Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Tuesday morning

I'm sitting here at work on a Tuesday morning with no real duties to perform, except for cleaning my office and getting ready for an extended summer vacation. I work in a High School and the kids were released last Friday. However wonderful the summer break sounds I remember lots of long days during the school year, some of them 15 or 16 hours long. I earned the time off.

My lady has some tasks lined up for the summer, none too onerous or complicated, although the big one requires building a privacy fence around the back yard. The house we bought last summer has no fence around the yard and she wants one so that next spring we can install an in-ground pool. Before I get started with that fence, there are some preliminary tasks to complete, sort of cleaning up some half-finished stuff that I have hanging. The first job on the list is to get my boat welded. I took possession of my grandfathers boat during the Christmas season. It is a 12-foot aluminum john boat that the cajuns around here call a bateau (ba-toe'). My father had the boat leaning against his barn and I asked him what he was going to do with it. He told me it leaked and he was tired of mowing around it, so we loaded it in my pickup. I didn't realize it had belonged to my grandfather until I saw his initials in the bow.

Sure enough, my father showed me where the aluminum welds had cracked on the transom, from years of stress of the weight and thrust of outboard motors. There are a number of rivets that are loose and the boat just needed a little general maintenance to be ready for another twenty years of service.

The first thing I did was to drill out the loose rivets and remove the old rotted transom. The transoms are plywood in aluminum boats of that era. I went out and bought a sheet of marine plywood, cut out a new transom, fitted it, then coated it with four coats of marine varnish.

I found a fellow who can do the welding on the aluminum part of the transom, and getting that done is just a matter of putting the boat in the truck and carrying it to his shop during the business day, a task that is impossible while I am at school. I'll get that done this week. Then, next week, I'll have my elder son come over and we will re-assemble the boat, bucking new rivets into place and making the boat watertight again.

The rest of my summer projects? 1)Install and test three outdoor electrical outlets for the house. 2)Construct privacy fence around the backyard. 3)Purchase and install new countertop for the kitchen island. 4)Plan and install a couple of new shelves in the garage. 5) Secure hosting for a church website, and construct the webpage. That is the list right now. I'll have lots of implied tasks and lists of stuff to check off before it is over. Oh, and the last and most important. 6) Shooting. Lots of shooting.

Time to make my rounds. Today ain't over yet.

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