Painted Patio

I love to see these big trucks in action.  It doesn’t happen very often though.  This is the first time I’ve seen them unloading drywall.

The painter, who had said he would do the job on Monday, finally painted the patio on Thursday. I suppose he was busy at other houses. We did not go out there for fear it might not be dry.

That was the only change we saw today. There is just not that much more to be done.

I noticed this frog on the way out the driveway to the car.  The picture is not in focus.  The frog is gone, but its imprint is still there. It reminds me of the hollows made in the ash from Mount Vesuvius in Pompei.



The Tile Is Going Down

There was an additional truck in front of the house this morning and we could see a man in the garage as we turned into the cul-de-sac.

He was mixing mortar with a drill mixer.

This was my first view of tile as we walked into the house. The Russian was working along the big wall.  He looked up and smiled, and then continued his work. I was very disappointed to see the color of the tiles against the color of the walls. Even though they are called “Light Gray”, they looked very brown to me.  I did not like the effect at all.  The samples in the design center looked good together.  I chose the light gray because the tile I liked better was too brown in the design center.  But, it was very gray in the house we looked at yesterday.  I was upset, but it is too late now.  I’m just going to have to get over it and used to it.

This man was busy in the dining room.  I noticed that small stacks of tile were leaning against the walls all about the house. We stood and watched for a while; progress was fast with those large tiles.

The Russian was also making good progress.

The dining room man came into the little hall leading to the garage and cut a piece of tile.  It was just like a glass cutter:  he scored the tile and then broke it along the score. I was impressed with the work table.

We encountered the mortar mixer as we were heading back out.  He set his bucket of mortar on a small dolly and rolled it the rest of the way in.

The Russian was struggling with that funny little wall that defines one corner of the dining room.  He was on the foyer/family room side so we decided to walk around to the front door to watch him.

He was holding the tile over the space planning his cuts.

I noted the lines on the tile.

It did not work out so well and he had to start over with a fresh tile.  Andy decided we should not look over his shoulder while he was struggling, so we moved on. The man in the dining room had his tiles on a dolly that he could wheel along with him as he moved along the floor.

Then he was getting fancy with the mud.

Then he was making squiggly mud.

We walked around the house outside and came in the bedroom door to find a third tile setter in the master bath. I noticed that he did not use nearly as much mortar as the man in the dining room.

We watched for a while and then moved on to the sliding door into the family room.  The Russian was still struggling with that notched wall.

We stopped in Publix for a few things and went back home.  Andy kept trying to cheer me up, saying he thought the tile looked great, but I wasn’t having any of it. I know that once we move in and have furniture and rugs in place, it won’t be very noticeable.  But, I also know that it isn’t just right.

We returned to the house around five o’clock.  The Russian said it was alright to walk on the tiles, but the other man said not to.  So, I watched through the parlor window. He had a marvelous wave of mud along his work border. That is the white window sill at the bottom of the picture.

I took a picture of the dining room.  It doesn’t look so bad.

The man in the master bedroom was almost to the back wall.

I zoomed to the bathroom. Even though most of the tiles look rectangular in these pictures, they are all square.


We Have Walls

A few years ago, on the Alaska trip, we stopped in Vancouver, BC and I bought a small First Nations print of a fish, bear, bird, etc. superimposed on each other.  A common motif for a souvenir. Andy looked at it and asked, “What are you going to do with that?” My pitiful reply was, “One day I will have a wall”.

Well, folks, that day has arrived. Thanks to the work of the drywall crew today, we have a house full of walls.  There are not enough walls though.  The dining room has only one usable wall.  The family room has one big wall that will be the place for the t.v.  I wanted a lot of windows, but they sure use up a lot of wall space!

The first thing I saw when I walked into the house this morning was this beautiful purple drywall (or Sheetrock, as my father called it) leaning against the dining room wall. It is the water-resistant stuff for the bathrooms.  I LOVE that color!  Too bad it is going to be covered up.

