22 September 2014
We were definitely the “working couple” this past week. Hope this doesn’t bore you. But if you’re considering the working couple lifestyle, you need to know what’s involved with a gig like this.
As many of you that follow our blog and Facebook page know, Sharon and I both kept doing our regular jobs when we started the villa hosts and caretakers position. We put in our required villa project hours when we can which a lot of that is on weekends. My “regular” job isn’t as intense as hers so I have more time during the week days to knock out some projects, and I do.
Examples this past week:
A few weeks ago we found a rotten section on a wooden beam on the Pergola over the outdoor eating area. It wasn’t a small rotten place – pretty big – at least 12″ long and 2″ tall and almost all the way through. Through talking with the owner (formerly a boat owner and yacht captain) about the issue, he told me to get a product called “Git”-Rot and apply first to stop any further rot and then fill the cavity with wood filler.
These repair steps cannot be done in one day. And with the heat here, the “Git”-Rot, a 2-part epoxy product, even had to be put in the refrigerator to cool it down before activation and mixing. Supposed to be done and used in 70° temp or lower environment …. don’t believe I will see that temp any time soon – LOL.
Long story-short on the rotten wood repair, almost done after a week. Maybe 2 more thin coats of wood filler to get the board face right and we can then move on to pressure washing and painting the whole thing … after we get the rust off and stopped on the metal cross-beams. I’ll cover that in another post.
The villa is built with a lot – and I mean a lot – of concrete. You have a tendency to build hurricane-proof once you loose your home to a big storm. And these owners did in hurricane Marilyn in 1995. She was the most powerful storm to hit the Virgin Islands since Hurricane Hugo of 1989.
One assigned project is to keep the concrete walls around the patios painted and touched up before guests arrive and/or after weddings and events. Due to the heat, the flat surfaces of these walls get extremely hot causing the paint to blister in areas. So …. before you can paint, you have to cut out the blisters and peel off the paint where it is not adhering. That’s one project we did this weekend. And Sharon decided to use the time in the sun to work on her tan. Ergo the title: Peeling, Painting, and Bikini.
I must say, I have never painted with a bikini-clad helper before but I like it. And, when you get too hot, just jump in the pool for your well-deserved break.
Not only did we work on the patio walls around the pool but also painted the short walls of the east deck outside the owner’s rooms. This was a little more time-consuming because we had to do the delicate work of brush painting the caulk line I re-did a few weeks ago between the floor and the walls. But it’s done. Check that one off the list.
Then there was the canopy bed project. We noticed a few weeks ago that the canopy bed in one of the bedrooms was very loose and squeaky. Would not make for a nice guest visit – hanky-panky or no hanky-panky. It was in need of some serious TLC.
After removing the box springs and mattress and doing some inspecting and testing, we discovered how to tighten up every joint on the wood parts and also found the bed rails were very loose and got these secured, too. It felt good to get that bed tightened up and rid of all the squeaks and creaks.
Below are a few more photos of the work. By Sunday evening we were tired and ready for some R&R. We headed off to Hull Bay for some fish tacos (the best!), beer, and live music by the ocean.
How did that much rot, get over looked! Wait till you pressure wash and find more surprises. How old is the Pergola? May need replacement in a year or so.
Have no idea how it got overlooked by previous caretakers/hosts and the owners. Don’t think I will find more rot as I have tapped all along each board to try to find any. Hopefully we’re good. Plus, it is not that dirty so I won’t have to be real aggressive with the pressure washing. I believe most everything here was built between 1995 (when Marilyn blew the house away) and 1999 – they said it took 3-4 years to totally rebuild because it is so slow getting things done here and a lot of materials had to be shipped by container. Nothing is fast or inexpensive here – LOL
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