Getting OLD

Exercise
I thought exercise was supposed to get easier the more you did it. I have been trying to walk the Stations of the Cross here most days. Before Les’ mom died I walked it about 20 times in one month. After her mom died we spent one month in CDO so of course I was not able to walk it at all. Plus the air is so polluted in CDO that I think exercise that makes you breathe hard might actually be worse for your health than good for you. As a result I pretty much sat for a month.
We came back to Camiguin on January 21st and since then we have walked the Stations of the Cross about 4 times. We just finished walking it about an hour ago. It is a 12 mile drive from the room we are staying in to the walk and takes about 20 minutes to drive (lots and lots of curves in the road.) I stopped and got fuel for my truck after we got home so it has now been over 30 minutes since we finished walking and I am STILL breathing very heavily.
We saw about 10 foreigners on the walk while we were walking. That is by far the most we have ever seen. One of them was from Calgary. He was RUNNING down when we met him. He said he ran UP as well. He said he would see us again in a few minutes because he was going to do it AGAIN. We did see him almost at the top about 30 minutes later and he was extremely sweaty but he was still running.
I have managed to walk the path twice in one day two different times but I rested about 6 hours between walks and it STILL almost killed me.
I really need a Fitbit or some other heart monitor to see if I am getting in better shape or not. It does not FEEL like I am improving but who knows.
Les just brought me my dinner (cheesy baked potatoes that were baked, sliced then fried with onions mushrooms, bacon and lots of cheese.) I asked how she feels. She said she is all rested up so I guess it is just this old fat out of shape man who is suffering.
January has been a great month here weather wise. Pretty cool (low to mid 80’s most days) by Filipino standards without too many days of rain. I dread the start of summer here. It will be upper 90s almost everyday.
I only had 5 guys working on my house this week so it has been slow but I should have 10 guys this coming week. I will take some pics soon and post them here.

Don

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Latest news

Trivia reading and the latest here.
Lately I have gotten away from reading so much on the internet but I was bored today and took a stroll. This is some of what I read.
I started reading this story : https://www.mansionglobal.com/articles/54002-new-zealand-farm-the-size-of-monaco-expected-to-fetch-10m?mod=mansiongl_edit_outbrain_Dec
The story mentioned the population and population density. I wanted to compare that to Van Wert county so I went to Wikipedia to read about VW for the 20th time in my life.
It gives links to the adjoining counties so I clicked on Allen county where I worked construction before I went to GM. That led me to click on Lima. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lima,_Ohio
I learned Lima’s oil field was, for about a decade, the largest in the US. Between 1887 and 1905, the Lima Oil Field was a world-class producer, yielding 300 million barrels. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Faurot_Oil_Well.jpg

Lima also had 20% of the market for railroad locomotives.
I also found out that Superior Coach Company was once the nation’s largest producer of buses. I was actually in the Superior Coach factory shortly after it closed when I was a 1st year apprentice.
The website about Superior Coach said something about the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrollton_bus_collisionhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrollton_bus_collision.
I read that article and was amazed. I do not remember hearing about it even though it had to be major news at the time.
Not much is happening here in CDO. The carpenters are on holiday break now. They said they will come back on Jan. 3.
One carpenter and 2 laborers worked for one day on Les’ mom’s grave getting ready to put a roof over it. They set 4 posts of 4” plastic pipe and filled them with concrete. They were going to continue working on it the next day but I had a gall stone attack and could not leave the house. Between extreme chills when I thought I would freeze to death and diarrhea I was prisoner in my house.
The men worked on the house we bought and completely remodeled for Les’ mom while I recuperated. When we restart on the 3rd I will have 2 guys finish the grave while the other guys finish what needs done on the house we bought.
I am guessing sometime about the last of January or the first of February we will finish here and I will return to Camiguin to resume work on my new house.
I want Les to go with me but since her mom was the main care giver of the kids while we were gone I guess Les will stay in CDO until school is out sometime the end of March or early April.
I am losing about 2 months on my house so now I hope to move in about the first of May.
The concrete floors are poured on both floors. They need to put the horizontal studs in that the insulated steel siding will screw to. They need to build the roof trusses that will be made from steel. After those two jobs are finished it will be a quick job to screw the steel siding and roofing to the steel studs and trusses.
Next will come doors and windows followed by soffit and fascia around the roof and eaves and I will be weather tight.
I have 3 Milwaukee impact drivers that I bought here for $500 EACH. Can you spell O U C H ? At least that will make the screwing go faster.
That is about all for this year. I hope you all had a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Don

