This past weekend was full of everything.  Sort of.  I finished replacing the old fence (Huzzah!) but decided to keep going (meh).  Fall finally arrived so I was never in danger of heatstroke so there’s that.  Perhaps more details are in order.  Why not?  

We had a really odd thing happen on Thursday when a water main broke.  This was in important one – the one right after the water treatment plant so everybody in town literally lost their water pressure.  We were informed of it by an automated phone call at 5:45 am.  We got up and showered before all the water drained away by the other citizens showering and then got another automated call informing us that the schools would be closed because of the water thing.

Erin had been scheduled to go to a student council thing in another town that day and so was busy on the phone rearranging things with the other officers and the teacher that handles such things.  There was a lot going on and when Mel kept standing in Erin’s bedroom door demanding to know a status, Erin smarted off to her about leaving her alone.  She was immediately grounded for the weekend.

And that’s how I ended up with a fence-building partner on Saturday.  That was a complex build-up to the story but that’s how life is with a teenager in the house.  Especially one as active as Erin.  But she made maximum use of her enforced vacation and helped me build the fence and we successfully replaced all the remaining old dilapidated stuff with brand new wood.  It was a banner day.  We did this until about 1:00 at which point I had to release her so she could go work on college applications so I put the final touches on by myself. 

I then went inside to watch Arkansas play Alabama.  Evan had been updating us all week on the football frenzy that had developed in Fayetteville.  The students had started getting in line at the stadium about Tuesday and a tent city soon developed along Stadium Drive that went south all the way to the edge of campus.  Evan and his buddies set up a tent somewhere in the middle and camped there in shifts from Wednesday until game day.  They all had tickets but apparently the student section is general admission and they all just wanted to do it for the fun of it anyway.  The media got hold of the event and it was covered pretty well.  Also, the athletic department got in on the public relations extravaganza and so the quarterback and coach were seen passing out free pizza to the students in line.  Evan said that over time he was fed Chick-Fil-A sandwiches and something else in addition to the Pizza.  He had a grand time and with all that slack time, he apparently got lots of studying done.

He and his friends also painted their bodies up to maximize their chances of getting on TV.  I thought I saw his friend which meant that my eyeball was only two kids away from Evan but they are never on screen for more than a fraction of a second so I didn’t see Evan although he was probably on the screen.  Too bad they lost – it was a fun day for everybody.

After that, I returned to the back yard to put the finishing touches on the fence – fill in all the screws, spray it with waterproofing etc.  I stayed out there until dark.

Sunday dawned nice and cool – I don’t think the temperature ever rose above 75 which was awesome for outdoor work.  With the old fence replaced we realized that I had only replaced that which adjoins all the neighbor’s yards.  There’s a small patch that fronts the street that is relatively new but gray colored and to have it all new except that seems silly.  I started to replace that too.  It’s only about another 20 feet and I know that those fence posts are all good since I’m the one that put them in.  I can’t remember when that was but it can’t be more than 7 years ago.

I started in but around 4:00, I just lost all energy.  The two days of work caught up with me so I put away the tools and went in.  But I finally got all the construction crap off the back patio where I had been staging it for the project.  I’m finally back around to the front and can work out of the garage.  I’ve got yet another pile of old pickets laying in the back yard but I think I can trickle those into the regular garbage pickup since I finally figured out that it is not necessary to knock the fence apart and produce an enormous pile of boards.  You just leave the fence sections intact and disconnect them from the fenceposts.  They stay together and are much easier to deal with.  I used my saw to cut these into more manageable sizes and with the smaller size, the garbage men will take them as long as there aren’t too many. 

I will soon be done with this massive project and can move on to what is hopefully a more fun project.  I have no shortage of projects; I think them up regularly and Melissa thinks up even more.  It’s a matter of picking the ones we want to tackle.

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