Foggy days, rainy days, writing, housekeeping and global warming

We never thought we’d willingly do it but we did. We’ve been without air-conditioning for 12 days and we don’t mind. I don’t care if it makes Meralco unhappy. I’m happy if Meralco’s unhappy. I’m happy that I contribute less to the depletion of the ozone layer and global warming.

The view from one of the windows of my second floor study/office

It isn’t just because it’s been cloudy, foggy, gray and raining for the past few days. That’s a factor, I’m sure, but the real deal is that ventilation in this house is just so great and we don’t miss the air-con at all. We’re getting the most of the cool air up on the hill. This is the reason we moved to the suburb, the cool air and the smell of trees and the chirping birds and singing of the crickets. It’s something we lost and missed when the old neighborhood went bad. Now, we have it again and we’re loving it.

And another miracle has happened. I’ve mentioned several times before that I’m really not a morning person. I was practically a zombie before 9.00 a.m. Even on schooldays when I got up at dawn to prepare the kids’ packed lunches, most days I went right back to sleep as soon as they were off. But since moving… darn, I wake up before the sun is fully up. I bake, I cook, I take photos… By 7.30 a.m., I start writing. My twice weekly newspaper column? I can write two in one sitting. No sweat. And still get the blogging done. Damn, I love this house. I love the space, the quiet, the super productive ambience that is every writer’s dream.

Working on the veranda

Speedy has become less grouchy too. I suppose it has to do with each of us now having our own space for our personal activities. I don’t have to work on a desk in the bedroom when he wants to sleep or watch TV. Even Sam and Alex… I don’t think it’s just my imagination but it seems that there is less bickering between them. I can only hope that all of this is not simply an association with the novelty of the experience of living here. I hope all this becomes the actual state of things rather than a phase.

Sounds surreal? Unbelievably perfect?

Not perfect. Of course, there are little things. Like the bathroom plumbing. Water leaking under the sink in Alex’s bathroom. Sluggish drainage in Sam’s bathroom. Our bath tub isn’t working because the water keeps draining off. Then, there’s the faucet in the kitchen sink with its water that smells of rusty pipes. And the windows that don’t close snugly so that when the rains are accompanied by strong winds, everyone scampers to do what he can to prevent the rains from drenching the wooden floors upstairs.

Nothing that can’t be fixed, for sure, and there’s a plumber and all sorts of construction people to do the job without costing us anything — all part of the renovation package included in the sale. It’s not a brand new house and we’re not the first owners. It’s a five-year-old house and, if the neighbor’s little boy has been telling an accurate story, the previous owners gave it up because they could no longer pay the electric bill and Meralco cut off their power line. Boy, oh boy, when Speedy first heard that about a week before we were due to move in, I thought he was going to call the whole thing off. It’s like his knees buckled from beneath him and he sat on the sidewalk beside the clubhouse and broke in cold sweat. His response, of course, was to get rid of most of the halogen lamps that the previous owners seem to have been fond of and install those energy-saving lights. He had long and very detailed discussions with the electricians, believe me. The little boy’s story upset him so.

Ergo, the house having been in existence for a few years, and having weathered the wear and tear inflicted by the previous owners, there are little things that a fresh coat of paint and repolishing of the wooden parquet flooring won’t be able to hide. Not that they were purposely hidden from us. We inspected this house many times before we signed the documents but there are things you don’t discover until you’re actually living in the house. Our previous house was brand new when we bought it and there were too many problematic things too. So, I suppose this house’s little imperfections are a reality check, and effective reminders that there’s no such thing as a perfect house and we’ll really have to work on the upkeep of this one.

Sam and our Persian cat, Pepper

In addition to all that, there’s the stupid router that is incapable of transmitting signal over the entire house. There’s wifi internet only on a portion of the second floor. I don’t know if a booster will do the trick. Meanwhile, Sam is complaining. She has brought her laptop out of her bedroom and has been surfing on the corridor where the signal is better. Speedy’s not too happy about the lack of wifi downstairs either… When the signal in Alex’s room goes down, she shouts out loud that she’s losing her signal. It just seems to me that there’s an unspoken command that I run and capture the signal with my bare hands and transport it to her bedroom.

Oh well, anyway… I was just going to write about how much better I am writing these days and look how much I’ve written. Like I said, the house is just so conducive for writing. :wink: