Monday, March 28, 2011

Hear Ye!, hear ye.

The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones;
We have had quite a farming week, and also a tough personal week and I managed to help a neighbor which was fun and rewarding. Cindy learned how to drive a large farm tractor, as luckily she had a really great teacher.
O.K., so where are we? I’ve been finishing the electrical in the kitchen, throwing plaster on the walls, building the kitchen cabinets, and also keeping up with the grounds keeping. Cindy has as always kept the books, taught us French, refinished furniture and tackled the garden. Caleigh has had the least enviable job of being a fourteen year old girl, not that she has been diabolical, but she is surrounded by girls who are, and what do you have? Cat fights on Crack.
Where to start? The kitchen is schedule wise our priority, Caleigh is our priority in terms of life but we’ll go in ascending order. The kitchen is progressing, we bought our cabinets from this custom fabricator the guys name is IKEA, Swedish dude, high end stuff. I will install all the cabinets and then Cindy and I will apply a glaze or something that will soften the one off nature of the cabinetry. The electrical has had the most difficult prep work finished, our electrician will return this Thursday to start wiring the main panel, and start setting up the circuit breakers in the kitchen. The plaster finish on the walls have been kind of a female dog, there was a coat of oil-lead (hybrid decoration?) paint that would not allow the plaster to adhere, so after popping off the plaster bubbles from a week before I took the time to remove the existing paint off the walls. This then allowed me to reapply my custom tinted colored plaster for the second time, so rewarding. Our second mason crew will arrive tomorrow to install the stone arch carved by the first mason. That will leave me with the task of installing the wooden arched window, and filling the remaining empty space with stone. That would be the space without the glass thingy covering it.
Cindy has been refinishing a piece of furniture that I had been pretty vocal about leaving it in Topanga for the termites. When I saw it a couple days later, I laughed, it looked incredible and I realized that I would be the one rebuilding the furniture, but I wouldn’t be the one refinishing it. She also decided to risk it and try driving the tractor, as I was going to cut down a tree beside the house it would be more prudent to have someone in the tractor supplying some tension to the tree for direction, and when I think of tension I think of….anyway Cindy climbed in and after a three minute tutorial off she went. I had earlier climbed up the tree as far as I could, two feet, then went into the house and got an eight foot step ladder and managed another ten feet from that. With the rope tied around the highest part of the trunk, and around my neck in case I fell, I started back down, you always have to think safety after a six pack of wine. Cindy had the tractor running and I got the chainsaw running, so I started with a V cut on the face of the tree in the direction of the fall, and the chainsaw died….I shit you not, so I’m pulling on the starting rope twenty times really quickly with visions of the tree hitting the aforementioned kitchen a tree branch throw away. Crap it’s out of gas, so I run to the gas can a convenient thirty meters away and fill the two cycle chainsaw with straight gas. (It requires a 3 percent blend of oil) I run back and manage to get it restarted and finish the V cut, now the only thing I need is for Cindy to start inching the tractor forward while I cut the back of the tree to release the stored energy of the V cut in front, which she does flawlessly. The tree falls in the perfect location and this exercise in stupidity comes to a favorable end.
Caleigh has made the teenage mistake of having one of her girlfriends ex boyfriends be hers. I won’t even go into the myriad of events that happened, Caleigh made a couple mistakes, all of which were jumped on like a Salem Witch trial on Meth. I guess the part that depressed me was how a girl that was her friend could jump on the bandwagon and betray her so deeply, tell half lies that would shame Cindy and I just in order for, this kid to escape detection. Caleigh handled it with aplomb, and I think she sees the end result in a constructive manner; she at least has a friend that Cindy and I both like he’s a goofy kind of kid. He taught Caleigh how to ride a quad and a dirt bike, I would have preferred to be the one teaching her, but at least it was by someone that seems to get her and cares for her deeply. (Parental guidance required)
The good deed was this morning, I walked outside and peered around the corner of the barn and spied a van stuck on the rural side road that borders our land and some vines, it was an acquaintance of ours who had purchased 3 acres of vines and was often seen pruning his vines ( stop it!) Cindy and I had met him a few times and so I went into the barn and started up the tractor and drove to where he was mired, after a quick strategy meeting in sign and Braille we decided I reverse the tractor down the road pulling him, a little rope trick and a quick couple knot tricks and away we go. It was fun helping someone we had watched pruning his vine till sundown earlier in the winter. As he was getting ready to drive off he told me an old French saying, “A good deed is how most friendships start” I drove the tractor repeating his saying, it warmed me as I drove through the rain to the barn.
Well sleep time, dawn comes early on this here farm, you all come back now, you hear?

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