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Sunday, September 30, 2007

Leases, Visas, Bikes and the Likes.


No I haven't abandoned my blog. I am lax indeed, I'll admit. Guilty by self incrimination. But please don't think for a moment that I've been doing nothing. I'll try to explain somewhat of the happenings since my last post nearly a month ago. It will not necessarily be in chronoligical order, rather however it comes into my mind and flows out my fingertips.

Leases

Just this rainy Monday morning I have received, re-read, and made a few what I hope are the final revisions to a "Contract of Lease" on a condo unit down the street from us here in Brentville (or more completely - Brentville International Village Barangay Mamplasan, Binan, Laguna, Philippines - but I prefer simply Brentville). 'Not happy with the one you're in?' you might ask. This new one is not for ourselves but for Dea's sister and brother-in-law Jeanne and Jerry who are coming this way. You see our closest family is a distant 18 miles away (Manila) so we're importing some more to live just down the street. And what I've found about dealing with brokers, leases, owners, subdivision associations, bankers and anyone else deciding to get involved, is that it's different here. I surly did not expect it to mirror previous experiences but ... well it is different. And, I have to say there are many friends who have helped a lot with advice and suggestions to help smooth the way. I think we're close, though rennovation on this place, which has been abandon for 5 years, has not yet begun. Hopefully this week. There's a whole lot more I could say about the process but this is the short version.

Here's a picture of the place.

Doesn't particularly look abandon for 5 years. That's because the Association recently repainted all of the unit exteriors.
Visas
And after having lived here over a year don't I have a visa? Well I do. And I'm glad of that. But Jeanne and Jerry will be in need of one for their stay here. They will enter the country with a standard visitors visa and then begin application for a SRRV - that is a Special Resident Retirement Visa. So I've been looking into that so they could be apprised of the necessary red tape busting documentation to bring along. Such as medical certificate showing them to be "not afflicted with any loathsome or contagious disease", a police clearance so they won't be adding to the resident criminal element, proof of at least a $1000 monthly pension, marriage certificate, and investment funds. The first four to be authenticated by the Philippine Embassy before coming.


It's all right here (at least the pretty pictures).

Might be worth looking into. Want me to send you one?


Bikes

To satiate my technical/mechanical bent and to enhance my bikeability, or just because I wanted to, I turned this pile...

... along with a few additional parts tires, handlebars, seat etc. into this....

I would have to say the most satisfying parts of the project were building and truing the wheels (my first time ever to do that), and the first ride on it. Hopefully there will be a bunch more satisfying rides.


On the first part, the wheelbuilding part, I started with two Mavic XC717 rims, 72 DT Swiss Competition spokes with nipples, and two Shimano Deore LX disc brake capable hubs, and a few pages of instructions (thank you Sheldon Brown! http://sheldonbrown.com/wheelbuild.html), a cheap truing attachment for my Park repair stand, and I was off!



The Front wheel before...




The front wheel during...




The rear wheel.

The Likes

The likes will have to come later. Promise not to take a month.

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