the last cuts of a 20 year old diamond blade
Sunday, May 22 2022
location: 800 feet west of Woodworth Lake, Fulton County, NY
After I got up, I made myself a french press of coffee and ate a sandwich containing faux bacon, onions, lettuce, and surprisingly-shelf-stable-after-opening Hellmann's brand vegan mayonnaise. Then, once Gretchen was up, I played a little New York Times Spelling Bee with her remotely. But once I'd made it to genius in that game, I started today's big chore: finishing the tiling of the upstairs bathroom floor, which I'd begun back during the winter and hadn't been able to complete due to a lack of hot water. The untiled part of the floor included the closet, a swath along the bathtub, and a connecting swath between them inside the bathroom door, forming a large U-shape. Unfortunately, there was great deal of cutting required to finish this job, and it seemed my nearly 20-year-old tile saw didn't have much life left in it (at least not in its blade). As I cut the tile (it's an unusually thick kind), vibrations started to build up that would often cause the cut to veer off at the end in a sudden break. Since nearly all the cut ends of tile are hidden beneath molding or caulk, this wasn't too much of a problem. But the saw was also slower due to these problems, which was a real problem when having to make several cuts to get around some particularly tricky detail of the wall. All these tricky cuts, some of which had to be refined with secondary cuts, sent me up and down the stairs to where I had the wet saw set up (in the front yard) many dozens of times. It was exhausting, and I could feel myself reaching the edge of my sustainable output. Sometimes I'd stand up and my vision would solarize a bit and I'd feel weakness in my body. This might've been due to dehydration, as drinking water seemed to help. The day was, after all, another very hot one, and I spent much of it drenched in sweat. As I worked, I listened (as I had yesterday) exclusively to Q105, the local retard rock station, which began the day with a fairly interesting episode of Off the Record (an interview show) about Fleetwood Mac.
I worked without a break on this tiling project from about 10:00am to 3:40om, meaning it took nearly six hours to tile only about a third of a bathroom floor. Perhaps I'm not very good at it or I'm too detail-oriented. But the results are good, and I'm the only one with the skills to do it in our household.
After doing extensive cleanup (which involved making dams in the erosion gullies with surplus thinset), could finally crack open a well-deserved beer. I would've immediately gone down to the dock and done some more work on it, but now it was raining (and there was even some thunder). But then the rain stopped, and it was now so cool that I had to put a long-sleeve shirt if I wanted to be comfortable outside. I grabbed a wrench, a beer, and my Nikon camera and walked down to the lake, encouraging the dogs to follow (which they did, albeit slowly).
When I got to the lake, I heard a loon somewhere nearby and then saw a bald eagle lazily soaring overhead, something I managed to take a picture of. I made quick work of installing the support pipes at the end of the main length of the dock, making it solid and level. Then, as biting flies attacked me, I build a dry-stacked stone foundation on the shoreline for the other end of the run of dock to rest on. By then the dogs had arrived, and when Madyson the Beaver slapped her tail in aggravation, Ramona barked from the shore as though she'd caught a glimpse of the Loch Ness Monster.
Back at the cabin, I did some last-minute cleaning and packing and then was on the road homeward are around 8:00pm. As is customary when driving by myself either to or from the cabin, I cracked a beer at the Catskill exit. Gretchen smelled beer on me when she kissed me hello, meaning she's recovered her sense of smell. She tried to give me guff about drinking and driving, but there's no way I'm ever going to stop enjoying road beers. By now it was 10:00pm and I was sleepy and sore from the endless work I'd done at the cabin. So I took a xanax and climbed into bed.
A bald eagle soaring over Woodworth Lake.
Ramona poses near the newly-installed main length of the dock. Click to enlarge.
For linking purposes this article's URL is:feedback
previous | next