Thursday, June 14, 2007

Cooling Off in Chacala

It really seems to be getting hotter and more humid by the day in Chacala. Everyone says it’s warmer than usuaI for June. And I believe it. I am dripping with sweat most of the day. We had another little rainfall last night, but not much.

I did some rearranging and made some minor improvements around the place today. Mostly I did thing to keep cooler.

I moved my bed under one of the windows, so I will be directly in whatever breeze comes thru this room. In one window, out the other. It’s great that the two big bedroom windows are facing east and west, so they pick up whatever breeze comes off the ocean.

There’s only about an hour of morning sun coming in the east-facing window. I pull a sari across the window to keep the morning sun off my worktable. I have a shade rigged up from a blue tarp to keep the late afternoon sun off the west window, so it’s pretty cool inside.
I need the fan on low at night now. And I sleep with no top sheet until almost daylight.

I increased the cross-ventilation in the room by adding a screen to the operable glass window in the upper part of the door. I’ve never had a screen there before, and it makes a big difference to be able to open it.

If I deadbolt my door from the inside I can leave the glass window open. The screen is only a piece of mosquito netting duct-taped to the door, so someone could reach in and open the door if it wasn’t dead bolted, with the key. Not that I think anyone would do that, but still….
Anyway. It feels good to increase the breezes in here. It’s 4pm and I am guessing it’s about 90 degrees and pretty humid.My other project for this morning was to move the refrigerator to the other side, the west side, of the patio. It’s been on the east side since my first winter here and I couldn’t seem to keep the morning sun off it. And it’s barely strong enough to keep things frozen without the sun shining on it. Now I hung a curtain to keep the afternoon sun off the fridge and it seems to be working. I like how it looks. Things seem more open and you can see the ocean view before you come unto the patio.

And the big improvement is that the fridge and the curtain seem to be blocking the afternoon wind when I am trying to cook on the two burner gas stovetop. I used to have to pile stuff up around the stove to keep the wind from blowing the flame out. But now the wind seems to just go around the other way. I just cooked a bunch of hard-boiled eggs, and didn’t have to protect the flame with tinfoil, or whatever.

Then I added a new reed mat up at the roof line of the patio roof, to block more of the morning sun. It works great. Shade all morning.I have some downstairs neighbors who I think are going to stay for awhile. They are a couple who are working down at Las Brisas from about 10am to 10pm, so I don’t see much of them. But they are very clean and neat and nice. They are using the water tank out back to wash clothes, and today Luis came home in the Economico Muebles (Cheap Furniture) delivery truck, with a gas cook top. So it looks like they are getting set-up to stay for awhile.Plus the workers who are installing the retaining wall in front of the house, down at the road, and working really quickly. It looks good, and they are filling the planting space with dirt as they go. Things seem to be going okay around here. Of course, I hardly ever know what’s Really going on around here, so I guess I won’t hold my breath.

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