Hello there. Yes it has been awhile. Of course I’ve run out of excuses why I have not posted in such a long time and quite simply, one runs out of things to say on the SCR building blog when you stop building and begin living the life in the campo. Just finding good bread turns out to be an road trip and an all day affair, but nothing to write home about. Most importantly, I have moved from building to re-building and that I believe requires an entirely different blog under the Geneva rules of blogging. Maybe “My Adventure re-building things I’ve previously built blog”. That would be fun (for you) and definitely not so much for me. In any case, living in the SCR house has been quite wonderful and it helps that much of the landscaping has been completed. There are plants and flowers everywhere and now that I have my own Tru-Cut self propelled lawn mower, I have another love to talk about.
Earlier in the year, I boasted about an outdoor kitchen that I was hoping to build and located unremarkably -just outside my existing kitchen. You know, for all that outdoor cooking that everyone seems to want to do and what kind of a house would you have if you could not cook outside when in the tropics?
Of course a previous trip to Argentina inspired me to want, crave and lust over an Argentine Parilla (like the one in the photo)
which just happens to be an outdoor cooking thing with a hand crank that lifts your grill up or down depending on how you’re feeling about your meat or heat and why not just have one of those in the outdoor kitchen? If you are unfamiliar with an Argentine parilla, I defer to the Argentine Gaucho, who is the Argentine version of the American cowboy but who invented slow cooking in the outback of Argentina. It’s now a staple of any true blooded Argentinians life. Cooking over wood fired coals has transcended from home on the range to the art of cooking beef, sausages, goat or whole pigs in Bobby Flay’s parilla. After many telephone calls and afternoon drives to meet and possibly convince a welder to build something far more interesting and less profitable than an oil pipeline in my neck of the woods, my enthusiasm for the project was doused faster than a hot iron a cold water bath. I struck out three times before I simply gave in and went back to where I knew I could obtain a parilla on this planet and paid the price. I’ve learned my lessons, really, I have.
At the moment, I am waiting for another (the last) shipping container that will ever appear in front of the Villa. Unless it’s a container taking my dead body out of this house, I promise that it’s the last container that will be dropping any furniture or house related stuff here again. Ever. Really. I mean it. No, I mean it.
This fourth shipping container just so happens to have the aforementioned lawn mower which I look fondly upon like a vintage Ferrari, interestingly its bright red but it’s only a lawn mower you say?
I digress, the container has many things that will ultimately fill out the house, but most important is the parilla. I will be building the parilla within the next week and of course will post photos of the mess too.
For now, I submit for your perusal the outdoor kitchen photos that started in February and almost 10 months later its taken its shape nicely. Why so long you say? I could have built another small house in such a period of time? It’s the wood that is so hard to find in Panama. Trees here are not that big, They are skinny and tall which is nothing like the women here but clearly tall fat trees do not exist that you are allowed to cut down into beams.
The photos are over a period of 9 or 10 months. You can see the idea behind the outdoor kitchen was to make use of a wall that is supposed to look like it’s part of an old ruin. Of course we did not have an old ruin exactly in that exact spot so we re-created that look and of course married it to the new “great wall” that is opposite. The stairs leading up to the area are large pieces of flagstone that has similar characteristics of a slate-like material.
We’ve just starting on the bar area and will add the new rustic wood floor within the next few days. I will keep you posted.