Seven days! Seven days of scraping, pounding, hammering, nail gunning, tippy toeing and loud thuds as old shingles fell to the ground. Seven days of having to get up by 7:30 AM with droopy shoulders, baggy eyes and squinting from early morning heat and sun shining through the windows. I’m amazed I haven’t had headaches from all the racket. When, God, will it all end?
Thursday evening around 7:30 PM, Marv finally knocked on our door and said that he was done. At last, I sighed!! This poor man was dripping with moisture from the deep humidity, was covered in roof and shingle dust (if there is such stuff) but still greeted us with a big smile. I am so in awe of this man for his stamina, work ethic, good humour and dedication to building homes in Guatemala. I presented him with a bag of homemade cookies (chocolate chip and oatmeal coconut) after he finished explaining to Nat what to watch for when the installers arrive for the solar panels. With the heat and humidity, the shingles are still going to be a bit “mushy” and only soft-soled shoes should be worn – no heavy work boots. We expressed our appreciation and thanks for his work and with that this wonderful man was on his way home for a well-deserved rest.
Now hoping for at least one or two days of peace and quiet, Nat soon advised that the installers for the solar panels would be arriving Friday morning around 7:00 AM. Oh, God, it’s going to continue. What to expect? Surely to God, they can’t be any worse than poor Marv!! As Thursday evening wore on with Nat and I struggling as usual to find something intelligent to watch on T.V., I couldn’t help but wonder how this was all going to play out.
Friday 6:30 AM – I can ever so slightly hear Nat get out of bed. He’s done this all his life. After working shift hours at GM he’s learned to be quiet as a mouse in the mornings in order to spare any family members who were still off in LaLa land. Nicely falling back to sleep on his warm pillow, I was suddenly awoken again by even more men – this time three of them. The installers had arrived! Who knew they could be even noisier. Armed with hammers, drills and scaffolding pieces, they were soon on the roof making noises directly above my head. I felt like I was in a dentist’s office with a drill about to come through the roof and drill my forehead in half. With the drill going around and around above me, the side of the house felt like it was being invaded by steel girders. The scaffolding was in use to hoist up steel rails, bars and other shiny “whatnots” to hold the panels. To make things worse, the drilling was constant and almost rhythmic. I’m thinking this isn’t New York, it’s tiny little Ridgeway, where you hears birds chirping in the trees, doves cooing on the fence and chipmunks up for their early meal. These guys meant business. I had no choice. It was now 7:30 AM and I was up!!! God, I’d rather have dear little Marv back – at least he tippy-toed!!
Naturally, Nat greeted these gentlemen in their scruffy shorts, torn t-shirts, rubber-soled shoes and one sensible one with a sun hat!! He had to be the new guy on the job!! Nat was soon advised that they would be working until close to noon. They’d be leaving early because of the intense heat and returning on Monday to continue. Before leaving, however, they were expecting the arrival of the actual solar panels and by 9:00 AM the truck had arrived. My curiosity was now peaked. I managed to get my morning treadmill routine done and pills taken before I peaked out the garage door to see what was going on. Actually there wasn’t much to see, except for 3 now sweaty men helping the truck driver to unload his tightly-wrapped solar panels onto the garage floor, along with Nat, hands in pocket, watching with a “man grin” and a sigh of relief in his heart that this job was finally in the end stages. I was glad, too. Hopefully I’ll be able to get back to my usual sleep pattern soon and not have all this extra time on my hands in the morning wondering what in hell to do!!!