Friday, June 17, 2022

Dead water

I was struck by all the vehicles parked outside the walls of this medieval city in Provence called Aigues-Mortes, which literally means "dead (or stagnant) water." This is not a museum but an actual town where people live and work. It is also, of course, a tourist destination. We just did a drive-by on our way down the Mediterranean coast.

Aigues-Mortes is surrounded on all four sides by a defensive wall. Digitized color slide, 1989.

We had some major movement on the deck renovation front yesterday: Ken fired the contractor. We decided we could wait no more. We've been very patient for the last year and a half. I don't want to spend a third summer without full use of the deck. Moving the furniture up and down stairs is no fun. Much of what is normally on the deck has been stored in our garage (along with everything else in the free world) for the past eighteen months. We're both tired of it.

So, once he had confirmed with the bank that our check had indeed expired and they would not honor it, Ken called the contractor (his wife) and said we had changed our minds about the project. She was not happy. So be it.

I power-washed the deck tiles yesterday morning (that hadn't been done in the last two seasons in anticipation of the demolition and they were awful looking) and moved the table, chairs, umbrella, some potted plants, and a storage unit out. It's a big relief to have the deck back, and clean, and not have the daily stress of wondering when someone might show up to do the work. What if they did the demolition and then left us for weeks or more before finishing the job? I shudder to think.

We have a couple of leads for other contractors thanks to friends and neighbors, so we'll place a call in the near future and see if someone can schedule us for the work to be done in the fall or next spring.

9 comments:

  1. I hope you soon make progress on the deck, but glad you’ve made it a pleasant spot again in the meantime. I wonder if that parking area has been moved since 1989 to make the outer walls more photo friendly.

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    1. 2016 Google Streetview seems to show that those areas are grass, now ... there is parking just outside the walls on the outside of the other side of the town walls, where it's also a busy commercial area, so it doesn't look as disappointing :) I had to check!

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  2. Laughable that after no action for so long and you calling to cancel, the contractor was disgruntled. Good for you for doing that.

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    1. I totally agree, sillygirl! That must have been a very satisfying call for you.

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  3. I can see at least three Renault 5's in the picture. I had three of them myself over the years. They were a bit basic and the sound made by the engine reminded me of my sewing machine. You rarely see any nowadays, all rusted to bits probably!

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  4. Aigues-Mortes is lovely. Fingers crossed for your new deck to happen asap.

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  5. I hope you can find a new contractor and getting that deck moving along!

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  6. My daughter and I visited Aigues-Mortes in 2001 when she was spending her junior year in Avignon. We were denied entrance on the main entrance, and my daughter suggested we park and walk in. I, however, noticed there was a paved road going around the walled city an said the inhabitants and shopkeepers had to be able to enter somewhere so I followed the road and on the opposite side saw no gate, nor a gatekeeper, so I entered. We always have rented very small cars in France, but even so, I drove down one very narrow street that just kept getting even smaller. YIKES! I had to back out and try a different street! Next time I will park and walk. Much easier!

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  7. Good luck. Around these parts contractors cannot be found for love or money.

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