Friday, April 24, 2009

Our continuing saga..... Puebla is putting us to the test

Well, I was offline for some days due to the fact that the cable company (who supplies our phone, internet and cable tv) had "issues" which shut us down..... have had problems since April 1st and got to the end of my patience so that took me to the Profeco office to lodge a formal complaint so I could get a response from Megacable.... I can report that they called me the same day I filed the complaint and even though they tried the PR approach (making me the bad guy.....) now have some good contacts at Profeco which made them show up at my house within 24 hours after having a most productive meeting with their Legal Representative.... but so far I can report a complete change of equipment to new modem, router, new connections as far as the light pole outside go, complete installation review, central station monitoring, a month free service (only fair since service was spotty at best), and direct numbers to delegates and people in charge which will get things done! YAY!!!!! Don't know if this will be a permanent fix (this is Mexico after BUT we're online, DSL is fast and the phone works, so far it's all good.....

After many days of trying to get the apartment/loft in shape, and while we're still far away from completion (don't have all the furniture and still camping out), I can report we got a line on a most excellent "fix it" guy who's really great and did a lot of the basic stuff we needed done all in the same day for a reasonable fee. He's definetly on our contact list and can be recommended, so this is a good step.

Kitchen is working amongst Ricardo's re-do work. Found most of the woodwork inside to be pretty ugly so we're stripping all and re-finishing in a lovely black-matte wood finish. Ricardo does the stripping and sanding and I'll do the refinishing work. We're not at that point yet and everything is full of fine sanding dust all over which drives me nuts. In order to cook anything, everything has to be rewashed so you can use it, plus you have to get out of here or face not being able to breathe, so it goes in small doses and work is slow- but it will be great.

Mr. Fix-it put in three large shelves in the kitchen where the small refrigerator should go (we have a very large side-by-side one which will live in the hallway across from the kitchen which is ok, but that leaves the spot for the regular fridge vacant so we filled it with shelves (large and deep for the industrial ice cream/gelato machine, microwave, coffee maker and coffee grinder, blenders, toaster and other stuff like that which I use and need workspace for; he also put in a work table directly across from the sink to give me space to work, chop and serve and it's so great I can't stand it (didn't have any space at all before so this is a big thing for me...); above this workspace I had him put some perforated compressed wood panels and once I paint these I will be able to insert hooks, holders and such to hold all my cooking utensils and anything that can be hooked on the wall (even small pots and pans!) and I will have it all handy! Will look very practical and industrial.

We also stored the small stove that was in the apartment and put in our large 5 burner stainless steel range with oven and broiler and put in another shelf next to it to expand the workspace. Two additional shelves where put in above this which will hold spices and anything needed as you work on the stove. All wood, including the wood unit that was against a wall in the kitchen and was UGLY (red tinge to the very shiny varnish covering the entire thing, UGH!) will be stained a matte black finish against the cream/white walls.... and if I can ever get the terrazo floors sanded and sealed, will look pretty slick (will they BE slick, Kitty already surfs around the place using the area rugs she has to nap on)

Our window screens should also be installed tomorrow and everyone is looking forward to having these in place as it will make it possible for us to open up the house and let fresh air in..... Kitty will especially love this since she was used to always having the windows open, day and night (don't think we can do this all the time due to the cooler weather here.....we hope) in Merida but Puebla is another thing all together, but at least during the day it will be wonderful to have. We are also closing the laundry room balcony so Kitty can be outside (where the potted herb plants are and washer and dryer) and still be "inside", much safer for her..... and will mean having the kitchen door completely open too (YAY!!!! goodbye cooking odors.... hello fresh air).

Today I would like a day off from errands and do-it-yourself projects and cleaning, so I'm trying to convince Ricardo to come play tourist this afternoon, have lunch at the Zocalo and just take a "breather"..... we can have lunch at one of the open air bistro's on the park and just enjoy the sights. Plus we can take advantage of not being the 5 de Mayo yet, we've heard President Calderon will celebrate 5 de Mayo here (where it all happened after all) BUT this means that the locals will have to put up with a LOT of inconveniances before, during and after due to the increased security, the setting up of the viewing areas for the parades and we're already fighting the traffic problems since everyone is practicing on parading (death for driving, bumper to bumper in back of marching bands) and setting up stands and parking areas..... and then picking up after everyone who decided to brave the crowds.... so maybe getting out of Dodge would be a good idea for the holiday..... Cholula, Atlixco, Mexico City or Veracruz or maybe even Tehuacan would be an option too.... we'll see what we decide on, maybe just hybernate for the day and be lazy..... (always an option...) and have a cooking marathon, mmmmm?

Anyway, have to get the guys up and going so we can go touristing, it's already 10:30am and they'll want coffee and croissants before doing anything at all.... coffee's brewing and the aroma is all over enticing you to have a fresh cup. Bread is in the oven rising and getting all flaky and tender and the smell of cinnamon, raisins, cardamon and coffee is entoxicating at best. How about that to wake up to?

Will take pics once we're further along and I will take pictures of this afternoon's foray into the colonial wilds of Puebla so check back to see more, ok?

Hope everyone has a good day..... TTFN.....

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