Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Anniversary and Punch List

It’s been a year since we bought the house. We had to have it entirely rewired before we moved in, and now, we are so glad we took that time and spent that money; the insurance companies have gotten more and more finicky about insuring houses in Florida. One of the newest causes for non-renewal is aluminum wiring, which is what we had taken out and replaced with copper wiring, not cheap, we can tell you.

We are so glad our contractor made that recommendation. For one thing, we sleep well at night, knowing the wiring is new and well-installed. For another thing, it was good to get it done while we had nothing in the house, and the workers had easy access to everywhere they needed to tear out walls, rewire, put back walls, etc.

Do you make lists? I have a list I made in November, and today I finished off the list. It had unfinished tasks going back to the move-in. You prioritize, you know? Even when you have accomplished the most important things, sometimes it is just too overwhelming to tackle the next thing so you take a break . . . and that break can stretch.

The little plumbing things are all done. Every single one. Wooo HOOOO. The final light fixtures are all up. Woooo HOOOOO! The outside watering system is working, woooo HOOO, and we have a guy helping us restart our lawn – wooo HOOOO!

It’s kind of like having a baby. If you think about all the things that need to be done before you do it, you might have second thoughts. It’s all-consuming, and it can be exhausting, emotionally and physically and financially. Just like having a baby!

And, now that I have come to the end of my punch-list, I would celebrate, except that new things are cropping up – the gutters, the drainage, the driveway, the air conditioning . . . nothing that needs to be done, no emergencies, but all which need some attention, some fine tuning, so that we are not dealing with an unexpected disaster.

It’s not like Trust Towers in Kuwait, where we lived in Fintas, or Al Fardan Gardens in Qatar, where we could just call the management if anything went wrong, and someone would show up to fix it. Now, we have to think about what we want, how much we are willing to pay, and we have to make decisions.

We are waiting for the air conditioning man to come. The electricians have told us that the inside and outside units (the expensive pieces) are fine; it is the thermostat that needs replacing, so we have to have the A/C people replace that. Meanwhile, I think I will sit back and enjoy our new light fixture.

Here is what I love. AdventureMan and I are so often on the same track. We wanted traditional – a crystal chandelier – but we didn’t want elaborate, we wanted simple lines, not a lot of embellishment. When we found this, we both knew it at once – welcome home, new light fixture!

And here is one other thing we love. Through our contractor, we met the best people. The plumber is good, and thorough, and honest. The electricians are good, and hard working, and serious. They are all knowledgeable professionals, people we can trust.

The electrician didn’t want to charge us. He said these were leftover tasks from last year. We insisted – a year later, this is on us, not on them. We fiddled around a whole year looking for what we wanted; it’s not fair to not pay after a whole year.

Sometimes we just feel so blessed, having come to this broad and spacious place, Pensacola.

March 24, 2011 - Posted by | Adventure, Arts & Handicrafts, Cultural, Customer Service, ExPat Life, Home Improvements, Living Conditions, Moving, Pensacola, Technical Issue, Values, Work Related Issues


  1. Just so you know–you have the same thing with a brand new custom home–all those little things you didn’t think about. My most recent and the most awesome–I had a surge protector put on my circuit breaker so the entire electrical system in my house is surge protected–no separate protection needed for computers, TVs, sewing machines,etc! One of my next moves will be screens for the gutters so the pine needles don’t keep clogging the gutters. Still working on landscaping–that will probably be a 10 year project the way we are going!

    Comment by ctothwill | March 24, 2011 | Reply

  2. Surge Protector – GREAT idea. I’ve seen lightning storms in Florida hit an entire house, refrigerators, computers, everything. Smart move, Momcat. Gutters are also on our list. Aarrgh.

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 24, 2011 | Reply

  3. Intlxpatr :
    Also you will need to put in a 240 Volt electric car charging station .It is the next Big thing coming .

    Comment by daggero | March 26, 2011 | Reply

  4. Really? People in Kuwait are putting in charging stations when gas is so cheap???

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 26, 2011 | Reply

  5. Intlxpatr :

    Oops I meant in houses in the States . see the video

    Comment by daggero | March 26, 2011 | Reply

  6. That is fascinating. It’s like plugging in a dryer, or an air conditioner, any major appliance wired for 240. Somehow, it doesn’t appeal to me. I’m not that great at keeping things charged up . . . . And electricity isn’t cheap, either. I wonder how it will go over, if it really is the next big thing . . .

    Comment by intlxpatr | March 27, 2011 | Reply

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