Typhoon

Typhoon
We came back to CDO on the 21st. We brought the workers back to CDO where they live so they can spend the holidays with their families.
A typhoon wet near us on Dec. 22. No winds here but lots of rain. Many of the streets and houses were flooded but we were lucky and stayed high and dry.
We lost city water early yesterday morning and it is not really on yet. We have a tub in our bathroom and the faucet has been on for about 20 minutes but I only have about 3 gallons so far. I am sure every house in the city has at least one faucet on so it may take a LOOOOONG time to get back to anything like normal.
One thing I hate about CDO is the very very very low water pressure. On a good day we might have a stream of water the size of a fat pencil. Normal flow is the size of a small pencil. Bad days we only have a trickle the size of a pencil lead.
Since there was no wind to speak of and our house on Camiguin is only about 40 miles as the crow flies from us here I do not expect any problems at our house under construction.
To make sure my tools do not grow legs and run away I bought a 20’ shipping container and set it on top of 4 concrete posts to put it about 2 feet above any possible flood on our lot on Camiguin.
I took a few pictures of them pouring the concrete for our second floor and will attach them here.

 

House update

House progress as of November 24, 2017

I took a few pictures of the bar joists that the guys are welding and setting into place for our second floor.  I know I made them much much stronger than needed and am putting in more than necessary but I am not an engineer and do not know how big they need to be or how many I need so rather than take a risk of them failing I am over building my floor.

After the bar joists are in place they will put down a steel deck and then put in the rebar for the concrete.  I will pour 4” of concrete for the second floor.

The rooms we are renting to live in until our house is finished are made mostly from wood.  We are on the second floor over what could be a garage but is just used for storage by the absentee landlord. The floor joists are wood as is the floor.  It squeaks a lot and is just made from rough hew boards.  There are gaps of various sizes between some of the boards.

I look forward to having a rock solid floor that does not squeak when I walk on it.

After the floor is poured we will put the steel in that will take the places of wood studs.  Mine will be horizontal so the vertical steel siding can be screwed to them.

Exercise and health

Exercise and health

I hate to exercise so much that I have to force myself to do it.  I think Les hates it even more than I do.

For the last 3 days in a row we have walked to the top of the Stations of the Cross here on Camiguin.  For those of you like me who know nothing about the Catholic faith they put concrete statues of Christ in 15 different times of his trial/persecution. They almost always do this on the side of a mountain or steep road.

In this case it is just a path up the side of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Hibok-Hibok.

It is one of the seven volcanos on Camiguin.  The path starts out as concrete steps then turns to sand/stone.  It is .83 miles to the top and you gain 572 feet in elevation according to my GPS.   It does not go very far up the mountain but it is enough for a good workout for me.

It is not really hard to do if you are in fair shape but Les and I are both fat and out of shape so I especially am pretty winded and have to stop to catch my breath several times while we climb it. Les is 35, I am 62 so I think I am doing ok.

Since we have done it 3 days in a row it is getting a little bit easier each time but I still sweat a LOT and have to rest. It took us 31 minutes to get to the top today compared to about 40 minutes on Sunday.

We met another foreigner Monday who said he was told it takes about 30 minutes but he said he did it in 20 minutes. He said the 30 minutes is Filipino time.  Lol

We will rest tomorrow or maybe just walk around the streets of Sagay then do the Stations of the Cross again on Thursday.

Don

Blackouts

Blackouts

I feel very very sorry for the people in Puerto Rico who have been without electricity for over two months now.

 

The power goes out at least one time every week on Camiguin and it is a pain in my ass.  Even though it is normally out for a few minutes at a time I am sitting here in the dark at 10:03 PM .  The power went out about 9:25 and came back on about 15 minutes later.  It went out again only seven minutes later and has been out  about 20 minutes this time.

I have a small battery powered fan so I am not COMPLETELY without cooling but it only helps a little bit.  I cannot imagine  living with no lights, no fans, no A/C no refrigeration or power to run all the other things we have become so used to using.

I have moved a freezer here from CDO and bought a refrigerator here so I am good for awhile.  If the power would stay off for a long time I would have to go to where they are building my house and get my generator to keep my food cold.

It is one thing for the Amish or someone else to live without power because they are used to it but for most people now they have no idea what life would be like without power.

I am different than most people and ALWAYS like to be prepared.  I have always had a lot of flashlights and batteries on hand just in case.  Since I came to the Philippines I have come to appreciate battery powered fans (I have two, one here and one in CDO.)

Since we have so many freezers and refrigerators for the store I have a big diesel generator ready in CDO all the time. The power there does not go out very often but when it does it is normally out for a longer time than it is here on Camiguin. I normally just plug a power strip into my generator and plug everything into that.

When we started my house here my electrician (yes I am paying a man to do the electric on my house, it is costing me A LOT, about $4.50 per day) he asked me if I wanted a transfer switch put in. I said no because I was not used to the power being out on such a frequent basis.  Now I will definitely put in a manual transfer switch. That will be so much easier.

It has been out for well over 30 minutes now and I have no internet connection to send this so I will just save it and send it later.

The power came back on shortly after I wrote that but then went off again for a few minutes about midnight.

I look forward to moving to the new house so it will be easier to have a backup generator.

 

Don