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Our neighbor, Toto, has just built a new guest house and put some really nice decals on the walls. It’s a nice way to add decoration when you don’t want to use up a lot of space. When I asked where he got his decals, he offered to get me the contact information. A couple of days later, he came over with a big roll of paper. It was a wall-sized decal of a tree and birds, and another of a branch with more birds!

At the end of last week, I consulted with Fernando, our caretaker, about the wall I wanted to put the decal on. He recommended painting it with enamel first, so he did. We ran the fans for about 14 hours to help it dry and diminish the smell. Today the wall was ready. I started at the top of the baseboard molding and worked my way up the tree, sticking on the picture and peeling back the base layer of paper. As I don’t have six arms, I recruited some help from Carlos when he wasn’t out running errands, and we were able to get all the branches stuck to the wall.

I spent most of the afternoon burnishing the decal in hopes of being able to peel it off easily. This is a large decal, and I went slowly in removing the top layer. Every now and then I’d find a piece that wouldn’t stick properly to the wall, so I used a paintbrush and some white glue and water to glue down the gaps. It took a while to get all the layers peeled off. When the decal was up, I could add some of the birds that came with it. The end result is lovely, and I even found a little wooden bird to hang in the middle.