A day in the Life (+ workmen on site)

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arjay
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A day in the Life (+ workmen on site)

Post by arjay » January 21, 2007, 11:13 am

This is my attempt at giving a mildly amusing insight into a day in the life, living in Thailand, when you have workmen around the house.

My apologies if some of you find it boring.

It's surprising how quickly the day passes here and often without me managing to get out of the house, when you have workmen on-site.

This is my attempt at conveying the flavour. After 10 minutes (of running to and fro) I am sweating...... read on.....


Pong arrives - we climb on the garden wall (yet to be re-painted ) and discuss why and where the gutter is leaking.

I point out where it is overflowing, which he didn't cure before, and where it is coming through his screw holes! :? We agree what he will do and where he will put silicone etc. He points out dip along the front and says he will try and raise the gutter there.

Next to painting the garden wall - Pong asks for secateurs to cut back shrubs overhanging the wall (which he is about to paint).

Pong then asks for hacksaw to cut plastic bottle in half to put paint in

I go inside, Sone makes coffee :)

P asks for a scrubbing brush to clean garden walls reading for painting, I look for and give him. Then he asks for bucket of soapy water for same, which I get.

I go back inside.

P shouts out, "scrubbing brush no good",... do I have brillo type brush - look for one but can't find, offer wire brush. :)

“Hose for cleaning?” …I get hose for P and turn on

Do I have paint roller, no not that one, a different one

P asks for step-ladder

Now the workmen digging the Well arrive - (3 people today -

"You….water" :o (for drinking) - (Oh good they speak English!!!! :D ). I go inside again and decant a bottle of water from the larger fridge bottle and then refill the fridge bottle. They sit down outside and eat breakfast.

We all inspect Well - now about 2.8 ms deep with overnight rain in bottom.

They rig up gantry and pulley and start bucketing out the soil and water

I run back to computer again and to drink my cold coffee, too late P wants a saw to cut Bamboo back with, get that from on top of wardrobe.

Back inside - no wait P again - something to cut the grass back with, so he can paint bottom of wall better.

Garden shears don't work well now, since he sharpened them :x - I demonstrate and cut some of it for him. 5 mins

He carries on with roller - I point out fine spray on my newly painted red sala floor. :(

I get P a brush to do the edges/bottom ends of wall

Meantime S puts washing out and goes back to bed - bored.

It's now 12.00 noon, so I had better shower, shave and think about where to eat lunch or go. I have post to be collected from PO, - oops too late it’s saturday today. :oops:

Oh, looks like the well men are packing up again, that's 2 hours (same as yesterday) - they are trying to balance 3 jobs at one time and don't stay long enough to make significant headway. :( Asked S to go and look and discuss any issues - explain I want them to stay longer each day and get it finished quickly - and not take 2 weeks at an hour a day. Also explain don't want them to stop as soon as they see water at 3-5 metres, - want them to go to 6 or 7 metres to be sure of a long term supply of water, and not dry up after 2 weeks of no rain. She tells me that will be more money, which I realise, but she is slow to realise!

Aside note - if you don't watch them they will splash mud on walls from well. P will splash paint on ground, sandwash path etc and conveniently not notice, and of course here everything is dry within 5 minutes.

Oh good, they've re-started digging again. :D It was only a break.

It's like a grey clay coming out now with lots of wet sandy material. There is a steady slow stream of water entering the bottom of the hole from the far rear side. About 3.5 metres deep now.

P breaks off to come and look, - says he's off to get ciggies. I give money him (money me) and ask him to buy M150 (like Redbull) or coke for workmen, plus a coke for me. I give him 100 baht = #1.40 sterling. He comes back with 5 bottles of water @ 5 baht each = total 25 baht and pockets or buys his ciggies with the rest, but no coke for me. :?

