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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Our Pool Party! (Almost)!

It's summertime here in Uruguay! We have had some Hot, Hot days with beautiful warm nights. Being right by the water we haven't considered owning a pool in order to cool off. In fact in a mere 3 minute walk, I can be down at the beach and go swimming there. However, that fact hasn't dissuaded the many people in my neighborhood from buying a pool. For them it rounds out the perfect vacation package. This area is a vacation spot. I'm just glad I own a home, whereas several people in my neighborhood have their second home here!

Summer as well as the various holidays throughout the year makes my neighborhood come alive! Whole families with grandchildren in tow start greeting each other in the streets and parties and asados are the order of the day. I guess that watching children swim on your own property is easier and safer than going down to the beach although I do see them troop down to it. Also, the sand brought back can be a bother too. Most of our neighbors can afford to buy a pool. Wally and I on the other hand are dead broke but happy! Being retired on a fixed income means we try and keep all monthly expenses down and the maintenance and cost of running a pool would be too much out of pocket for us.

The pools and installation here in Uruguay have caught my eye. They are a bit different than what we are used to in the western part of the USA. I qualify that because I believe that on the East coast of the USA due to snow, in-ground pools are not always the choice. Large above ground vinyl pools are in many backyards there.

The temperate climate in Uruguay, coupled with the mostly sand earth makes in-ground installations of pools the norm here. I am so tempted just now to make a joke, "How many Uruguayos does it take to dig a hole?" Answer?   Okay, it's not a real joke but look at the two pictures. My neighbor had a pool installed and I couldn't help but watch (and smile)!

The house on the corner has had a pool for years but just this month two people bought pools on our street. The neighbor across the street shown in the above photos and now the house right next to me. So I've been able to get a closeup look at the subject of pool delivery and installation without leaving my house. The average pool for sale here seems to be a fiberglass one. They are propped up in front of pool shops like giant billboard signs. They seem no deeper than 6 feet.
While there are some concrete pools here most average people get the fiberglass ones. Conventional heating systems or now available (some newly introduced) solar heating units keep them warm. You can choose from a chemical or salt water system to keep them clean. Some expats I know have a salt water system, one which they love and it helps them keep away from harsh chemicals.

Now, with some amusement and yes some envy, I hereby bring you the account (through pictures) of how we found ourselves with a pool in our backyard.....for all of 15 minutes!

Our neighbors entrance to his backyard was too small to bring a giant pool through so the delivery crew carried it through ours! I must admit it was exciting to see a pool being delivered to our house!

We now know that a pool can fit into our backyard, it just squeezed through our gate! The whole delivery crew and pool, now where is the water hose? Can't we just leave it here?

I thought that our (still non-planted) raised bed planters would be difficult to get around but no!

Before reaching our neighbor Sergio (the rightful owner) the pool had to pass into another neighbors yard. They sent me (Denise) the non-Spanish speaker, to explain the situation (in Spanish) to Carlos and ask permission to temporary set the pool in his backyard, He understood me. Whew! Since Sergio is well known and liked, Carlos immediately said "Sí'. 

I can't help but wonder? Is this a ploy to sell pools???  "Here, let us show you exactly what a pool will look like in your landscape, we have one"

This is the other neighbor, Carlos looking at the pool in his yard. He has a large yard. He now knows that a pool can fit in his yard and what it would look like there if, he should ever decide to buy one himself! The last 3 photos show where the pool is going to end up in. Sergio's yard, as seen from my roof, snoopy aren't I?  Let's hope this pool fits!!!  The last photo shows why the pool had to come up my driveway and through my yard. It couldn't fit under the carport of Sergio's cute (second) home.

Well, at least I don't have to imagine what it would be like getting a pool delivered to my house. I've already experienced it. Until my ship comes in (money-wise) I'm afraid, I'll just have to settle for swimming in this and it doesn't cost a thing!

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