It has been over a month since my last great wall update. You are probably thinking that the silence must indicate intense progress and therefore there is no “material” for me to cover on the blog. Alas, if only this were so. Unfortunately, when looking back over Summer 2013, it has become quite apparent that there were many excellent moments like our family vacation in June to Florida where we were able to spend much needed time together (not knowing then that it would be the last time I would see my Nanny). But there have also been quite a number of lows. And these lows have been low. The passing of my Nanny has been and continues to be a grave pain and sorrow. I still struggle to wrap my head around it and often find myself about to call her on the phone only to remember I can no longer do that. While the wall is in no way the same type of low as the loss of my beloved nanny, it remains a thorn in the summer that continues to bring David and I down.
Two weeks ago, our neighbors invited us to a cookout. Perched high on their deck, we had the vantage point of looking down into our backyard. And, what did we see? A mess. Stones tossed haphazardly across the backyard in random heaps, a bobcat backhoe parked on the side of the house, a dirt pile stacked so high you cannot see the house next door, a partial retaining wall built, tools strewn about, a broken tent tossed to one side, another tent set near what should be a “work station,” trees and shrubs uprooted and dying on the dirt, and cement and sand where once grass grew. My personal favorite item in the backyard is a canister of the mason’s urine that he has left in the sun which we dare not go near for fear of a toxic death. A project that was projected to last 3 weeks is edging ever so closely to 3 months with no true end in sight. To say communication with the mason is difficult would be an understatement. David and I have tried to take a relaxed approach this past month and half. We have not called or texted him (as he prefers texting over answering his phone), unless he has not appeared at our house for more than 7 business days. Typically, when he does text back, he makes grandiose promises to work the next days including the weekend! Of course, this never happens and David and I are left feeling foolish, powerless, and frustrated. The excuses continue to pile up including my two favorites thus far: getting wisdom teeth taken out and being attacked by a dog (though there were no scratches or bite marks!?!). Of course, if these things did happen along with the many other tragedies he has shared with us this summer then, like us, the mason is having the WORST summer ever! But I cannot help feeling like he is a little bit of the boy who cried wolf.
Whenever we look out the windows or enter and exit the house we are reminded of our life savings that has seemingly gone down the drain and the disaster that has exploded in our yard. Lately, after finishing up a walk with the pups, we stop in front of the house and say, “Geez look at this house. It is like the owners must not care about it at all. What a mess.” Then we hang our heads and walk inside. In my fantasy world, I wake up and the wall is completed this week, the fence goes up, and our “dog pen” (as the mason so eloquently calls it) is finished. But, this is not so. David and I have a knack for finding the lemons of life. Our pups (who we love unconditionally) have tons of health problems including explosive diarrhea should they eat anything other than their dog food, our house has numerous small but annoying glitches, and now our mason has taken the cake and become the lemon of the summer. Anyone have a recipe for lemonade? As ridiculous as this is and as outlandish as his excuses have been, we just want him to finish this project so that he saves face and we save some money.
Upon doing a walk around the “lack of job site”, Laura declared, “You got a shitty (expletive) deal! It is unconscionable!” I agree bestie, I completely agree.
Laura examining the mason’s urine canister. She could not believe he would leave such a thing behind for weeks.
*What is complete looks great and we are happy with the (unfinished) product but man, oh man, the process is a nightmare.*