This Week In Home Construction
This is short. It's almost Shabbat. The food is heating, the stew is in the crockpot, the salads made but not dressed, everything else in serving dishes, and the guys have had their showers and I'm next.....
...but I've been away from the computer because of Home Construction Blues.
We're getting closer every day. However, the Builder's secretary, we suspect, has quit--because he is clueless and doesn't have any idea what has been ordered in terms of screens, windows, trissim, and so forth.
The ceramic floor in the kitchen had to be torn up to accomodate a water pipe to the patio which was overlooked. Fine -- old news, but as of today the pipe was in but the large trench were it was place was still open. The kitchen cabinets are coming on Sunday -- so the floor has to be 'closed' by then.
Thank G-d for Yossi (again)!
Between Ramadan, Eid and Rosh Hashanah, not much is happening on the job site this week...but Yossi is friends with Aoud, who took it upon himself to make sure the kitchen floor was finished by today. The Builder interfered and assigned Aoud to do other tasks, but both Aoud and Yossi protested, pointing out that the job site foreman has been promising to take care of this for weeks.....and hasn't.
So as of 2:00 pm today, the floor is finished.
Then Nadar, the electrician, pointed out to us earlier that the gas line is on the wrong wall. Uh, the cooktop is going on the east wall, not the west wall. The job site foreman's response was "Too bad, I can't keep track of everyone's kitchen plans." He was planning on taking the entire week off and didn't care. Yossi (again) told him this was unacceptable, since the crew had the kitchen plans, BUT that Yossi would make sure the gas-line guy came out on Thursday and fixed it. The deal, however, was that since it was the Builder's crew who screwed up, the Builder would pay for it.
Gas-line guy comes and looks at the walls. The work involved is basically punching a hole in the wall and running a line from the gas on the east wall into the kitchen. It ultimately took less than 15 minutes and his assistant did most of the work. For this, he wanted 500 NIS.
"No way!" Yossi told him, having already told me to shut my mouth and say NOTHING in English. I think it was the quiestest 15 minutes in my life.
Bargaining went hot and heavy, with Yossi capping it off with, "Hey, I'm not paying this, the Builder is. Should I tell him you want 500 NIS?"
The gas-line guy works for this Builder all the time, installing the gas lines in all his projects.
"Okay, I'll settle for 300 NIS," he conceded.
Yossi doesn't waste a minute. He calls the Builder from the condo.
"300 shekals?!" the Builder roars. "Is he out of his mind? Pay him 200 and not an agurot more!"
Done for 200 NIS.
The Husband suspects that in the end, Yossi's knowledge of "the system" here and his fierce determination to make sure his olim family doesn't get taken advantage of, has probably saved us tens of thousands shekels in the myriad of small nickle-and-diming transactions that go into building a home here.
Thank G-d for Yossi!