“The NeverEnding Story” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.


In bed by 22.15 hours on Sunday so up bright (well it wasn’t bright outside) and early yesterday morning at 03.30 hours for my ‘pick me up’ mug of black coffee on the veranda. Oh and, of course, my daily intake of news via The Times on-line.

When I got around to checking my In Box I found that I had received an email from Excess International Movers (the company that we are using to ship the goods we have had in storage since leaving the UK in May of last year) advising that our consignment is on its way and should arrive in Belize City on 8th September.

Regular readers of this blog will probably recall that the contract we entered in to with Daniel Camal, our building contractor, envisaged a forty week duration for our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize. Well, the forty weeks was ‘up’ last Saturday. This is not something that surprises us (because we were aware that there would be an over-run some weeks ago) and nor does it disappoint us. We knew that there would be a delay to the competition date when the windows took longer to get here than any of us had anticipated. Having seen them installed we are convinced that they are well worth the wait.

Whilst ‘in’ Gmail I sent an email to Daniel to let him know that contrary to our previous advice that we wanted white grouting used for all tiles (aside from the Milan Super Crema tiles for which creme grout will be used) we have changed our mind. Having seen the Verde stone tiles laid for the First Floor verandas we now want a grout that is closer in colour to the tiles. I’ll let you know what colour we end up going for.

With email correspondence taken care of I showered, shaved and dressed and headed off for breakfast. Yes, at Estel’s. No surprise there, was there! Whilst I was there I bumped in to Charles and was able to find out when food will be prepared and cooked (as only he can) by Charles and available at Lola’s Pub & Grill . Was I embarrassed when I asked the question. Why? Well, because it’s already started – it started on Saturday evening. Some newshound I am (not)!

I was forced (well unless I wanted to get really soaked) to move inside Estel’s when the sky darkened and the rain came down. It lasted around forty minutes and when it stopped I quickly went to The Greenhouse to buy some vegetables.

Once ‘home’ at the condo we are renting during our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize Rose and I knuckled down to deciding what we want the kitchen island/table to look like for the Ground Floor self-contained apartment. Armed with photos we had ‘screen grabbed’ from houzz, a tape measure, some paper and a pencil it didn’t take us (well Rose really) too long to come up with a sketch and dimensions. Once completed we sent it to Daniel.

Around 14.30 hours we set off to visit our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize and hadn’t gone too far when the heavens opened up again and it absolutely bucketed down (English expression for ‘rained heavily) so we pulled over and took a degree of shelter from the driving rain. After around twenty-five minutes it stopped and the sun came out and we resumed our journey again.

When we got to the house we stopped first to have a chat with Edgar (the granite man) who had started work on the granite for the countertop of the vanity unit for my bathroom.

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Edgar at his workbench.

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The granite for my bathroom. “Absolute Black”. Now it has been washed it looks just as I hoped it would.

Close to Edgar was the welder who has started on the railings for the western (lagoon) side veranda of the First Floor.

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Cutting a support post to size.

On the other side of the lot the completed railings for the Second Floor were covered with plastic sheeting to provide protection from the rain. These will be painted with an undercoat (to also provide a degree of rust protection) and then receive the final coat of blue (and having seen the tin of paint in the bodega it looks as if Daniel has managed to come up with the French Navy that we want).

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Protected with sheeting.

Close by Christopher was busily working on tile off-cuts to produce the skirting (or as Mike has advised, base tiles).

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Christopher at the tile cutter.

In to the Ground Floor self-contained apartment and we found Wilson laying floor tiles in the smaller of the two bedrooms whilst in the larger bedroom Angel was ‘making good’ around the sliding window (door) frame.

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Finishing coat next and then the painting starts.

Up on the First Floor Alfredo was applying masonry sealant for the plycem ceiling above the northern veranda.

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Note that the floor tiles have been covered with plastic sheeting to provide protection from paint splashes.

Looking north I saw that the house next door had gone.

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Only the support posts remain. Oh, and an old chair that has ‘seen’ better days.

But as one building disappears another is quickly emerging because to the south of us Jason, our next door neighbour who owns and runs Pirate’sTreasure Restaurant and Bar (and Pirate Villas too), is building a serious BBQ and oven.

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It’s huge.

Up on the Second Floor we found Ernesto and Appolito applying grout to the tiles in Rose’s bathroom and in our bedroom we saw signs of the never ending story of tiles cut for the skirting.

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The headline for today’s edition is based on the single released in 1984 by Limahl (former lead singer with the brilliantly named group Kajagoogoo) which reached number four in the UK Singles Chart and number seventeen in the US Billboard Hot 100.

6 thoughts on ““The NeverEnding Story” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.

  1. Hi John,

    Since you get elected to do the job you can rest easy. Simply hold can over grout line and spray in a straight line. Hmm, ok, see if Rose can spray a line that follows the grout. LOL.. Good luck. And you don’t have to wipe it off – just try to put most of it into the grout area.

    We got ours at Lowe’s or Home Depot — so maybe Brodie’s would have it. It was called by a name that couldn’t be mistaken for anything else — like “Grout Sealant” or some other original thing that an ad guy would shudder over. I used one or two cans over two medium sized bathrooms – nothing like the area you’ve tiled. So a case wouldn’t be too much. I think I waited several hours and went over them a second time to be sure. The bead check is the biggie. If it beads then no dirty water can enter. If it does wet tile wait and hit the area a second coat. If I remember up here the cost was around $7 – $9 US a can. Not cheap but it has done the job so it was well worth it.

  2. I have a suggestion that really helped us on our tile, John Henry. Be very sure to have your builder (or you) seal the grout after all is done. We used a can of spray that you applied over the grout (don’t have to wipe up excess) and it is absorbed into the grout enough to block any water from penetrating into the grout.

    We didn’t do this in our first house and as time (and spills) went on various areas of grout darkened a very marked amount from the original color… not good at all. This sealing will keep the grout it’s original color. To test if your seal is good enough you simply pour some water over the area and the grout areas should “bead” up – showing no penetration.

    We did seal at our new present home and the grout has stayed just fine!!

    Your house is shaping up wonderfully — I know you can’t wait til moving day!! Good Luck!!

    Julian

    • Hi Julian.

      Thanks very much for the tip re sealing the grout. Not part of the spec for our build so I somehow think it is a job for me. I will start looking in the local hardware stores today.
      Thanks again Julian. I would never have thought of it until the damage was done.
      Kind regards
      John

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