Thursday, April 29, 2010

Day 4: Rock

Marc had left at 6.45am this morning for his work day-trip to Sherbrooke. JF arrived at 7am on the dot. Hiram was wagging his tail against the bed long before I heard him knock at the door. The snow was almost gone and I was looking forward to the progress that could be made on the digging today.

Marc was in the middle of his Sherbrooke presentation to management when JF's first call came in. Then there was second call, rock, and third call, foundation issue - need engineer. You can't fault the guy on his communication skills :) He had hit rock, and not just the rock pieces he'd been dealing with earlier. We are talking about giant slabs 3 feet thick. Well, there's the bible story about the wise man who built his house upon the rock... but nothing about the couple who wanted to jack hammer through it.

Rock has been one of our greatest risks for the digging, and so we thought we had built contingency into the excavation contract for this. However, I think this is more than even JF had expected, so tomorrow is the moment of truth, when we find out how he'd like to re-negotiate. To be fair, Marc and I feel JF is being very open and honest about the situation. There are pros and cons to having rock; it takes more time to dig, but is easier to pile up and remove. As for the second item, foundation issues and engineer, we need to do a little cash deal, and she'll be here next Tuesday.

Despite the slow down from the rock, the guys cut through the exterior wall and managed to dig out all the earth from the front left of the house (this is where Jen from 1800-got-junk had spent the morning 2 weekends ago, crouched over removing wood from very limited space). We now have 2 big tractors in the back yard and a little digger under the house! When I arrived home this evening, the smell of gasoline from them was terrible. I hope that's not too typical. A few open windows and it wasn't too bad to get rid of.

I can't finish this post without a mention of our amazing neighbours. Marc had a good chat with them, while positioned precariously on the spiral stairs (the only solid structure left in the back garden!) I listened, and understood a lot, but my French skills did not feel quick enough for joining in the discussion. First there was banter on how things are going, next there was appreciation for the fact that we've been trying to keep all our neighbours (left, right, up and back) informed of our plans, and then most unexpectedly, they offered to look after our BBQ and my tender golden, Hiram. Marc and I had already decided that the work was too much for my dog to handle, I think it's just too noisy. He spent today in the bath - tell tale sign being Roland Rat in the tub. I'm amazed at how kind people can be. Of course, the neighbours have not spent a day with Hiram the furball yet, so they may want to retract their offer, but I'll definitely take them up on it for now!

As for tomorrow, I need to pick Lenny up from the mechanic ($), the plumber is coming ($$), Marc will renegotiate the digging contract and go to the bank (more $$$), and then there's our normal jobs (which help pay for our crazy schemes).

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