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New Construction

Lease / purchase

Phase 3: The construction of the remaining 11 residences.

Scheduled to begin in November with completion expected
by January 31.

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Progress Report

Jan. 3-5, 2005 // CONSTRUCTION LOG #13

Construction

Synopsis: This was an incredibly hectic, chaotic, frustrating and yet rewarding week. I hope not to go through another one like it but think that is wishful thinking.

Comment: We are down about 10 employees this week. It happens every holiday -they go to Nicaragua to see their families and have difficulty getting back into the country.

Front Wall

The stucco work was finished and the lights installed. Now, only the trim needs to be finished. The waste containment area is now essentially completed. The roof up to the tin was installed and is now awaiting the installation of clay tile. The walls were parged and stuccoed and the exterior and interior gating systems were installed. The inside access needs to be covered with a cloth like material to prevent visibility to allow airflow. The irrigation systems is ye to be finished.

Front bodega:
(furniture storage, laundry room, and employee change room)

The structural steel work is now completed. It will be boarded and the roof installed next week. This has gone o.k. given that we have nothing other than an floor plan -the architect never got around to giving us anything else.

Compost and Garden Centre

We've started work on this and should be completed next week. It is not too complicated -three containment areas and one for the shredder along with a cement pad as a work area -mixing, plant propagation area, etc. It is located in an well hidden area.

New Houses

All the substrate is in and compacted. Screed lines are mostly in place and the first coat of for parging has been applied. Next week we will begin paging the interior and exterior walls we have erected.

Unit 105: it is completed. Everything works. As usually, there's a day's work yet fixing some finishing issues. We are in the process of landscaping it. It really came out great; better than envisioned and will serve as a model for other units. The pictures tell part of the story as interior pictures don't show very well. The rock was sealed with two coats for matte sealer, then grouted, and then sealed again. At the last minute I decided to put in a ceramic backsplash-it was functional and provided "eye candy"; viewing it now, it was certainly the correct decision.

Unit 103: Work has continued to advance on this. Boarding and taping are essentially completed. Exterior base coat of stucco has been applied. Most of the tile work has been done. It is nearing the painting stage. Kitchen and other cabinetry work has been ordered. The "eye candy" is beginning to be applied and next week's pictures should show a significant change. It needs to be completed by Jan. 18 as we have guests for a few nights and the unit is rented effective February 1. They are working overtime to make it but they will. The paint might still be wet and a few tiles might jiggle a bit but we should make it.

Unit 104: This will be the next victim of renovation. The guy worked overtime on Saturday afternoon to clear it of furniture and make it ready for renovation first thing Monday... Target date for completion if mid February. The exterior will be developed similar to #105 with entry and copula being the same. I'm thinking of using a different color rock for the entry way.

Unit 108: We are still trying to get a design for this. The first one is not adequate. I have a working session scheduled for Monday with the architect. As a fall back plan, I have accepted an offer from another architect to provide some ideas.

Marketing

This week we gained two new tenants -one effective immediately and the other Feb. 1. We also received an offer to purchase #105. I'm going to have to renegotiate a couple things on it. If it doesn't go, then I believe I have several other people waiting in the wings.

The brother of my investment counselor from Toronto looked us over this week while in the country on holidays. He expects to return in a month or so, whenever we have a vacancy such that we can accommodate him on site so he can live here for a week or so and get a better fell for the property, area, and lifestyle.

Others are coming in a couple weeks to check us out and will be here for 5 nights or so.

Building permit re-application

We're out of step 1 and into step 2: Monday we are suppose to hear how long it will take at that stage.

And last, but not least, the filter on the large pool had to replaced. Guess the sand is only good for a couple years. We're still learning.

The auxiliary leach line and sump pit was filled in and is now finished.

Goofs

There have been some do to lack of detailed supervision. I've had to be off site getting materials, talking with perspective renters/purchasers, entertaining life long friends who are staying with us, the site superintendent was away parts of several days, work strung out at different stages, etc. A door got hung backwards (the working foreman wore a "dunce" cap for a day and then we moved on), the rock on the entrance was started to be installed incorrectly, landscaping was done differently than planned. All these were little things and we recovered from them without major impact but they shouldn't have happened. Renovation work is simply more complex and requires many onsite decisions by workers and by me. I've simply been strung out too much this past week.

The special "repello" product fell off the wall when it dried. We called the supplier and he said he had had problems with a batch because of bad cement he got which is one of the ingredients. He replaced all our supply and we're now back in business at that end. He's also invited us tomorrow afternoon/evening to his mountain weekend retreat where he says we can see an absolutely magnificent sunset and evening view -it's way, way, way up in the mountains; hope we find it and then find our way back in the dark. If you don't hear from me next week, I'm still lost.

Our Lives

Dagwood Sandwich party: a great success, lots of fun. I think Terry Quinn got the prize for the best sandwich-I don't know how it got is mouth around it. We had shaved roast pork, pastrami, rare tenderloin of beef, roast chicken, salami, and tuna fish for the non-meat eaters, and of course a variety of breads, accompaniments on the sandwiches, etc. I left at 8 pm when I had solved all the world's problems and was out of beer.

The rest of the social week was much the same-delicious meals-grilled marlin (my favorite), steak and ribs at our local Santa Ana restaurant, and of course Manchu Piccu fish restaurant came through again.

Our friends from Quebec went to the coast for several days and returned here on Wednesday. This has been a wonderful change for them and a real treat for all of us to renew our friendship of 35 years.

My Canadian friendly electrician arrives this week on a cheap ($358 RT / Air Transat) fare. He'll be here off and on for a week.

Weather here has been cooler than normal; that is to say, it's been around 23º C with a fair amount of clouds. No rain for us; some showers in San Jose. This is not a hardship; just a comment.

I noticed the price of a head of butter leaf lettuce: 28 cents USD. We're making Caesar salad and spaghetti with fresh baguette this evening. Somehow, my friend remembers my spaghetti. He's supplying the red wine. Sounds great to me!!!!!!!

The parrot and Hugo? I think they're still here. I haven't had time to spend with them. Hugo bit my hand in the middle of the night to tell me he had no food. I suggested he consider the parrot!!

Bye from: Brian, Lita, Hugo, and the parrot.

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