Thursday, 6 September 2007

Chantier: Part 7?

My bedroom with new floor and missing window

It's been a while and I don't quite know where this is going, but I feel I should write about the house just to make myself feel better. Like putting it down on "paper" will make it all better.

So, do any of you remember The Money Pit with Shelley Long and Tom Hanks? Yeah, anyway.

Let's be positive here. The one handed electrician finished his work. And did a good job. When you mention the one handed electrician, who had a female assistant, people automatically ask, "one handed? But how does he do it?" Folks, I have no clue but he is a phenomenon. He can also talk the ass off a monkey.

The may remember that he was MIA. Well, he seems to be a specialist in disappearing acts. Last Friday, he came by to take a last look and was supposed to start on Monday. He came on Tuesday. And, thanks to him, our once very dry basement, now smells of a mix of mildew and old urine because the make-shift toilet he installed was a little too make-shift and he left a little hole in the pipi pipes.

He also informed us that he can't finish his work until GDF (gas company) has hooked up the gas line from the street...I'm blaming our chef de chantier (ie friend who was on vacation all August) for this one.

And don't even get me started on the walls, which may never be up...however, being an oldest brother has its perks since Jerome has managed to coax his brothers to work this weekend while I spend quality time with my little angel.

And I almost forgot the scare with the new floor - when an architect friend told us it wasn't sturdy enough for an actual bedroom. I'd rather not think about that one - it brings back memories of when my bedroom ceiling fell in the middle of the night when I was a kid (apparently, I didn't even wake up). But doesn't the floor look great? Aren't the windows wonderful?

Oh and the windows -the very large, light window openings which are currently closed with tarp because the architect (ie my husband) didn't think about the fact that they weren't standard sized and thus required custom made windows! Perfect as the fall rain and winds come.

We are at the point where, besides seriously dipping into our savings ("are you sure this is a good investment dear?"), we are considering giving notice on our apartment. We have 3 months notice to give. So, maybe I can get to the US for Thanksgiving, refuel my American batteries, eat some nice turkey and cranberry relish and come back ready to move since we won't be doing Thanksgiving in my house this year. And maybe not next either.

I think I'll just blame the French on all these delays. It's easier and better for my marriage than blaming my husband.


MadameK. Located in said...

Your chantier makes my chantier look like heaven.

Is it too late to get a professional architect to go over your building plan to warn you about standard sizes and such? Luckily we had friends who warned up about avoiding the standard size snafu. Those details cost you thousands in teh end!

Here's to hoping you don't have an attack when you get the invoice for those custom made windows!


Reb said...

my husband's an architect and so is the friend in charge of our chantier! grumble grumble.

Elisabeth said...

Seems like the shoemaker is always the one who wears the shoes with holes in them, right? That chantier of yours does sound like a living nightmare. And I am aware that dealing with workmen in France borderlines on the epic!


Amy H said...

Ooh Reb. We had to make that same choice in the spring - when to give our 3-month notice based on when we thought the house would be done. We were off by a month and the kids and I had to travel around while hubby finished the chantier. It's so nice to finally be in, though (even though we still have gaping window-holes on the etage). Some day you will look back on all of this and... ok, you probably won't laugh. But you'll be SO glad that it's over.

Deb said...

I seriously can't believe all the crap and hang ups you guys have had to deal with regarding this house!

But in the end, you will have your very own home built from scratch. Owning your own home is going to be amazing! I hope to follow in your footsteps one day!

Reb said...

Amy, seeing your house gives me hope.

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