So what does a “landscape project” look like while the work is going on? My sister-in-law, Lisa, is a lawyer. She once visited a site I was on while she was with my brother, Mike, and the family on their way to the Oregon Coast for the weekend. On their way out, they stopped by my project. It was a “makeover”. It had an original huge green front lawn and bushes all over, sort of rustic and wild-looking but was bought by this guy who sold Cray Computers for a living. He had some serious bucks. Well, what he wanted was a massive ‘redo’. When Lisa and Mike and the guys stopped by, we were very industriously tearing the crap out of the whole place. We had someone in every corner, making all those loud and obscene sounds of breaking branches and breaking cement and plastic. Honestly, she came as the “symphony” was reaching a true crescendo! Her son, Beckett looked on with amusement and avid interest, as their daughter, Zoe looked at us like we were all a troop of stark-raving mad jackals. I walked over to say Hi, grease-covered from a bit of earlier “wrassling” with some nasty machine incident or other.
“My God, I could never do that!” were Lisa’s first words. 😉 It made my day.
OK, let’s be honest. Naturally enough, at least in my experience, tearing stuff up, for any man, ranks up there with beer, playing sports and children as highly-rated fun. Poor gorgeous dear – What could she know? Beckett got a trip inside the little excavator we ran and he also got into some of the fun by helping Uncle Steve break out some resistant cement and tear up a few more things. With me and him at the controls, I closely watched his interest develop into that well-known fever I have so often seen in the delighted faces of my male personnel when confronted with a machine and an obstacle.
For a great example of all this, I present this series from a project we had in Reno……….one of those “redo’s”…… We take an otherwise finished product such as this:
(Left click to enlarge any picture)
And then we go “on holiday”, as it were – to this:
And then they get to know us!!
We try and do our destruction in the quietest of ways but cutting and packing away cement is not something which lends itself to that. The truth is, we wear ear protection ourselves, lol. Don’t get me wrong – tearing things up is still cool, even protected!
Anyway, we generally mention just how loud we will be. However, there are times when they seem not to believe us. Suddenly, shopping looks attractive! Because of the paneled nature of this patio, we were able to get out of there in a couple days – less actually. But leaving it like this means adding stuff:
Replacing 30 tons of cement also implies replacing it with at least that poundage, unfortunately for us. But, fortunately for us –
We have a machine! Guess what!! Yup………….it’s loud too! 😉
Soon, however, the worst of the noise is gone. This all took about 3-4 days, the fact is. The machine had done its job, carting debris away and dumping it, prying up those gnarly slabs of cement and then delivering the base material for what we’re replacing all that with. So far, it’s handled about 40 tons of stuff. Considering the manual alternatives, this allows us to cut the price a bit and to spare our already-beleaguered backs. Finally, the purring of actual men and materials takes place. It can be a fine source for gossip but some protection is required – all too often – for “virgin ears.” Nevertheless, Cory’s love life got broadcast to the general public. The client here was the sister of a very. very dear client of ours who confided in me later that she thought Cory “could do better”, lol, with sly, knowing wink.
Working in tight quarters, such as Ken is attempting here, slipping blind-cut pavers underneath the siding with little or no maneuverable room can yield to some ripe language now and then. Of course, we check to see if the natives are in earshot. We are usually successful at this. Having said that, there have been some pretty funny immediate changes in conversation on “close calls”.
Oh well, after all that hubub, 2 weeks later, what’s the Big Deal? Everyone is happy.
And we get to move on, disturbing yet more people!
These guys were so disgusted, in fact, they had us pave the entry to their driveway!
Satisfying in every respect – heck – we even get paid for all that! Honestly, it’s almost like stealing.
What a funny behind-the-scenes look at the manly man activities in your business. Ha! I think some women would enjoy the destruction side of things too, but I know that gleam of delight that teen boys get, having one at home myself.
I enjoyed your before-and-after shots too. Very nice!
.-= Pam/Digging´s last blog ..Amaryllis surprise =-.
Ha ha, Pam. Listen, to be honest, I have known some gals with some excellent Destructo Licks. But that would have ruined the story! Hey, I thought the gossip part was pretty good, though. I mean, isn’t that supposed to be the province of wimmins? We are every bit as bad, lol, and sometimes get caught at it during our manly man activities.
Awesome story. When it comes to destruction around our house – cupboards, old porches & such — I just leave my wife (Destructor) with a hammer and crowbar for the day. She’s less inclined to build things and enjoys tearing things apart. I think you should hire her.
.-= Jim/ArtofGardening.org´s last blog ..The floating tree of Jaffa =-.
LOL, Jim. I like her!!!
The comment about your bobcat and its loudness had me cracking up lol. You say that job took about 4 days? Looks like you did a mighty fine job! The driveway looks equally as good.
LOL, no, man, the excavation and supplying the new stuff just took four days. In other words, the NOISE, lol. After that, the lady got more than she bargained for. We have some very loose tongues. That’s what I meant when I said her sister who we work for all the time mentioned that she thought “Cory could do better”, wink, wink, lol. They were talking about his girlfriend. I think a lot! 😉