Monday, November 30, 2009

November update

November update
Wow, I didn’t realize that I haven’t updated my blog since the first of October. We’ve been really busy trying to get out little place livable. We finally moved into our house the first part of November. It’s still not finished, but we’re picking away at projects. What else is new? The house is just 600 sq ft, with a living room/kitchen, bedroom & bath. It’s turning out to be very comfortable and perfect for the two of us. The wonderful thing here is that we have the guest house (which is the two bedrooms above the bodega) for company. That’s a hint to anyone contemplating a visit! We just roughed in a counter in the kitchen and will try to build some cabinets as we can. We’re not carpenters AT ALL, but we’re not trying to impress anyone, just want places for things. The little Mennonite house is still full of dishes, books and beds for the guest house. Progress is slow, but we’ll get there.

We brought down a submersible well pump for the cistern and it’s functioning perfectly. We put in a large pressure tank to get water to all the faucets. We bought a 10 liter, on demand butane water heater which has been a learning process. Our plumbing has it’s foibles, but is working. We won’t talk a lot about our Biolet composting toilet. It’s working ok, but can’t say I’d recommend it to anyone, especially for the money. I’ll post photos of our toilet progression. (now that’s something to look forward to).

The solar is a fantastic success (so far). We still don’t understand how to read all the meters, but we have our lights, DC frig, DC freezer, 2 DC ceiling fans & well pump all working most of the time. We also watch videos at night and use power tools during the day. All indications are that we’re not even putting a dent in our capacity. Yippee!

We drove down from the States in our lovely little 2000 Toyota Tundra. Well, the poor little thing isn’t quite so lovely now. It’s truly a “Belize” vehicle. The main street in San Ignacio is Burns Avenue. It’s a single lane, one-way, street. The weird thing is that the first half of the month you park on the left-hand side of the street. From the 16th on, you park on the right hand side. Anyway, I was driving on Burns with the cars parked on the right. There was a taxi stopped illegally on the left and just as I started to drive past it the passenger in the back opened the door INTO THE SIDE OF THE TOYOTA! ! ! By the time I realized what had happened & got stopped, the door had dented and scratched every panel on the driver’s side. I won’t go into the whole hassle of the thing, but we had to spend the whole afternoon in the police station and various insurance offices. He admitted the fault, but not sure about his insurance. It’s another “Oh Well” at this point. We did find a body shop (generous term) and got an appraisal (which you have to pay for) for the insurance company. $2,000 Bz. At least it’s drivable and with the help of the body shop, the door now opens.

The first part of the month Art traveled back to Oregon to visit the VA. His diabetes is always a concern, so will maintain that connection. He’s lost 30 lbs and is doing wonderfully. We’re pretty pleased and proud of ourselves as I’ve actually lost the same amount. The heat, work and lack of refrigeration, limiting our food choices all contributed to our success. Hope it keeps going.

Well dear friends & family, that’s it for today. I promise to do better with updates and will add photos.