We then asked Jannie if he knew of anyone who could plaster for us during the 4 days we planned on being there. After a couple of phone calls he gave us the name of a guy who could start straight away, so off we went to meet with him. His quote was acceptable and the plastering began. Mother Nature tried to intervene by dropping 100mm of rain within 36 hours, but thankfully we had decided to begin by plastering the internal walls, so that was able to proceed. But, in place of the 4 days quoted for plastering, it took 6 - apparently the walls weren't straight, and thus, in some cases, needed three coats of plaster. And, in addition, the rain poured in through the brickwork on the one wall and flooded one end of the floor. Our brilliant builder again!
Our makeshift shower (including the sheep trough which we used as a shower pan) beats showering in the cold early morning
On the positive side, RMan completed the conduits which will run the 5mm heavy core cable for our 220 / 12 volt electrical requirements. And, as all the internal plastering is now complete, and as soon as we get our floor in, we can basically move out of the caravan into some "lebensraum" (living space). Ronnie is fighting me - he wants to lay clay terracotta tiles as opposed to the lime / oxide tinted screed that I am keen on. One of the positives for the clay tiles is that they are produced in Swellendam, so the transport footprint is dramatically reduced. The costs are exhorbitant, so we are going to check out their "seconds" next time we go up. We have also discovered that the double glazing is absolutely amazing and worth every cent - even with the damp plaster on the walls it was noticably warmer inside the house at night and very much cooler during the heat of the day. Wish it was possible to replace all the windows of our house in Cape Town! At night it is so warm in the house that Ronnie has scrapped his idea of using the Dover Stove to heat the water for underfloor heating - it just won't be necessary.
Also, we have now found a brilliant builder / plasterer and, all things being equal, it should be plain sailing from here on, not only for completion of phase 1, but for phase 2 hopefully sometime next year!
The rain, inconvenient as it was, was worth it, for we had the most incredible sunrise the morning after the rain - it was absolutely stunning!