Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Moving house

We decided to move house for a variety of reasons. Where we lived was dusty or muddy depending on the amount of sun or rain. This meant that how ever often I mopped or swept (weesped as my husband says it), the house was dirty and the dogs were even dirtier. The track outside the house was one of the main thoroughfares and so was busy and noisy, kids constantly encouraging the dogs to bark, and a stream of venders broadcasting their wares through loud speakers. There was music from stereos from every house behind, to the side and in front for what seemed like 24 hours a day. Time to go.

On the one hand it is not easy to find a house to rent as there are no signs outside, no listings in local papers, but if you put the word out you are looking a constant stream of people appear who take you to various houses - all hoping you will rent them and they then receive commission from the owners. In the end it took around a month to find the right house. Nice and spacious, my first ever en suite bathroom, guest room, lovely outside terrace where Danilo could work, surrounded by concrete and not mud, and high walls all around. Plenty of space for the dogs, and in a quiet area.

It took 4 days to move as, unlike England, you do not pack things neatly in labelled boxes and then they are collected by a professional removal company. Everything was thrown in my jeep, beds and sofas were balanced precariously on the top with guys standing on the sides holding on to them. Things which were too big or too heavy for the jeep were carried, the cooker was wheeled here in a wheelbarrow. I stayed at the new house to arrange things here, and to save me stressing out as I saw how things were thrown in the jeep.

The fridge arrived safely, but they did not take anything out of it and so it was full of ketchup and mayonnaise, soya sauce and melted butter. The back fell off the washing machine, and we had to mount it on blocks so that the hose could fit in the drain hole. The top from the wardrobe went missing, as did the screws to put the doors back on. In true Dominican fashion screws were simply taken from something else, so an item which had four screws now only has 2 or 3.

The inverter for the electricity was moved and re-installed. For some reason whenever we were on inverter power, the mouse on my lap top went crazy. It was eventually discovered that although the house was wired for earth that not only was there no earth, the earth wires had been stuck to the positive ones and so double electricity was coming through the plug sockets. It was no big issue for the Dominicans who lived here as their plugs had no earth prong. Mine do. The electrician told me just to snap the earth prong off the plug, but I said I preferred him to fix it, which thankfully he did.

So now we are installed. Happy, no mosquitoes, no noise, no dust. In just a couple of days I have got used to the cockerels who start at 4.30 and am sleeping like a baby. The dogs love it too as they have more space, more shade but less people to bark at.

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