terça-feira, 30 de março de 2010

Francofileness needs language skills

Well I have been off beat for some 6 months or so, the situation with my vision has had a fair effect on me, it as ben quite difficult to get any focus that did not leave me feeling some what queasy, and the general run of life in Brazil as also left me some how not prone to writing about it, the news on the TV often seems to consist of the latest body, usually mutilated, that had been left by the road side or dumped on some even more waste than waste ground, the daily life in Jau has become some what monotonous of late although there are a few exceptions to this, but I feel that they would involve people that I know and I cannot see how I can tell their stories in my blog, but they do some how show the side of life that is very selfish and insular.
On a general theme I have now got another English person living in Jaua and one Australian, also a charming couple from Italy, the English chap was complaining about rubbish on the beach, a sad fact that I have mentioned several times before, his house, like my previous one, butts direct to the beach and for that reason he can see the litter being dropped as well as the after effects. I had told him that i have tried to write letters to the news papers and the TV stations, but have never received a reply to say that they would even get back to me with a response.
Well we decided to have a go at motivating the local representative to see if he could start up an action group and get the local firms and bus companies to take small hand bills and to then try to get a campaign that would go along the beach at weekends to challenge the litter.
I have had to leave Brazil after our first meeting and i am not so sure that anything will be done while I am away, most people say things and do not wish to use their time to get the ball rolling suficiently to get the ideal momentum. I was rather hoping to see if Unilever would act in setting up a recycling plant near to Jaua , one that could take in several of the small towns and therefore create jobs as well as clear the streets and beach of rubbish, this I felt would give incentive to a campaign and attract the larger local businesses, like Ford and the Millenium company. A form of advertised beach theatre could be put on over the weekends when there is a local influx of tourists which I thought could have the actors gathering children to collect rubbish along the beach so as to show the locals that their children have an interest in the environment even if they do not, this could be accompanied by the setting up of message banners, much like the Buddha flags in Tibet, along the length of the beach at weekends and for the beach bars to have T shirts with anti litter messages so that the message was taken direct to the table when serving beers and yet not necessarily verbal in your face as it were.

Still thats for the return along with me trying to see if I can get my house in Brazil sold and some cash liberated for my French project.
Here I am, in Courties just on the edge of Saint Puy, it was cold when I arrived several weeks ago but has had days of beautiful sunshine, some of it quite hot, although today as I sit at the table and look out at the garden, it is raining and windy, I am reluctant to think about going out, where has yesterday had a temperature of at least 17 degrees and was very sunny.
The house at Rue da Chateau is now mine, I signed the final documents the other day and picked up the key, now I am measuring and wondering how on Earth I can fit what I need into such a tiny space, worse because there is so little head room inside, 2.1 mts to the underside of the joists and 20 cms less for the large beams that hold these. The roof is new but put up in a manner that is some what strange to say the least, I think the roofers could not be bothered to cut the old timbers and get rid of them so have worked around them to create what I am sure is strong enough construction but not a classic roof and not one that can be opened up for visual inspection. I have had my foot through the loft floor on two occasions so that rules out using the existing boards in the loft and the ones in the downstairs are sitting on horrible beams, so that needs to come up as well.

The loft was a sad find, it is good that it is new but not in the way it as been done, so i will i think leave it as it is and replace the loft floor with newer timbers. I had so hoped to remove the upstairs ceiling and have the roof timbers visible, only putting a mezzanine on top of the new to be constructed bathroom, it would have given a sense of space and open the construction up, as well as giving me a small paint studio under the eaves....sadly not now.
The gable wall is also of a construction that amazes, it is a partition wall that is not tied to the front or back walls, made from 4 cms clay block which is only partly fired, thus not weather proof, and at the eaves under the roof, the roofers have knocked down a large section thus opening the loft to the elements.

I am now entering the stage of finding what regs I need and who to apply to and what I can do about the fact that my flimsy wall seems to be by all accounts a party wall. Also I have been negotiating for work, this seems sensible if I am here and needing money to do my project, I have been pleasantly surprised by how much work may be available and that for the restauration work that I do, I may well have very few rivals. I will need to now get registered for work here in France, a Siren number is what i am told, it will act as a registration for life and gives an idea to otehrs of what type of work I will undertake and where I am based.