Back in Victoria with a notebook full of experiences from my first few days getting down to work on the long to-do list for our new Merida house. Although I must credit others for doing most of the work. A lot got done!
On Sunday I picked up the house keys and met property manager Maggie Cardena. She is effiicient! On Monday the huge tree that hid the house was hacked back to a manageable (though temporarily leafless) size. A shiny new deadbolt lock on the gate replaced the puny padlock and chain, we'd met the neighbors and the tax/water and electrical accounts were getting sorted out. All thanks to Maggie.El Arbol, before and after: I knew there was a house under there somewhere!
Did I mention we have electricity? I had assumed the account was shut down, but on Maggie's suggestion I tried the main breaker (duh!), and instantly we had lights and fans. Funny how a bit of electricity can be all it takes to make a house seem quite liveable.
I was surprised and impressed by how efficiently things got done. Julio and his assistant worked strenuously all day at the big fig tree with just a machete and an axe. No power tools. I guess gas is more expensive than labour. Before the cutting began, we had to find someone to move two pickup trucks that were parked under the shade of the tree. So Maggie and Julio marched down to the market a block away (I tagged along, feeling like a bit of a goof) and they asked around to find the owner. They found him - and he wasn't too happy about losing his shady spot, but probably better than having his camionetas dented by large falling branches.
For my part I managed to get the floors more or less washed, though I don't know if I will ever get the hang of the Mexican squeegee method.