Now that we’re got our small team of workers on-site every day, they are able to fix a lot of little issues that pop up. We’ve had a few of those in the last couple of weeks. Need metal framing needing to be re-welded? One of our team is a welder and has all the required equipment! Water pipe brakes and starts leaking. We can fix that too! Driveway cement tiles cracking? Let’s fix them now. It certainly helps to have a multi-talented team on site.
Each week I discuss what we need to do with the team and then go out and buy the required materials we need for the week’s projects with Pak Slamet.
Cracking or crumbling?
One of the biggest issues we face is our floors. They were made out of white cement, but they were done badly. At best, they are now cracking. At worst, they are crumbling. Cracking I can live with, but crumbling is disastrous.
We have a lot of floors to be fixed….actually all the floors. The offices, the studio, the 2 floors of our home. There are 2 big issues with getting it fixed. Firstly, any tradie I contact always says they definitely know how to do it and will guarantee their work. After living in Bali for 5 years, I know that most will simply say “yes” to everything, and their guarantee is not worth anything! We’ve had people recommended but we’ve also heard some horror stories about those same recommended people. So it’s really hard to know who to trust. Even our trustworthy team of 3 said they can do it, but clearly they don’t have much experience in this particular field.
Secondly, floors don’t crack immediately, it takes a while. So if you do a test sample, and it looks good, you may think that you can do the whole villa, only to discover a few months later that the whole villa needs to be redone (again).
We did a few sample tiles in our studio a couple of month ago and have been waiting to see if they deteriorate. Unfortunately, some of them were done by our team and they didn’t hold up, so we know we need definitely external help to get this done right.
Upstairs, all our bathroom floors are cracking. Not being waterproof creates another big issue as we definitely don’t want water to leak through. We had a recommended tradesman come in and quote. We asked him to do a small area in one of the kid’s bathrooms, just to try him out. He didn’t turn up a few times (!!!) and after he eventually did do the job, within a month small cracks started reappearing. It doesn’t bode well. So we need to find a better solution!
We did have one big success though. I’d been wanting to build an outdoor shower since we moved in, but there were always more urgent jobs that needed to be done. Before we moved to Bali, an outdoor shower was on our list of must-haves for villas we were looking at (strangely, it didn’t occur to me that we could simply build one ourselves!). We spend a lot of time at the beach so they are great for de-sanding and a lot nicer than washing off with my garden hose.
Finally, it was time to build the outdoor shower. We had some leftover tiles from this build, as well as some that I had harvested from an old villa that we renovated and recently visited. We tried out a few different options before deciding on the same tiles that we had used in an upstairs bathroom.
We showed the team and planned the design, using a gorgeous shower set I had got from Paloma. It took a few days to level the area, pour the cement, lay the tiles and install the shower set, but it looks fantastic! I love arches, and incorporated a bunch of them into our home, so of course, I had to add an archway to the cement wall behind the shower.