The drywall crew was just getting started.  The first sheet of wall went up in the master bedroom closet.

They worked their way all around the house, putting up the top half of the walls. That was the stilts-required portion.

Just look at that color in the shower stall! He is cutting out the window after the sheet was installed.

He cut it out in sections so he would have something to grab.

These two are working on the top half of our bedroom.

They had leaned the stack against the family room wall.  I like this photo because it includes the entire five-man team.

There was a request for more of this guy.

The upper wall of the garage was tricky in the alcove for the heating and cooling system.

I loved watching this guy cutting the arches in the foyer and dining room. There was some metal trim there to guide his saw.  He is not old and gray; that is gypsum dust in his hair.

And, voila!  There’s an arch.

The top of all the walls was done about lunch time.  Rather than miss any of the action, I proposed we run out to Subway for lunch. When we got back, the crew was eating their lunch. They were all on the phone.

We took our folding chairs from the back seat of the car and set them up out back, in the lanai. That way, we could sit and rest between photographing and supervising.

I actually did do a wee bit of supervising today.  I noticed them pulling wires through the drywall on the large family room wall.  Those wires were for the vanity lights in the adjacent bathroom.  No one spoke English, but I managed to get my point across and they changed the wires.  I understand how they made the mistake.  The electrician had coiled the wires on the family-room side of the board.

It was very quiet inside after lunch.  I got up from my chair and peeked inside. Siesta! There are four sacked-out workers in this picture.  You can barely see the one outside the front door. They were awakened at 2 o’clock to resume work.

I have to tell you, from experience, that is was probably 110 degrees in the port-o-potty today.  Maybe more. It didn’t smell very good either.

The workers brought a microwave to heat up their lunches.

The family-room wall is done. No stilts were required in the afternoon.

They used the wall to lean the boards against while they measured and cut. Andy said the bearded one is the boss; he told everyone else what to do.  I didn’t see much of him as he was working in small spaces where it was impossible to get many pictures.

It’s a beautiful shower stall already.

Here, the breakfast nook is finished.

I got a big kick out of these two attaching drywall to the top of the door opening.  They walked their buckets sideways in unison as they worked their way along the door. Hip action again.

This was my favorite part of the day.  The kitchen counter. It will hold the kitchen sink and have the dishwasher underneath.

The measurer/cutter held the drywall in position and pressed it against the curve as the one with the power screw drive tacked it down.

Then the singing drywall hanger trimmed off the excess to counter level.  As he cut, the upper portion went back to straight.

Then he finished tacking it down.

Next, is the demonstration of how good the measurer/cutter is.  He carried in a sheet of the proper length for the back side of the counter, that will form the back side of the cabinets and drawers.

He held the sheet in front of the counter and peered over the top to line up with the plumbing while cutting holes.

Look at that perfect fit, not a large gaping hole for all four pipes like I would have done but nice neat holes, just the right size.

Then, they pulled the wiring through and screwed that sheet into place.

It was really hard to get a good picture of this guy; he worked in the bathroom and closets where I could barely see him.  Here, he was waiting for his measurer/cutter to return with the next piece.  I coaxed him to smile for me.

This was his measurer/cutter.  This was near the end of the day when he was carrying scraps out to the dumpster.  He was also a good-looking man. Too bad I didn’t get more pictures of him.

This may have been the last piece to go up, at least it was the last piece in our bedroom.

This picture is for Dave Ranlet.  Andy said Dave will remember their professor who advised his students.  (Something like) “When you visit a company, check out their dumpster.  If it is bigger than (what Dave?), they are making junk.” What was his name?  What did he say?

Our boys were not making junk today.  I was very impressed with the speed, but more so with the care they took to fit every piece as neatly and tightly as they could.  We left at six in the evening and they were still working.

Andy observed that the crew does a good job for everyone rather than do shoddy work and gypsum.