Day 7: Finishing touches

Today is our last day in Romania – our flight home is very early tomorrow morning.

It hasn’t been particularly warm over the last week and last night was no exception so the floor we laid yesterday had not completely set. Fortunately it was just about solid enough to walk on with wooden boards laid on top so this didn’t hold us up too much. We have progressed really well and, apart from allowing some time for everything to set, the house is very close to being habitable. Most of the work planned for today was optional extras, with the exception of fitting the front and two internal doors which was Richard’s priority.

I spent most of the morning cutting and attaching angled braces between the joists and diagonal beams supporting the roof to provide extra resilience. Meanwhile Nick and AJ added extra boarding into the loft space to reduce drafts and turn it into a really useful storage area. Simon continued plastering the internal walls, a job which will be finished by some local volunteers once we have left.

After our last lunch in the village hall, most of the team started work on rendering the external wall at the front of the house – this is not absolutely necessary but provides a nicer finish for painting. The local team will do the same to the other external walls at a later date.

The family have no running water in with their old or new houses. Having seen the amount of time and effort it takes them to bring barrels of water to the house, Nick offered to buy guttering and a water butt to collect rainwater for use on the crops etc. Therefore, for the last hour or so, we concentrated on attaching the guttering to the roof and building a raised platform for the water butt to stand on. This small project will make a huge difference to the family’s everyday lives and will almost certainly become a standard part of future house builds.