Wooden Railings

Oops – Wood needs some adjustment here

This is why we are doing this

There you see it, wood railings all over

Rest of the Stairs

The Private Stairs

So what’s it like? These pictures should show it off nicely: The added stairs also mean that the terrace can get some immediate use for laundry

The Private Terrace

It’s time to figure out how to build our way up to the private terrace in the North-West room. We’ve decided to do it the simplest way possible. All wood steps fastened on both sides to the two walls. Exciting!

Floating stairs seems scary – but why not?

Look at that! Starting to resemble our 3D mockups now

Electrical time

In order to move the electrical boxes we were required to turn off the power leading into the yard. In order to turn off the power we needed a key to the power box. If you want to get the key, you have to pay the local government roughly 2000RMB for them to open the box, shut the power down and move the electrical boxes. This took 3 people a few hours to do, but while we oversaw the work we got a chance to capture photos of the yard from some unique angles.

Mr. Wood

This is an exciting part, the stairs are all starting to get installed now. They are all being made by hand out of wood — by one person. He doesn’t really speak mandarin, and works on his own ultra-slow schedule, but the stairs should be pretty good in the end.

His main tool

The entrance, partially fitted with the new stairs

Metal work

Just in time, the metal is all in place ready and waiting for some of the stairs that are being finished up as we eat lunch.


Not terribly exciting, but here are shots of the plumbing being installed directing waste into the well.

A glass dining room

It’s been decided– Rather than cover the entire roof with concrete slabs, as assumed earlier, 1/4 of the surface will be turned into glass! And here’s a series of photos showing the entire process:

Getting the wind engineer to inspect the work to be done.

Building the glass frame

Passing the glass up onto the roof – no problem

It’s only 9+12+9 glass.

Viewing into the dining room

Looking towards the view of the trees above. This should make for a pleasant dining room

Digging a hole

Time to build a well. Not quite the fun kind for getting drinking water or simply falling into. But watching our worker disappear into a 2m deep pit is something special. Along the way he discovered plenty of broken porcelain cups as well.