Last September, we were visiting Somartin and doing lots of work there (see post – Somartin Permaculture Update – September 2018). One day we passed the church just up the hill from our Permaculture Center.  We got out to speak with one of the workers there, just by random and it was Nicusor. We asked him if he would like to come and look at our place, the barn in particular. The back side of the barn is, well as large as a barn. The barn was build in the 1930s and time has taken its toll. The outside protective layer on the backside has long fallen out and the cob (mud mix) that is holding the bricks together is missing to about 1/3 the depth of the bricks. Over the course of our 3-week visit, we started negotiating with Nicusor.


Natural Stone Tiles in Bathroom
Natural Stone Tiles in Bathroom done by Nicusor


We hired him for several individual projects, the first being to tile the bathroom floor and finish the bathroom walls in the Somartin house. He has since resurfaced/smoothed the concrete floors to ready them for putting wood flooring down. He is still in the process of fixing an interior wall in the horse stall part of the barn. Moisture for the animals has over time has allowed some of the wall to collapse. In April of this year, 2019, we flew Nicusor to our house in Leksand, Sweden, to tile a shower in our sauna room. Negotiations began in earnest to hire him full time.


Nicusor tiling our Leksand home sauna shower and floor
Nicusor tiling our Leksand home sauna shower and floor


Ten days after he finished the job and returned home, I flew to Somartin to again work on the house and land there. Nicusor and I measured old barn doors and the height of the barn among other chores. The next day we drove to Sibiu to a large home building supply company. We had pre-ordered seven pallets of bricks and there we picked out the wood and other supplies that would be delivered the next day.


Seven Pallets of Bricks being Unloaded
Seven Pallets of Bricks being Unloaded


One day while Nicusor and I were planting the garden I went into the house for a few moments. From the street out front I heard what was a sales truck driving by. Sometimes in the villages of Transylvania people would drive and with a PA system announce what they had to sell. I saw as the truck slowly drove by that they were selling chickens. Chickens and pigs and food for them were on our list. I grabbed Nicusor and out we went to buy our new chickens



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