weather dependent tasks
Tuesday, September 21 2004
The day was cool enough that we felt comfortable taking our dogs with us when we went to Spanish class this morning. We left them in the car (parked in the shade) during class, but afterwards we walked them along the wooded edge of the campus, past some sort of sewer pipe rescue training installation. Then we drove into Rosendale to eat tempeh reubens at the Rosendale Café, the only thing we ever eat there. On the way out of Rosendale we stopped briefly at the remains of a cement mine where a column of native stone had been left to hold up an enormous slab that in turn supported the whole of a hillside. Cold spring water filled the hollow that remained at the base of this column, and Eleanor and Sally dashed into it without even seeing the water. There were plenty of frogs (all green-skinned and yellow-eyed) lounging at the water's edge, sedate from the the chill of either the water or the shade. Two red fire department taps led off into the water; apparently this is an easier place for a fire engine to fill its tanks than Rondout Creek (which is on the other side of the road).
I continued patching various minor flaws in the exposed foundation wall of our house. I removed some wooden scaffolding that was supporting part of the trench wall so I could get to one of the cracks easier. The trench wall continued to hold, but I have my doubts how it would hold up in a soaking rain. The schedule of tasks yet to be completed on this major project includes covering the wall with asphalt and plastic, laying drain tile, and then filling the trench with gravel. All these tasks depend on the behavior of the weather. Right now I cannot paint asphalt on the wall because it is still damp from the downpours and trench wall mudslides that came with the remnants of Hurricane Ivan. So I'm forced to do little tasks such as trivial crack repairs that aren't really necessary with asphalt-and-plastic treatment. But if I wait too long to fill the trench, another storm could come through and cause further wall collapses along the length of the trench, causing further delays. The trench has to be definitely finished by the onset of hard frost, since I cannot risk exposing the exposed foundation footing to frost heave.
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