Big accomplishments, we now have a metal roof, our big wood burning stove and the sink drain has been plumbed.
First, the metal roof, we were gifted with the material for the metal roof, it was left over material from other projects, it was given to us by our good friends out here, it’s about 3 different colors, but no one can see it unless you are standing on the roof, and we are now water proof and much more wind proof. A few days ago, the weather report said we might get some rain, thunderstorms and possible snow, we had one day’s notice! So Bob went to work in the morning and didn’t stop until it was complete, in fact got sick from doing it, breathing all the dust (the panels were coated in dust and dirt, like everything out here) and the wind was relentless that day, sunny but cold, he had gotten a bit run down and having to cover the entire roof in one day just about finished him off… (he’s getting better now).
I didn’t get to help him, I wished I could have, that was the day I watched my neighbor’s dog Sam, and Sam couldn’t be left alone. Bob did a really good job, as usual :)
The next day, it drizzled, for about 10 minutes, just enough to make the tiniest layer of moist dirt, couldn’t even call it mud, but it was enough to make water run off the roof, nothing dripped inside, it’s also more quiet, when the wind blows it’s a lot quieter. We never got the rain, thunderstorms or snow.
Bob also plumbed the sink, no running water yet, but I can do the dishes inside at the sink now, and I can pour liquids down the sink, it runs through the floor, outside to the ground, we dug a pit and will fill it with gravel, basically gray water disposal.
Yesterday, I made a water run to my neighbor’s house, as I was leaving, Bob was hauling the big wood stove from the side of the house to the back of the house, this thing is big, it weighs around 300 pounds, Bob designed and made this wood stove, it works great, we used it to heat our whole house where we used to live, so it should have no problem heating our little one room cabin! :) I told Bob that I would help him with it when I got back, he smiled and said he would see me when I got back. Well, when I got back, he was on the roof, finishing the chimney cap and spark arrestor. He had, all by himself, removed the small wood stove, and put in the big wood stove, please understand, our cabin sits about 7 feet in the air, there is a 4 step tall wooden porch, that takes you half way to the door, you have to use a ladder for the last few feet to get inside the cabin, so carrying ANYTHING into the cabin is harder to begin with, somehow he managed to lift a 300 pound metal box, over 7 feet into the air, and got it inside the cabin and moved across the floor, and completely installed, all by himself!
He used a tow strap with a ratchet, like it was a block and tackle to lift the wood stove, I wished I could have seen that, I am continually amazed at what he does, all by himself. Last night, we were able to burn real logs, ones that last for hours, we cranked that baby up so hot, we had to open the windows to let in some cold air. I decided that I could use the surface of it for a cook surface, I took some heavy foil and layed it on top, I cooked homemade tortillas on it, they turned out great! It also heats up water for various purposes, mainly for making coffee, I also heat food on it, I open cans of soup or other foods, and I put the can on the stove top, it pretty quickly heats up the contents of the cans, fewer dishes are always welcome!
Oh, I almost forgot, I have to list all the animals we have seen in the last 2 weeks. We saw a family of collared peccary, these are wild pigs, native to the area, we saw 2 adults, a couple of juveniles and a couple of babies, they walked from the west side of the property, through our “back yard”, and up the mountain. One of the adults came over to investigate the compost pile, that was when I could gauge how big it was, and I must say, if it wanted to, it probably could have pushed over our wire compost pile if it had wanted to, no matter how many stakes it had. I was very happy to see it amble off after just sniffing around.
The other animal we saw was our little fox, it is really cute (yes, I know it’s a wild animal and I respect that), it came around at night, we threw a tortilla to it and it ran off with it’s prize. We don’t intend on making that a habit, the occasional handout is fine, but we don’t want it getting used to getting freebies all the time, we do intend to have chickens at a later date, and I don’t want any more problems with the foxes than we have to.
I also saw the herd of feral donkeys, these are the descendants of the working animals that were part of the ranch land that this used to be. I don’t know exactly how many there are, but usually I see 4 or more, they are on the small side, and seem to do very well around here. This is the first time I have seen them since I have been back here to live, I did see them once before while visiting, I was happy to see them again.
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