Construction Journal Entry Week of 10/22/23

10/23-27/23 I went up to Camp Serendipity for five days: Monday through Friday.

I arrived at noon and had a little trouble backing into the hairpin turn. I ran up against a big rock. I got straightened up and backed in correctly. Then I unloaded my gear in one trip except for a sack of mortar mix. I hoisted the flag then had my lunch. Then I went back down with the wheelbarrow to get the sack of mortar mix and brought it up to the cabin.

Back down at the truck, I used a couple hammers and crowbars to straighten up the leaf spring that had been pushed aside by the rock. It went back in place with no problem.

I skipped my nap and went right to work on the wall. Last week, I harvested two stones I had had my eye on for quite a while for use as lintels over the utility hole in the wall. One was a little too big for me to handle so I had rigged up a come-along. I left the stone suspended up there because I still needed to install a couple stones for the abutments.

Next, I washed the second stone thinking I was going to choose between them but then it occurred to me that they were thin enough and flat enough that I could put both of them in in tandem. I was happy that I would be able to double the lintel strength by using both stones.

On Tuesday morning I practiced the piano and then went out to work on the abutment stones. I found a perfect stone for the right-hand side that fit exactly right. I had a big thin stone that I intended to use on the left side, but it needed to be cut. I used the Bosch Bulldog to score two lines where the stone needed to be cut and when I hit the stone with a big hammer after the scoring it broke completely differently from my plan. But as it turned out one of the pieces ended up being just right so I had my abutment stone by using the scrap.

Next, I mixed a batch of mortar and mortared in the two abutment stones. The one on the right was so heavy I rigged up a second come-along from a chain around a projecting wall log and used that to lift up the abutment stone so I could mortar it in place.

After taking a break for lunch and a nap, I mixed up another batch of mortar and mortared in the spaces around the insides of the two lintel stones in their final place. I was very happy to get that done. Since it was likely to freeze during the night, I rigged up a trouble light inside the utility hole and covered the new work with a double layer of plastic. I was pretty sure that would protect against freezing for 48 hours. Since a snowstorm was due, I brought all the tools inside. Then I went down to the truck to get my Sorrel boots, a warm jacket, and my scoop and brought them up to the cabin.

On Wednesday morning it was 30 degrees and raining. I practiced the piano and then Robert called. We had a great conversation, and he gave me some good advice. I listened to the radio for a while and then the rain stopped at midday. I began preparing to go to the meeting at Bartholomew's in the afternoon. I cut two frozen pies I had brought for that purpose and then had my lunch and a nap.

I walked to the meeting in the daylight but, afterwards I walked back to the cabin in the pitch dark with the help of a small headlamp.

On Thursday I practiced the piano and then went out into the woods and fertilized all the Sequoia trees and a couple of cedar trees. After lunch and a nap, I got Dr. Dick's rebar cutter/bender out and made four rebar anchors that I will mortar into the front wall so that I can anchor the come-alongs that I'll use as the wall grows. I also took a picture of the wall after 40 batches.

On Friday morning I woke up to a skiff of snow on the ground and in the trees. I practiced the piano and then went out and loaded 11 water jugs into the truck. I left for home at 12:40 after a very eventful week. Winter has finally arrived.

Go to Next Journal Entry
Previous Journal Entry

Index to all Journal Entries
Go To Home Page

©2023 Paul R. Martin, All rights reserved.