Sunday, March 7, 2010

Another Long Day

There are times when it seems the Delaney House will never get finished. And then, we make progress.

Tom spent more of today getting more neighbors to sign off on the plans for the Delaney and Chaney houses, with a great deal of success. So far, everyone he has spoken with has signed the plans stating that they approve of the project. So we're expecting that the City of Berkeley will respond positively as well - we have been told that, if the neighbors don't object, the City does not intervene.

Meanwhile, I spent most of the day, like yesterday, in the basement. We finished hooking up the hot water heater, and I finished the wiring in the back of the house. The hot water heater is installed: gas, vent, water lines. The outlets throughout the house are live (except there is no outlet in the bathroom - yet). The refrigerator is on and running.

But we didn't get everything done. The walls still have not been prepped for painting. The hot water heater, though installed, has a slow leak from the drain plug, which will have to be replaced.

But we're still moving forward. We'll probably do a couple nights there this week, then really push to get much of the work done next weekend.

We also spent some time today talking to the woman who owns the house next door. Christine is a character, smart and funny and a hard headed business woman. She has owned the house since 1957, when her third son was born there, and has other properties in Oakland. She's had her share of troubles, but has a positive outlook, and still does her own maintenance on her properties.

We talked about the neighborhood, and it always strikes me as interesting how people perceive 62nd Street. I think most people in Berkeley would think that 62nd Street, especially below Adeline, is a rough neighborhood - but the people we've met are all concerned about where they live, trying to keep their houses in good shape, and thrilled that we're taking on the most blighted house on the street.

I don't think that 62nd Street is the safest neighborhood in Berkeley, but we're really enjoying being part of it, and doing our bit to bring the area back. We're enjoying the work, and enjoying our neighbors. We're still not sorry we did this.

Now we just have to get it all done!

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