Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hammertime

We were out on the town last night, guzzling Cristal and high-fiving ourselves over the way we'd stuck it to The Man (see previous post), when we returned home to find that gas pipe-laying operations had moved off the street in front of the house and into the pedestrian andador that runs along side it. No one had mentioned this to us. Also, they had ditched the jackhammer and returned to the method of the Aztecs: sledgehammers and pick-axes. Here's the view from our roof this morning at 3:50 AM:

We've written before about the city's elaborately handcrafted sidewalks. The way these are un-crafted is that one guy repeatedly bashes one of the paving stones with a sledgehammer, cracking away the seal that connects it to the others. Artisan #2 then pick-axes the thing into a pile of gravel, while a third, possibly apprentice sidewalk-craftsman, uses an eight-foot metal spike to breakup the underlying sand and sediment which a fourth worker, generally the boss's nephew, shovels away, leaving a narrow, open trench under the argyle-patterned stonework. This is as loud and slow-moving as it sounds, though it can be made even more torturously annoying by throwing a banda-music-playing mobile phone into the mix, like the one the dildo with the sledgehamer was carrying.

In the above photo, the man on the left is standing directly outside our ground-floor bedroom window, probably seven feet from our pillow.  Also, the square he's working on is as far as they got this morning.  So either the gas line ends there, or they'll be starting on the next square sometime around midnight tonight.  Remember, this is being done at night so as to not disrupt traffic.   In five years in this house, we have never seen a car driving down the pedestrian andador, but that doesn't mean it couldn't happen.  In fact, we're thinking of parking ours up against the bedroom window tonight.

If you live in the area, the Maxigas emergency number is 01 800 909 9999.  Dial early and often.

1 comment:

Crazy Rita said...

Working at night makes perfect sense to me. Can you just imagine the panic if the general population in Mexico were to see men walking around with jackhammers, pick-axes, and sledgehammers? Plus, you live in the land of noisemakers. In fact, I am having trouble sleeping in Texas because it is TOO quiet. Ahh, gone are the days when I was lulled to sleep by the neighbors off-key, earsplitting, window pane rattling karaoke parties.