So I got this crazy idea to check last minute flights to Europe and found a $150 flight from Cancún to Madrid. Going to Cancún is a bit complicated, and what does a French girl do in Madrid to get back home is another hassle but long story short it was too good to pass and I told BF as casually as possible “oh, by the way, I may be leaving to Cancún tomorrow morning to catch a last minute flight to Europe”. It led to him booking a flight mid September to join me for 6 weeks of motorcycle traveling around Spain, Portugal and Morocco, while I am still here and the $150 flight has disappeared from the search engines! It may be available again at a very short notice so I packed my suitcase in case I have to leave home running to catch it.
Update: I did make it to Paris, after paying for a very expensive flight. Sigh.
In the meanwhile, we are putting our affairs in order around the house, and it is a bit more complicated than it sounds. First there is the house itself. The chickens, turkeys, ducks and geese have to eat in our absence, even on Sundays when the handyman is not around. So we have to arrange with him that he comes more often but works less hours during the week. Then BF is worried about leaving the house alone at night. Most people have a night guard, and I have always said I don’t want to have a stranger 24/7 in my house when we sleep there, but for a month it may be useful.
There is not much of value inside the house, but you would have to break a $500 French door to get in and that would be really annoying. Plus the house, once broken into, would stay open until we come back and hire another guy to fix the window. The next option is to leave the door unlocked, meaning open to any abuse from people who would not have broken the glass in the first place but would check anyway and leave with a bottle of vodka or our high thread count bed sheets.
I don’t think anything will happen because we live there year round, some properties have been broken into but they are recreational houses whose owner come two weeks a year at most, while our house would still have a handyman working eight hours a day. BF is staying a few more days if I leave in a hurry to organize all that.
Then there is the land development. The half dozen workers who are still there are working on contract instead of being paid daily, so if they finish the job in one day or one month it is their problem, they will get the same salary. They are not doing much anyway, just keeping the land neat and building a few flower bed frames with stones on the roundabouts. BF wanted to have a caterpillar excavate to start a water tank that would gather rainwater while we decide on a well or water pump, but the caterpillar that came was not fit for the job so that project is postponed for now.
And finally, my dear bureaucratic friends… since I got my signed authorization to split my land by the council, the council had asked for more paperwork but apparently we only need that letter if anything, to pass the next step which is the office of forests and protected areas, so we are not contacting them at the moment. At the bureau of protected areas, I have been stuck for 6 weeks now. Every time I went, something was missing in my file. Would they pick up the phone and let me know? Course not. Do they have everything now? Of course! And then a week later, the same story.
I conveniently requested their blessing to “split my land” and not “split my land in 100” which could have arouse their will to ask even more stuff from a potential land developer. In the meanwhile I still had my architect draw 100 maps, and he was ALWAYS giving me the maps with the same errors. Until I called him incompetent (not my smartest moment), he didn’t take it too well and he never gave me the final maps. So I hired a new guy who did them, but think the previous one made a phone call to protected areas to let them know the angry little French girl had 100 plots in project, because the very same day, I received a phone call from them asking for the 100 maps I didn’t have. FML. Pardon my French.
The new guy sent them a week later but was still worried they would ask for yet something else. It seems not. They have let me know that one map had an error, which we corrected, and then now they should process the whole thing and give it to me… tomorrow. Everything has been about “tomorrow”, “next week”, “as soon as possible” since April. But I choose to believe it this time, as one of them seems to be really willing to help.
He kind of has an agenda, as a lawyer he would be happy to underwrite all our plot sales, and is “happy to help smooth the process”. We gave in and hired him as we will be in Europe for the next six weeks, and so far it looks like things are moving a bit faster since he has been in charge.
From the beginning, the public offices have always recommended I get the jobs done by specific people, but always gave me one name per trade, one engineer, one lawyer, one architect, instead of a list of approved people to do the job. Who are “the ones”? Probably friends who give them a cut of my business. So every.single.time. I have gone with someone else. And it has made life more complicated indeed.
Anyway, now that helpful guy happens to be a lawyer, and for once, we’ll do things their way, because we need to move forward at some point.
By the way you may have noticed that I went back to the blogging closet. Well, half way at least. I wouldn’t want one of those guys to Google me, which I think may have happened but can’t confirm as G analytics doesn’t track city location in Guatemala. Anyway, I wouldn’t want my file to gather any more dust because I talk a bit too loud over here.
That’s it for now! What’s new with you?
This post was featured on the Lifestyle Carnival, thank you!