Monday, May 19, 2008

The Fortress of Solitude

Our next-door neighbor is just over 80 years old, and a little on the flaky side. A few years ago, he had his house built by the best builder in Aguas Buenas, and it was beautiful. Since then, he's been systematically ruining the place. He's forever putting up new additions and generally destroying the architectural features that made this a lovely house.

We call it the fortress of solitude because he seems to be barricading himself in. He had the wrought-iron gate in front of the house heightened from 5' to 8', presumably to keep out intruders. Of course, it's trivial to simply go around the gate, but that doesn't seem to bother him. He also added wrought-iron bars over all the windows. Pre-made fencing was too expensive, so he rolled his own from posts and barbed wire. Very pretty.

For the last week, he's been walling in what was once the most beautiful outdoor staircase in the neighborhood. Now, all you can see is a vast cinder-block wall. When he had floor tile installed in a new room, he saved money by butting the tiles against each other, thus eliminating the need for grout. Of course, it looks like crap.

The place now look more like a prison camp than the beautiful house it was.