I ask P to make sure he paints the bottom bit of the wall, which wasn't painted by the Burmese before and is black and mildewy, and which he too seems to be avoiding. :roll: He points out better if I had previously agreed to him cutting back the uneven rock projecting at the bottom of the wall, it would now be much easier for him to paint, and a “big job - better for him! :) I say yes, big job for him, but then make another big job, pointing and cleaning up the path afterwards and then another job repainting the wall again after that. :shock: (He likes to keep himself in work!!) :lol:

I have made it clear to P not to touch the front garden wall near where they are doing the well, yet until they have finished. I don't want to have to do it again.

He did the architraves around the doors and windows yesterday, which kept me in work!!! :wink:

Ok, it's now 12.40 pm, - I'll try the shower again now. :wink:

Ok managed to shower without interruption, even put my towel outside without getting caught. Though P seems to have disappeared, probably to spend the residue of the 100 baht!!

You may ask, why don’t I just go out. Well I do sometimes, but the danger is you come back and find they’ve gone because they couldn’t plug into your electric, or couldn’t ask you about something, or didn’t have something they needed, OR that they quickly put only 1 coat of paint on everything, splashed it everywhere else, and then tell you it’s all finished. :x

Well at 1.30 let’s head off for lunch. :)

Come back about 2.15pm. All’s well!! :D

P seems to have finished painting the walls except for the one around the “well”, as we agreed. And he’s now cleaning up the equipment. :D

Well men ask for money to buy concrete liners and off they go.

P and I discuss paint colour on architrave.

3.30 - Concrete arrives. They want to put/stack them on the front lawn. 14 x half metre concrete rings. S says yes. I quickly say no. They unload them by crane and park them neatly outside the front wall in the road. They also use the lorry’s crane to neatly hook out a large projecting rock from part way down the well hole.

I watch the concentric waves in the water at the bottom of the well from the lorry’s vibrations, plus some slips of soil from the side. :o Everyone says no problem. :D

Now a discussion about money. After some to-ing and fro-ing, it transpires that they want to up the cost per metre for the last 2 metres below 5 metres, as it will be harder work. I agree, though irritated, as every time P helps with translations the cost seems to go up. :?

The workmen go, saying they will put in the concrete liners tomorrow, for sure. :D P also goes. :D

I check around and see that P has conveniently left my brushes and paint roller in a paint container and a kitchen bucket, now covered in paint. My tools are scattered around the place and there are many paint splashes on both the tiled rear patio and on my newly painted sala floor!! :x It takes me about 2 hours to clean that lot up, including the outside kitchen sink which is also paint-stained. Good job it’s only emulsion paint! :)

It’s 6.00pm now and getting dark. Sim (neighbour) arrives and in view of the dark rain clouds, he offers me a large plastic cover to put over the well hole, which we secure minutes before an extended 45 minute downpour and storm. :)

I go and shower, quick, before the electric goes down in the storm. S. prepares the evening meal. :)

That was a flavour of a day in LOS, with workmen around the house, though generally speaking an easier day today. :lol:

PS. Next morning lots of water in the well hole, though from underground, not above. :) Oh, and I spotted my garden shears laying, now wet and rusty in the wet grass. :roll:



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Post by laphanphon » January 21, 2007, 12:02 pm

yikes, my head hurts just from reading, good luck, need some valiums?

makes me appreciate Gem's grandad as working supervisor when house built.
GOOD BYE CRUEL WORLD

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Post by polehawk » January 21, 2007, 1:13 pm

First thing I would do is FIRE PONG ! Unless he's your bro-in-law, of course.

Just kidding. Hate to see anyone lose their job. He must have some redeeming qualities.

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arjay
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Post by arjay » January 21, 2007, 2:02 pm

He (Pong) does have some redeeming qualities, in that it is difficult to find workers around here and if you do they are quick to rip you off. He can turn his hand to most types of job, plumbing, concreting, painting, metal work etc., is reliable, does a reasonably good job quickly, at a fair/modest price, and speaks some English. Though he tends to make a mess and work for me and create 2 more jobs when doing one! :lol:

He has previously replaced 3 windows, constructed a sandwash concrete path, repaired the roof, cleaned out the water tank (got inside it himself) and water filter and dug out and re-constructed a waste water sump. :)

