave you lot to adjust the months below if that happens): diggers arrive to convert the virgin alpine meadow (untouched since the last ice-age) into something that looks more like the Battle of the Somme. Largest crater is to accomodate house and cellar, smaller crater to accomodate foundation for the car port. Smallest crater is to accomodate the machine gun nest from where the site manager ensure that no tea-drinking goes on.

Neighbours finally understand the true horror of living next to a construction site. Tough titty.

May: Concrete poured into craters, and left to set. Swiss workers understandably don't drink tea, camp guard smokes cigarette and looks malevolent. Material for keller delivered, keller built into crater, and then when ready, workers kick the dirt and stuff into the gaps around the keller.

June: House and car-port arrives from Germany in big prefabricated lumps. Said lumps are assembled in a couple of weeks, by yet more workers who refuse to drink tea. German workers these, white gloves and clean boiler suits, so no need to train a machine gun over them. Camp guard looks disappointed. Roof shoved on the top.

July: House sealed from the weather, machine gun unloaded and Swiss workers pause while champagne glasses passed around. Apparently the sealing ceremony is a big thing out here. Expect I'll get a bit p1ssed.

August: Floors and heating system nailed into house. Camp guard departs. Plumbing and bathrooms plumbed and bathed.

September: Electrics and other gizmos put in.

October: Kitchen, painting, minor landscaping, etc.

November: We move in; neighbours sigh with relief, then find out that I'm an Auslander (foreigner). Whoops.

Ahh, the efficiencies of life outside of the UK...

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