A miserable day, but the crew kept working.
The 17th day of construction — the beginning of week 5 — was a cold and nasty day, with rain coming and going throughout the afternoon and into the evening. I stayed inside, working on party invitations and other assorted paperwork. I feel as if I’m continuously trying to dig myself out from under a pile of paper.
This is my busy time of year for flying work — although that doesn’t necessarily mean I’ll fly. We had rain (and I flew) on Thursday and Friday, but the weekend was quite pleasant with only a vague threat of rain. I needed to do my laundry and I don’t like going to the laundromat on weekends, so I figured Monday would be the day. Unfortunately, with the weather so iffy, a trip down into town looked like a bad idea. It takes about 20 minutes to get home (where my helicopter now lives), and with actual conditions not matching what I was seeing on radar, I really had no reliable warning system. At least from home I could see the weather moving in and react quickly if I needed to.
So I stayed home for most of the day.
Outside, the guys kept working. They were all bundled up in sweatshirts and some of them even had hoods up under their hardhats. They climbed up onto the RV garage roof and worked on the metal sheeting around the south-facing windows up top.
The exterior walls of my RV garage, shop, and garages would get the same rolled insulation as the roof in that area. That meant the workers needed to follow the same basic procedure as they had for the roof. The big difference was that they’d also have to cut around the windows. And I had a lot of windows to cut around. Because they also had to put some sort of flashing beneath the roof and around the windows, they didn’t seem to make much progress before lunch. But they made up for that after lunch by finishing up those top windows and getting about 2/3 of the south-facing wall done.
Meanwhile, one of the two framing contractors I’d contacted came by for a second look at the building. The pair consists of a builder and her framing partner. She was having trouble understanding how the roof over my living space would comply with code. I didn’t have answers to her questions about that but referred her to the plans inspector who had signed off on the plans. She told me that she’d spoken to him and that the plans weren’t approved. This was news to me that got me busy with email after they left. (She was wrong; they had been approved.) We also discussed the “storage loft” area I’d requested over my hallway, pantry, utility room, and bedroom closet. I saw no reason for these areas to have 18-foot vaulted ceilings; why not use this space for something else?
By 3:30, it looked to me as if it wouldn’t rain enough to get a call to fly. I bundled up my laundry and Penny and headed down into town. I had a bunch of errands to run, including getting my hands on a pair of frost-free yard valves. My friend Bob had recommended installing one on the front and back of my building. We figured that when the plumber came for the stub outs, he could extend the trench enough for me to install the two valves. Angel had told me the plumber would arrive the next day.
I also needed to pick up the printed party invitations. And drop a few off with friends in town.
Did you ever have a day when you’re trying to run errands and get things done and nothing seems to work out? (My wasband used to complain about this happening to him all the time.) That’s the kind of afternoon I had.
First, the clueless copy desk person in Staples told me they hadn’t run my print job because I’d set up the file wrong. She invited me behind the counter to see for myself, but when she brought up the file, she immediately admitted that it was fine. So I had to wait for her to run it then. That took a good 20 minutes.
Next, at Lowes, I wasted time looking for someone to help me, only to discover that they didn’t have what I wanted. I also took a call from a co-worker who needed an extraordinary amount of hand-holding for a grown man. (Jeez, what is it with some men these days?) While we talked, I couldn’t continue shopping for the other few items I needed, thus wasting more time. 13 minutes, to be exact.
In Home Depot, a long search for what I needed wasted more time and came up empty.
I hurried back to the laundromat and threw my clothes in two dryers, pumped them each with 40 minutes worth of quarters and headed back out. I had enough time to buy more potting soil (for my third pallet planter) at Costco. At least that went smoothly. It was drizzling when I got out and, according to radar, a storm cell was moving in from the north. I had run out of time.
Half my clothes were still wet when I got home. I hung them on hangars all over the RV so they’d air dry. I texted back and forth with various pilot friends who, like me, were waiting for calls. I worried that if I flew and something happened to me, people cleaning up the detritus of my life would look at the clothes all over my RV and think I was a slob.
Nick, whose helicopter is based right down the hill from my place, started up and took off around 8 PM. My call came at 9 PM, which was too late to launch. It was a request to dry 3 orchards first thing in the morning.
What does this have to do with construction on my new home? Very little. But it does explain why I don’t have any good in-progress photos. Just this, which I shot on my way home.
The time-lapse is also a bit disappointing, since they did all their work on the side of the building that doesn’t face the camera. Sorry!