Bouncing good fun!

A pity these hadn't been invented when we were kids!

We have just got back from Valencia (visiting the building plot) again. While we were walking from our hotel to the metro on the second evening we came across this little guy having great fun bouncing on the trampoline, supported by his stretchy ropes!

The latest pictures of progress on the house are, as always, here.

… sardines in a can

Japanese Subway

I think this is something I don’t really need to experience first hand!

Lots of progress in the last 7 days

Good progress with the roof

Antonio sent us around 130 photos this week, showing lots of details of the roofing work. We’ve culled them and added about 20 to our Picasa album. Click on the photo above as usual to go to see them.

The E.coli (EHEC/STEC) outbreak in Europe could continue for the next 3 years

There’s interesting article in Wired about how the source of the E.coli outbreak in Europe, that killed at least 44 people and infected over 3700, has been tracked to a supplier in Egypt. And why the outbreak is likely to reoccur at any time in the next three years.

In a couple of sentences, the original shipment of infected fenugreek seeds was a 15 ton shipment, which has been broken down into many, many thousands of smaller packages (well over 10 000) for resale in various European countries. The seeds have a shelf life of another 3 years, which means that if any of them get sold and used to produce bean sprouts within that time, the infections could restart. It looks it would be a good idea to avoid raw bean sprouts for at least that long.

Verkauft (Sold)

We have been to the notary and signed the contract to sell our house. For a time, we were worried it would not happen, as the purchaser’s bank took ages to confirm in writing that they could have a mortgage. The system here is quite different from the system in the UK. When you sell land or property in Germany (and in Spain) both the purchasers and the sellers (and usually the estate agent too – I’ll explain why later) go to a notary. He reads the entire contract out loud (11 pages of A4 in quite complicated legal jargon in our case) and if either party has any questions, they interrupt him when he gets to passage in question. When the entire contract has been read and understood, both parties sign it, and that is it. The contract includes the date that payment for the house is due, which is when it is handed over to the purchaser (the date can be flexible by mutual agreement).

In the UK, the buyers and sellers each have a copy of the contract which they sign independently of each other at their respective solicitors. When the half-signed contracts are exchanged 10% of the price for the property has to be paid, with the rest due on the “completion date”, which is when the remaining 90% of the price is paid and the house is handed over to the other party. If the sale is not completed for any reason the purchaser usually loses the 10% deposit.

Read more Verkauft (Sold)

Our roof has arrived

The erection of the roof has started this week
(click on the photo to see more pictures)

Antonio has sent this week’s photos of the site in Xàtiva. The roof has been delivered by Siminon in France, who did the prefabrication. We have a Dutch guy recommended by Siminon to do the erection – he thinks he’ll need three weeks to complete everything, including the roof tiles. He’s certainly making good progress so far.

As I have said before, the order that things are done when building a house in Spain are quite different from what we expected – here’s the roof being erected and the floor tiled and the exterior walls aren’t even finished yet! Still, so far everything seems to be working, so everyone appears to know what they are doing!