Yes! Armando and I have finally cleared the building lot (formerly and lovingly called The Jungle) of all the scrub trees, bushes, and vines. We have about a dozen large burn piles that I hope to set off early next week. Yesterday, I asked Armando to bring two more men today to help drag, roll, and carry the hundreds of tree trunks (we were able to leave nearly all the nice trees), limbs, and branches that are too wet to burn, out to the road. The woodpile in the photos below was done by three men by noon! We have a truck lined up to take this wood away.
An aside: After the experience of clearing this one small lot, I can’t imagine the work it must have taken to build the Panama Canal. There is an excellent book titled The Path Between the Seas that documents first the French attempt, then the USA’s ultimate completion of the building of the Panama Canal. It is an excellent, historically accurate read, about 700+ pages, and I couldn’t put it down. Also, you can view live PanamaCanalCams here: http://www.pancanal.com/eng/photo/camera-java.html?cam=MirafloresHi.
Now that we can walk around in the lot, I spent some time today with a 100-foot tape measure and a few fluorescent-orange tipped wooden stakes. I did a rough marking of the corners of the house, and I noticed the excitement in my blood. I called Cynthia on the walkie talkie and she came over; we walked the lot and I pointed out the stakes. In agreement as to the location of the house, I could then lay out the driveway and what I ultimately wanted to accomplish, the location of the driveway entrance. Now Monday, Armando and I will be able to put five heavy, four-foot concrete drainage pipes in the drainage ditch that runs along the front of the property. After covering the pipes with dirt, we will have an official entrance!
After the burn piles are nothing but ashes, I will hire a backhoe to go into the lot, pull the tree trunks, and flatten everything out. The ashes will go back into the soil. There is not much more that can be said about clearing a building lot, so here are some photos (click a photo to view larger, use the back arrow to return here):
That’s all for now. Next is the driveway entry, haul away the woodpile, then get the backhoe.