At the beginning of the month the Project Manager let us know that at last the steel roof structure had arrived on site from the factory and that Marco and his team had returned to the site to start fixing it into place, along with the additional traditional type roof construction that was required for over the garage / Car Port area and the corner section.
Over the first couple of weeks of the month we received the regular updates and we could see that the all-important steel girders for both wings of the building were put in place and that the more traditional roof structure sections were starting to get done. At last things are happening and the excitement level for us once again rose.
We had all along planned another site visit this month. Teresa has a half term break at the end of the month so it seemed a suitable time to go again. As it would only be for a week, the decision was to fly with EasyJet; it seems the simplest way from this part of the UK. We took the additional decision to go Thursday to Thursday, whilst this meant Teresa would have to take the Friday off, it meant we could save in excess of £150 on the trip (Flights and Car Hire) and she has a good team at the Nursery who are more than capable of covering for the day. For me it didn’t make any difference its 5 days I need off which ever way it works.
The journey out was very uneventful, thank goodness. Improved flights timings and no delays, along with a short queue at the car hire desk, meant that we cleared Lisbon airport and completed the drive across to the apartment at Quinta Ponta Nova by 11:00pm. Time for a quick cup of good ol’ English tea and off to bed.
We were up early on the Friday, you can imagine, with the latest updates, we were more than excited to see the progress for ourselves. It had been a long day on the Thursday so getting going was a little difficult but we managed to get out the door by around 9:30am to make the 25 min drive to our site.
As we turned off the main road and down the track to our plot, we began to wonder just if there would be any builders on site? There should be, but would there be? As we progressed down the track, the first thing we saw was a builder’s truck, having a wheel changed, we joked, probably our builder! A little further on, remembering that we very rarely see another vehicle on the track, it was suddenly like the M25 in the UK, cars, trucks, Bobcats, people everywhere.
There is a council constructed soak away half way down the track where we met all the traffic, and there were several pallets of blocks/bricks stacked up there, the Bobcat seemed to be loading some onto a small truck and then the truck and the Bobcat would start off down the track. “What the hell are they building down here now” was the comment. We followed the truck further down then track, when it became apparent that actually these were the bricks/blocks for our house, oops!
As we pulled up at the site, we couldn’t park on the site as it was just awash with builders, cement mixers, trucks, bricks, cement and kinds of building material. We made our way to the hut and we counted 7 builders. Wow!
Over the course of the week, we visited the site every day. On the Monday we had a site meeting with the Project Manager (Paulo) and the Builder (Marco) and discussed a whole raft of things, which I will write about in my next blog.
Progress over the week was amazing; the externals walls and the roof are coming together, you will see this in the photos. On the Wednesday the tiles for the roof were delivered. By the time we left on the Thursday lunchtime, most of the external walls were in place and as we left the roofers were getting the fixings etc. in place ready to receive the tiles.
So an extremely pleasing and exciting month and trip, as Teresa said she was “Chuffing Chuffed of Chuffington” Long may it continue.