Such progress was made yesterday: made my heart sing. The boys (Andy and his cousin Casey) finished up the painting of the top deck and Andy helped me get everything back in place. Today I need to find some gardenias (or maybe meyers lime trees as Judy suggested) to put in the large planters. The first gardenias just didn't thrive and were slowly passing away so I yanked them. I think they weren't that healthy to start with.
Then they started pressure washing the side deck. The one where everyone comes through. Unfortunately the pressure washer that my brother loaned stopped working. So after some hand scraping and prep work I made a call and found a power washer to rent. This was just about lunch time, and it was hot out so we jumped in the car and went to...Dairy Queen. I couldn't resist the temptation to feed two hungry, hot college kids a good greasy lunch. I'm glad I didn't spend time making some delicious home made spread. It would have not made these boys any more happier than a greasy burger and fries.
The pressure washer rented, they made great progress and got the whole side deck nicely stripped. The lower deck got prepped before Casey had to leave. Andy worked hard from then until 10 PM to finish power washing the paint off the lower deck. While they were doing this I ran to Daly's to get stain for putting on these decks. I had found an old can in the shed that looked like it's what they used before. I took it to Daly's and asked them to mix a really good stain that won't wear off but looks same color. So we'll see what we get and how well it lasts. Having a deck on the main entry to the house is hard to keep looking good. But I can't wait to have it all spiffy with the planter put back in place.
Meanwhile, the tile guy came to finish his work. He got started when we were out picking up the power washer and unfortunately when I looked to see what he had done he had put the cut out for the heater in the wrong spot. Living in a small house with few flat walls (due to gables and windows and such) one has to plan very carefully for necessary things. Like towel racks. Where he had put the heater was in the middle of the wall where a towel rack hangs. Would have meant a towel hanging smack in front of the heater. So, as sad as I was to loose progress on the tiling for a day, it'll be worth it in the end. He's supposed to come back today to finish.
He's a very nice man. The tiler. We had a great conversation and I was encouraged by the lack of ring on his finger. And his handyman skills, of course. But as we were talking about the project he mentioned that "we took our dog to California." And "we love the lake." etc. So I don't think there's anything there. But...what I figured out, is a good conversationalist is very attractive. And someone who can fix things, of course.
I asked what had happened to the guy who was supposed to finish up while he was on vacation. The guy who went missing and stalled my project. He said the guy had been sober for years but unfortunately went on a bender that week. He felt bad. He had to let him go and make sure he was in treatment (where he is now). Ah yes. I'm reminded of those benders that leave things unfinished. Like marriages and such. But I noticed this time I could hear this story and not get all worked up internally about it. I felt compassion for the guy. Not anger so much. And it didn't stir up any feelings on panic or anxiety, which hearing stories of drinking problems often does. So I think that's progress.
Well, if you've made it through this yawn of a blog I congratulate you. I'm out to do a little final power washing before we have to return the equipment. Andy is going with friends to Bite of Seattle today and then a concert tonight. I'm paying him $10 an hour and he is working hard to earn it. I was thinking how wonderful it is to have a kid that earns his money. I'm not sure what we did right but he is grateful to have the work this summer and expects to pay for his gas and entertainment. He's got a job digging ditches for another kid's father on Monday. I am guessing there are a lot of parent's as employers this summer as most kids are having trouble finding jobs. The bulk of them were taken before summer started by adults with families who have had to find other employment. I would rather be paying Andy to do some things that I've needed done around here than him taking a job that a family needs. Besides, he's got the paying job at the radio station when he starts back to school so that takes some of the pressure off.
Another thing I have to do today is find my camera. It's gone missing in action so no pictures of the job progress. Darn.
Enjoy the Saturday.