Friday, November 24, 2006

The storm has passed

I'm pretty sure 'storm' isn't the right word, but now the external construction's been completed (in four short days) there's that ringing in my ears that you get after a major storm abates (I've sat through a major hurricane in Fiji, so I know what I'm talking about), or perhaps after a particularly loud rock concert ends (I've sat through a particularly loud The Who concert, so I know what I'm talking about).

Anyways, all's quiet on site.

The Huf Haus external construction people have all gone. No trucks blocking up the cul de sac, the crane's gone, just the distant sound of cows bells... and that ringing noise in my ears. The house is complete, locked up, patiently waiting for the next onslaught.

Ok, enough with the esoteric stuff...

The surroundings of the house look like an excerpt from the 2nd Battle of the Somme. Mud? The word 'mud' doesn't do it justice. The parking area's still a hypothetical set of sticks and strings to show what's what, and where what's what goes. The interior of the house is mainly wet concrete floors, ceilings and partitions divided here and there with sections of under-coated white Huf Haus wood. Any surface that isn't wet concrete or wood is called glass... and that's filthy. The heating unit's still plastic-wrapped, and sat on a pallet in the Keller. All the electrical, heating and water channels are devoid of electric wiring, heating- and water-pipes. The two bathrooms are almost indistinguishable from any other concrete hole, 'cos there're no loos, showers, baths, tiles or sinks in 'em. The kitchen... well, we know where it'll be, but the present reality is a long way short from a place where I can cook up a half-decent curry.

In short, we're still a long way short of actually being able to move in. Our cup is half-empty, goddammit. But then I'm a project manager by trade, and they used to pay me a lot of dosh to view solid progress in this way.

(Don't take me too seriously; I'm chuffed to mint balls, really I am...)

On a competitive note: that Dastardly Bob Salmon's house arrives next week, so one'll be reading his blog with great interest, as should you lot. The link's just to the right of yer screen, so no excuses. Bob reckons he may be able to move in by Christmas. Hah! Well, so he might if he's prepared to nest inside a concrete mixer, armed with k-rations and a hurricane lamp. Not only do I come from less hardy stock, but it gets way too bloody cold during a full-on Alpine winter. Nah, Claudia and I'll wait until we have a functioning house before making the big leap. It's hard enough dealing with two wee toddlers without worrying about them chewing on half-finished cabling.

So, that Dastardly Bob Salmon'll very likely win the Move-In-First battle, and good on him. But I'm smugly confident we'll win the Fit-for-Human-Habitation battle hands down. I learned a few things during my 30 odd years masquerading as a Brit, and many are related to the reliability of British tradesmen. One feels it would be inappropriate and ungracious to spell it out, so let me just say that over-zealous punctuality and unduly close attention to detail are not accusations that could be fairly leveled against the British working man.


Next steps on our own Huf Haus project? The landscaping of the parking area should commence next week. Claudia also suspects a squad of highly efficient interior Huf Haus people will arrive on Monday to commence with the, erm, with the whatever they do next. We'll see.

Other than that, what a week.

Pickies to follow later this evening.

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