May 31st Asa and I woke up at 9 AM and after breakfast I, in my usual manner, wandered about trying to figure out what I was going to do today. Fortunately I had a team mate there to remind me of our project. Delighted, but slightly daunted by the lack of Man power I was reluctant but put on my work clothes and slowly got to work. Asa, clearly frustrated with my indecision was quick with direction and suggested we begin on the cross beams. After seeing she wasn’t horsing around I became more enthusiastic and fell back into my mental groove from the night before.
We spent some time determining the best way to level out the cross beams and unlike the night before our leveling technique seemed much more reasonable. The night previous we had strung a line from pole to pole and measured with the level in the center of the line to make sure they all extended from the core of the earth the same height. With the posts all well cemented into the ground Asa and I only had to attach one bracket to the post drop one end in and level the beam and measure the prescribed length. We’d then cut the beam, attach the second bracket and drop the whole beam in to it’s spot. By the time we got to the fourth beam we learned our posts weren’t quite square but aside from that we were pretty good at this stuff. Our last beam took less than 5 minutes from raw beam to cut, leveled, and set. Now we were at what I like to call a project point.
Project points, or end points, are steps along the way where I felt if we didn’t move past it wasn’t the end of the world and certainly not a waste of investment of time or money. At this particular project point I had a square, for the most part, frame in my yard that was highly versatile. From here I could have made a palapa, a patio cover, a square of hammocks with no roof, there were a lot of options and that made my happy. Asa on the other had wasn’t convinced. I’m really glad she was around, I felt much more productive with a foreman hanging around. Shortly after my giddy dance of completion Asa convinced me that the beams weren’t strong enough and needed more brackets and straps and that we should get the other wood to start work on the roof. We returned to Grant Lumber and then to Home Depot for the straps and made it home in time to get the new beams sealed and for the evening work crew to show up. In the mean time Asa and I enjoyed the hammocks.