Well, my first post in 2007, so I wish you and your loved ones a Happy New Year.
Apart from the odd curiosity trip to show off the house to family and friends (I've got a key, dontcha know) not much happened over the Christmas and New Year period that you don't already know about. The Huf Haus people's two week vacation shut-down ended last Monday 8th, so we'd hoped that a hoard of super-efficient German workers would descend on us this week, and progress commence.
However, it hasn't worked out that way.
The heating didn't go on until earlier this week, so the arrival of the Huf Haus people is delayed until next Monday... one hopes. As the next phase involves a lot of plastering and painting, then it's essential that the house is 'warm' and dry. 'Warm' means 'not cold', in this context, yer understand. So that missed heating switch-on deadline before Christmas has extended the schedule as one feared.
Now you should understand that I've spent the majority of the last ten years sweating it out as an IT project manager, so I'm well aware of the fact that there's no miracle in the world that'll allow a slipped project to return to its original schedule. The concept of a project catch up is a fallacy. Well, there are a few tricks evil project managers ('evil' means 'successful') can use, such as cutting out large swathes of scope, reducing quality to a laughable minimum, and, erm, swearing blind that "as you must certainly recall, the original schedule was totally provisional, so I'm pleased to be able to announce the definitive project schedule... blah blah blah".
So are we delayed one week? Two weeks? Three? Well we simply don't know yet, but should have the answers sometime next week when we'll be meeting that nice Huf Haus blokey again. Frau Claudia's going to ask him to bring along the new schedule, and (ahem) an explanation as to what exactly happened during those two weeks before Christmas that caused the delay. Not such a big deal, and we're not interesting in the pointing of fingers, the wringing of hands, nor the distibution of white feathers and pistols; but we'd like to... well, we'd like to know, that's all.
And the weather situation? A bloody warm snap. Again. No skiing worth talking about 'cos the Alps are free of snow. Half the plants in our garden are budding, and we have new dandelions sprouting in the lawn. Even worse, I reckon our landscapers could have finished the terra-forming after all 'cos the ground never did freeze up.
Looks like winter's been cancelled this year, which is fair enough because the last two summers were also cancelled. Bloody global warming, innit. Seems we're slipping into a two season climate: a long, wet spring followed by a long, dry autumn. Hmm, one could live with that if it wasn't for the lack of skiing.