"Surely by NOW (eyeroll) you have that project finished??"
I'm not sure that I have the punctuation right, and I dunno if the stress is in the right spot but you know what I mean. This is the job that never ends. If SWMBO paid me by the hour, I could retire on the time I have into this sucker. It better not fall over. Ever.
So tonight I go to pick up another load of bricks. And if the rain breaks up long enough, I can shovel some gravel into the second walkway to the pool. I discovered on the weekend that the coping stones are too hard to cut with my little saw so I will have to rent a concrete saw to cut them with. And just like I did last week at this time, I am going to be bold and predict that by this time next week, I will have completed the wall.
I better have. I can't connect the pool until the wall is done.
Actually, I can't connect the pool until the walkway is dug out, and that's the project waiting for me after this project. Followed by the pool deck. Followed by a pool liner. I need to squeeze a fence in there someplace, and 2 arbours and maybe a patio and gazebo.
There is a 50% chance of rain today. That may push back the schedule. It seems like there is a 50% chance of rain every day.
SO you know what, the project isn't done yet, and it may.never.get.there. The backyard is going to eat me alive this summer. And that's what being a grownup means.
So why do we DIY? Why DIY a retaining wall of all things, and will this project bring me happiness in the end?
Why I DIY...
- I'm cheap. By DIY-ing this project I was able to save myself some money on materials, and my time is cheaper than a contractor's.
- I'm in control. If I DIY something and things don't turn out quite right or I decide to change the working plan, I can make changes on the fly without worrying about a contract or paying for 'extras' or what have you.
- I love learning. Before this project I had no idea how to split blocks or level a base course. I had never used a tamper. Now I know how to do all those things.
- I'm proud of my work. Its refreshing to have my coffee by the window and look out in the morning to see the wall that I built with my tools.
- Doing is better than watching. I could sit and watch things get built on TV, or watch a contractor, or coach my neighbours on their projects, but for me, the feel of tools in my hands, and the sounds and smells of the worksite are satisfying, even if its just cleaning up or the scrape of the shovel against the gravel. There is satisfaction in that.
- I want my kids to have an "I can do that" attitude. I believe that when my boys see me swinging hammers and shovelling gravel, they realise that they will have to care for their families one day too, and that this is what Dads do. It has already been pointed out to me that I build differently than Bob the builder. To me that is important. They're noticing.
This weekend is Fiesta Week and next weekend is the Tall ships festival, so I may take a couple days off, but the project has to push on, and push on it will!