This time he painted right round the garden walls, (1 coat) plus the door and window architraves and fixed the gutter (I hope) all for 1500 baht. That took him 2 days. He had previously painted the house walls for 500 baht. Some Myanmar boys wanted 4000 baht, reduced to 3000 baht to paint the garden walls previously (3 coats), and then made a total dog's dinner of it, because they didn't even know how to paint and they spilt and splashed paint everywhere. :x

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Post by Dakoda » January 21, 2007, 8:10 pm

Fire everyone :!:

And I thought I had problems. :D thanks, your guys would not make it to day two :!: :lol:

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Post by beer monkey » January 21, 2007, 10:31 pm

great story arjay. any pic's of the days antics ?
like the 100 baht bit, 5 bottles of narm,ciggies and no coke for you.
The splashing of paint and mud sounds familiar too.

Now if you keep a saw on your wardrobe, where do you keep the shear's ? Image

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Post by arjay » January 21, 2007, 11:08 pm

WELL, here's a few of the well, under construction:-

Image


Image


Image


Image

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Post by Dakoda » January 23, 2007, 12:01 am

Well guess this is a good topic to vent on.

Started the ceiling and would think a no-brainer. They were instructed to do all the steel work, then start putting up the steet rock on the outside first.

Ok thats close to what they are doing. But can't keep the seams straight. Square holes instead of round holes, some are rectangles. Steel done inside? Its there but not finished, boss man said it was ok to put up insulation in AM, steel guy at 5PM says not ok, will need to tear the insulation. Ya, right over my dead body :!:

Oh and the best part. They are working on ceilings, right. Do they bring ladders, or staging, of course not. They used my step ladder and my electricians ladder and now his staging. One day when I got there early and needed the step ladder for some work, they looked like sick puppies.

Oh well week two starting

Did I mention square hole.

agh :x

On the same subject. Started to tile one bath. Found a professional, good work, brought his own tools, (well except he procured my hammer, and when leaving at night, took it with him). But he did really good work, came up with some good ideas and finished the job, and at thai prices. He is a keeper. But that was last week.

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Post by arjay » January 24, 2007, 8:14 pm

I thought you might be interested in seeing this guy. He was found down the bottom of our well and has now been shipped off to the archeological museum/hospital for carbon dating. :lol:

Image

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Post by beer monkey » January 24, 2007, 9:01 pm

Did you take that statue from nong prajak when you left town arjay ? :lol:

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arjay
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Post by arjay » January 24, 2007, 9:04 pm

No, he's from Phu Foilom!! :lol:

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Post by briang » January 24, 2007, 10:35 pm

Wow He's overdone the whitening cream! :lol: :P

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Post by arjay » January 30, 2007, 1:50 pm

I thought some of you maybe interested in seeing the finished product.

So from here:-

Image

through here:

Image

and here:

Image

almost there:

Image

and finally:

Image


Image


Image

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Post by lee » January 30, 2007, 2:06 pm

Time to make a wish now LOL!

WELL done, nice photos!

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Post by Doc » January 30, 2007, 4:01 pm

Hard to believe that you actually spent any money Arjay. :lol:
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Post by beer monkey » January 30, 2007, 5:59 pm

the last pic looks very pretty with the plant pots,and you did check to see if the thai bloke was'nt still in the hole before the concrete top went on.?
Can You Dig It Dug.?

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Post by arjay » January 30, 2007, 7:10 pm

Doc wrote:Hard to believe that you actually spent any money Arjay.
I'm not sure what you are insinuating there Doc, but I am a value for money person, whether I am eating out, drinking, purchasing something for the home, or just working on the home.

I like to see such things as an investment, as opposed to money just going up in smoke!! :D

It should give many years of free and clean water. The normal water supply round here, is from a private company's lake and is quite dirty. :D

Beer Monkey wrote:the last pic looks very pretty with the plant pots,and you did check to see if the thai bloke was'nt still in the hole before the concrete top went on.?
There's a little hatch in the lid, where he can pop his head out for a quick ciggie! It's a no-smoking well. :D

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