David Valkenaar reporting:
It was cold last night — cold and windy today. According to Cynthia, it will be in the teens tonight and a hard freeze is expected.
Last night and this morning, Eddie recruited Yvon (Luc’s dad), Sean, Michelle, Jodi, Kelly, and John (a new guy) to help with Cynthia’s house. His plans were to install the window trim and get started on the tile floor installation. And, of course, Doug came to finish the siding on the porch.
I left early to drop Kelda at the bus station. I took Yvon (Luc’s father) and John. (John is a new man from Vermont. According to Michelle, someone from the Pub sent him to HOGC as a place to sleep, eat and work.) So the good news was, we had a large crew and expected to get a lot of work done.
We opened up the house and got the electricity strung. Eddie arrived with with the rest of the crew and some tools. Cynthia met us all with a hug and coffee, as is her usual morning greeting. Doug got busy measuring and cutting the siding to finish the porch. I got busy on mudding the master bath. The rest followed Eddie’s lead and directions and started trimming the windows.
The trim crew immediately ran into problems.
First, the windows need to have foam insulation (the expanding foam kind) installed around them. We had one can and it was not working very well. They did get two or three windows insulated, though.
Next, lots of 1×6 was needed (for window sills and for ripping to fit the frame inside the window boxes) and only a little was on hand.
Next, it was discovered that the windows were not square, so 45 degree mitre cuts did not fit precisely. Eddie showed the crew how to cut the corners at different angles for each corner situation so the corner fit would be tight no matter the angle. Of course, that took a lot of time and often two or three attempts.
I suggested that professionals would cut them all at 45 degrees, then, for the corners that were not tight, caulk and sand them smooth before painting. They would all look the same after painting. But Eddie insisted on “cutting them right.”
Then Eddie had to leave and the trim crew was on its own.
By noon, I had finished mudding and had started caulking. The foam insulation had run out, and the trim crew had completed parts of two windows.
We went to “Salvo” (the Salvation Army lunch site) for lunch. When we got there, the serving tents were empty. Fortunately someone told us they were serving inside because it was so cold and windy. Ewww, was that nice. They had butane heaters roaring and it was cozy warm. They also had a hot lunch! We had steamed rice, a thick, kind of beef and sausage stew to put on top of the rice, fruit cocktail and hot corn bread.
We went back to t he house. Doug went back to the porch siding, Yvonne and I went back to caulking, and the rest went back to installing window trim.
Suddenly Eddie yelled to call the ambulance. John had collapsed and blood was coming out of his mouth!
Sean called 911. Within minutes a fire engine arrived, then a police car, than an ambulance. They determined that John had had some kind of seizure that caused him to pass out. On the way down, he had hit his head and bit his tongue. Though the puddle of blood on the floor looked large, the bleeding was not serious. The emergency crews were concerned, though, because John could not answer standard questions. They determined that he should go the hospital for observation and further checking. Though he insisted he did not want to go because he had no insurance and no money, they did take him away in the ambulance.
As we discussed what each of new about John, we put together some info. He had arrived day before yesterday and set up his tent in a grassy area near the bus station. The police rousted him during the night and told him to move on out of town. Michelle and Jodi met him at The Pub last night. Michelle brought him — a bit drunk — to HOGC. The bosses said he could stay here for the night but he must move out (with everyone else) the next day. At breakfast he volunteered to go with Eddie to help at Cynthia’s house.
After the excitement trim crew came to me and asked what they could do since they were out of 1×6 and out of insulating foam. Eddie got back from his meeting and told them there was nothing else to do, so they all went back to base. Doug and I stayed and finished the siding on the porch. (I’m afraid the top board has to be redone though. It is really ugly).
Tonight Chris (no two man) made a Thai dinner. White rice with a tofu and mushroom sauce to top the rice with. Ummm ummm good!
More people are leaving tomorrow, and Eddie announced he is sick and is taking tomorrow off.