Back to Bidness

The Quail Manor bristling with all sorts of bidness go'n on. And, I should be able to get back to a musing routine.

SWITBO departed the scene on an 06.00 jet plane. Which affects our story since your musist was required to get her there on time. That all got done with the expected volume of fussing. Back to the construction office to muse. When I hear a heavy truck coming up the hill.

It's dark. Like no glow in the sky dark. Heavy equipment coming up the hill on South San Jose Drive has to be mine. Some very intense musing...stucco. The finish coat. Turns out it arrives as a pallet full of 5 gallon buckets. Went out with a flashlight to find a place that is flat, not going to block access, and contains no plants. Turns out to be harder than I expected but we found a place the outer limit of which is marked by your musist standing with a flashlight. Better to die protecting the plants than to damage a plant...

Shortly there after an army of English as a second language stuccoers arrives and sets to masking and stuccoing.

Worked like dogs all day. No collateral damage that I can spot so far anyway. Took real good care of SWITBO's plants. She had put buckets over them as protection. When they went past one, they removed the bucket. Very civilized. Took advantage of the newly roofed pergola for lunch. Not quite done stoccoing, but close. Today is the rest and a "parge coat" (check out the link, it's from Stucco News...who knew) on the perimeter walls.

Most importantly, the color looks great. Lots of compliments from passers by. Also looks great with the blue on the front and back and doors. And even more importantly, looks great with the not intended to be quite so orange and bright trim. Tones it down to about where we wanted it. And, after the stuccoers got back to it after lunch, Dan of DnT and I were monitoring the irrigation and noticed the newly roofed pergola shade pattern on the newly stuccoed house. Looked very southwest so we went in and occupied the shade...

Shortly after the stuccoers hit the scene, Jason the Cynical Electrician (whom, frequent readers may recall is technically known as JCE) arrived with much less drama. He set to making up boxes. We went with straight white since most of the internet connected switches and outlets only come in white. Looks great against the wall paint. Very crisp. 

Most importantly, he installed the ceiling fans. Things of beauty.

And, at some point Manny the HVAC guy arrived to start setting the gas pack on the roof and installing the registers inside. Then MORE heavy equipment arrives. A crane to hoist the gas pack onto the frame Manny et al have installed. Frame custom made of angle iron to fit our slope and dodge all the stuff on the flat metal part of the roof. Nicely painted. I knew the neighbor directly across the street was in the HVAC bidness. Turns out he and Manny are old palls.

Most importantly, they installed the Nest Thermostat. It's on the wall as you come in the house. So it will be welcoming me, or SWITBO, or any of you's when you pass through the front door. What you may not notice is directly above your head when you enter the front door will be a Nest Protect looking for smoke and carbon monoxide. By code, we need three. One in each bedroom and one in each living space. In the Quail Manor there is only one living space so we catch a break there! Decided to just have JCE install plain old alarms to eliminate any confusion during the final inspections. Turns out the Nest Protect can't (or won't) coexist with regular alarms. Seems that by code they all have to be interconnected and there is no standard for communications, so to adhere to code all smoke alarms in a house need to be of the same brand if they are to interconnect.

CtC has returned to the fray. Said he got sick with a cold. I believe him because he looked like hell. Says he has not been to Africa, or Cleveland, or Dallas, or any cruise ships so hopefully not Ebola. Sent him home early. After we unloaded the interior doors. Look great. Real crisp sticking. Like 'em.

And he brought samples of the moldings we'll use. We're going with a real simple Arts and Crafts style. Butt joints, no routing in the wood so we were able to go with MDF since it's uniform as hell, comes primed and cheep.The baseboards will be 5 1/2 tall, around the doors will be 4 1/2. So beefy moldings. I think will look good.

Meanwhile, I was in the south side yard continuing to fuss with the access boxes for the black and gray water sewer clean-outs, the gray water diverter valve, and the end of the gray water stub out. All this stuff is on a steep slope, near to each other but not so near to be covered by one box, and in an area where a landscape wall to hold the grade for a path and the gate in the fence will be located. A lot of parameters to optimize. Been back of mind task driving me crazy pretty much ever since the under slab plumbing went in back in June. 

Many approaches have been tried and failed. Last week with the presence of The Brain Trust we all put our minds together. Which meant I had to dig it all out AGAIN, and install three boxes. The upper box was trivial. The middle box required the building of a foundation wall with scrap pavers, bricks, and the ever present "A" Mountain rock to get to a point where I could set the middle box on the foundation so it was high enough to align with the upper box. Had to look sharp. This middle box contains the grey water diverter, which I have automated, but still need access for when it inevitably breaks. The the lowest box contains the stub when we figure out what to do with the grey water.

Installed the boxes and built a bunch of walls with the waste concrete from the good old slab (that was in the bad old stem wall) and moved a bunch of dirt AGAIN so we establish grades for the path and the steps the fence will need to get down the slope. Let's hope this is the last time!

Here are the pictures. Includes a lovely shot of the new Internet connected irrigation timer.