I spent the day painting one of the washrooms at the community centre. Again, we waste nothing around here, so we use up whatever extra paint is given to us. Our little one-room school had recently refreshed the inside and outside walls with two shades of blue. The teacher was kind enough to donate the remnants of each colour. The washrooms are all built of concrete blocks, so very porous. That was my first challenge... we didn't have any primer and we only had a small amount of paint. As I was painting, I could see the paint soaking through the rough concrete surface. I thought I would need three coats to get an even finish, but surprisingly, it looked fine in the end with only two coats (I forgot to take pictures, but when I go back to do the second washroom tomorrow, I will take pictures and show you all the result in my next blog post).
I just have to mention that there is an open gap at the top of the wall (quite a large gap, but still high enough to allow complete privacy). There are no window glass panes. It's open all year round. There's no real need to closed them up. Well, while I was in the room, even with the door shut, it was like being in a wind tunnel. It was loud and VERY breezy. It was nice to have ventilation, but this was ridiculous. I was almost forced to keep my eyes closed.... which I assure you is not good practice when one is painting! It was the oddest phenomenon considering it wasn't a particularly windy day.
We had our dear friends Cindy and Larry and new friends Bonnie and Joe come for lunch. Bonnie and Joe have only recently arrived in Costa Rica and have decided to settle in San Marcos. Bonnie had sent us an email to introduce herself and husband, Joe, and mentioned that they were friends of Cindy, Larry and our mushroom farmer friend, Tony. They also stayed at our friends' Annika and Roger's guesthouse when they were scouting out the area. Bonnie had read my book and said they'd like to meet us one day. Kevin and I thought "no time like the present", so we invited them up with Cindy and Larry (Tony was unable to join us).
Kevin smoked some trout. I made Ceviche, guacamole, soup and homemade bread. The weather was perfect: warm and sunny. We shared stories, got to know each other a little better and had a lovely day. It's always nice to make new friends.
After painting the bathroom and feeling so relieved at how much nicer it looks, I decided to tackle the last room in the house... the loft. I have no 'before' pictures, but basically the walls were plain white and we used the space as extra storage so it never felt cozy. We had boxes strewn here and there... we had two portable racks where we hung are heavier coats (the ones we rarely wear here) and a few of my dresses. It wasn't a disaster area or anything, but it was far from inviting.
When members of our family visit, they stay in the guesthouse so we've never felt the need to make a big deal of this room. It's tucked away and no one other than us goes up there. However, as we're getting busier with the B&B, it's more likely that we'll have to lodge our family upstairs (especially during the high season) if they're here while paying guests are here at the same time. And since I was in the painting mood, and we had enough paint leftover, I rolled up my sleeves. This is how it turned out...
Kevin was making projections for the next year and decided bumping our baby fish by another 2,000 was a good idea to meet the demands we're anticipating. We're now up to 9,500!