Construction Journal Entry Week of 1/16/22

1/17-22/22 I went up to Camp Serendipity for six days: Monday through Saturday.

I had a doctor's appointment before I left so I didn't arrive at Camp Serendipity until 4:30. There had been no new snow since I left, and the old snowshoe track around the hairpin turn was frozen hard. It was slippery and treacherous to walk on. I made three trips up to the cabin with just my boots bringing up my gear. I was happy to discover that the heater had been working. It was 65 degrees inside the cabin. I built a fire in the stove, had my dinner, and the day was done.

On Tuesday morning I was pleased again that the heater had worked all night and the cabin was warm when I got up. After practicing the piano, the temperature outside had gone up to 38 degrees. My plan was to take ashes outside and spread them on the trails so they wouldn't be so slippery but after spreading them up to the mixer, I realized that since the snow was so soft the ashes were unnecessary.

I continued on to the privy looking for wire screen for a project in Seattle and I was happy that I was able to find it. I took a roll of quarter inch mesh screen from there down to the truck and loaded it. I was able to walk the entire trail with just boots on without slipping or falling through. Down at the truck I got my scoop shovel and began shoveling off the concrete staircase. The snow was deep and stiff and heavy, so it was a lot of work. I got about half of the staircase shoveled before I quit for lunch. On my way back I brought the big tool bag up to the cabin. I was going to install the new heater and I needed those tools.

After lunch and a nap, I started working on the installation of the new Stiebel Eltron CON 200-2 heater that I had brought with me last week.

On Wednesday morning the temperature outside was 26 degrees. After practicing the piano, Robert called, and we caught each other up on our activities. Then I opened the electrical distribution panel and modified the wiring. My plan was to replace the dining room heater that had failed several years ago and use that wire to feed the new heater. As it happened that heater was on a wire by itself, but all of the Convectair heaters were connected together with a yellow pilot wire so that they could be controlled together. I didn't want the new heater to be connected with that pilot wire, so I disconnected the yellow wire in the dining room leg at the distribution panel.

After lunch and a nap, I finished shoveling the concrete staircase. When I got to the top, I was disappointed to find that the handrail rope had been chewed through at the top and the rope had parted. I think some animal was harvesting fiber from it but I'm not sure. The sun did not come out. The snow stayed pretty stiff so it was a pretty hard afternoon's work.

In the evening, Ellen called and told me that she had decided to take Friday off and the two of us would go snowshoeing on Friday. That meant I was going to leave for home on Thursday and come back the next day to spend one night in the cabin with Ellen. That was a wonderful plan.

On Thursday Dave called first thing in the morning and we had a nice conversation. Then I finished installing the new heater. I finished about noon and then went out and replaced the rope rail on the concrete staircase. I used the rope that had been part of my exerciser out on the front porch and decided that I was done lifting rocks for exercise. I now lift free weights instead. I had my lunch and then left for home at 1:30.

On Friday, Ellen and I drove to Leavenworth and had a great time snowshoeing all the snowshoe trails at the Icicle River Trails facility. When we finished, we went into town and Ellen bought two dinners to go from King Ludwig's restaurant. Back at the cabin, we had a great time enjoying the German food and relaxing. It was the first time Ellen had seen some of the changes I had made, and she liked them. She also came up with additional ideas for improving the place and we began working on a plan to implement them. She also did a considerable amount of cleaning. The new heater worked marvelously, so I did not build a fire at all while she was there.

On Saturday morning, we had our breakfasts, did some more tidying up, and left for home after a fun adventure.

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