October 22nd, 2009


Sink, Swim, or Skate?

Yesterday, we only got 3/4" of rain, judging by the amount of water in the wild cats' food pan, slowly, barely above a mist. When dug, the hole was dry after the top few feet, which allowed the water to be absorbed as it fell, so the footers and one drain tile now dress the inside of the hole. It took two cement trucks to pour enough to do the job, due to a miscalculation of the volume needed. Today, weather permitting, we were to get walls.

We have footers with rebar sticking up. The documentation my brother asked for from "before" to "after" is progressing even though I can't see what I'm doing. I started the second tape with the cement work.

But there's standing water in the hole. It is raining steadily, even though not heavily, and has been most of the night.

Yesterday, when I exited the house with the new tape in, the cement closest to the trailer had sprouted initials: LB (heart symbol) BY

"Who's making eternal love in my subbasement?"

Levi (Will Yoder's helper, another unbearded Amish man) hearts Barbara (Yount, if I remember right,) was drawn into the cement... first in initials, then in first names with a date, by their American driver. I got the second, expanded version partially on tape.

"Which one is Levi?" I asked. (I'm pretty sure that innocent question led to the expanded version.)

Will kept his head bent to the concrete in the corner he was using a 2 x 4 chunk of board he'd cut to the perfect length to level the cement top for the rough pass. CW and I both thought he was the one... The American driver had the smoother and was dressing the results.

I watched the driver as he drew out the names with the tip of something that looked a lot like a caulking gun, repeatedly misspelling Barbara and wiping it with the smoother until he had it right. Levi, hat off, back to him, seemed as if his ears were red as he studiously ignored the conversation.

Nodding to the guy up on top policing the area, he said, "He is."

"He's not saying much."

"Wait until he gets in the truck on the way home. He'll have plenty to say then." But, of course, I won't be there to hear it.

So, still board while waiting for the second cement truck to show up, Will finally got into the conversation.

"So, do you have a girlfriend?"


"You'll need to be getting a courting horse soon, then."

"I already have a horse and buggy."

"But not a fancy horse with white legs?"

"Girls take up too much time and are trouble."

He's cute, too, so I imagine he gets chased a lot.

It was pretty funny.
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Cave Ins

The narrow strip of earth between the trailer and the hole has sloughed off into the hole all along its length, covering the footers and rebar on that side. The side nearest the door has caved in partially, not as badly, but the hole is now a real mess. The footers are all under water.

I called the contractor and told him. He says they'll have to come dig a trench (which he has to do anyway to lay the drain tile) to let the water out. And remove the extra dirt tangled up in rebar how? If the footers had been done Tuesday instead of wasting that good warm, sunny day, the walls would have protected some of it, perhaps. (Or would they have been caved in?) Yikes! I don't know.
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    Fragile - Sting and Julio Iglesias
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