I am at that age I refuse to say I am too old to do this or that. I do not know how to build a house of any kind, but I am a great listener and wish to give a hand. I seem to fall over easily like a Large Polar Bear rolling on a snow bank. There was a fifteen foot deep ditch on the right, at the retaining wall. I had fifteen dump truck loads of black dirt brought in to level off the property for the main house. I was helping, shoveling dirt into the ditch, as the ground gave in and I rolled into the ditch. A scab on my elbow and knee; the last thing I heard was my contractor saying, Oh Jees! And to workers running to see if I was still I live. I scared Eduardo half to death as the men helped me up and out of the ditch.
The men rub the fine black dirt off my body and carefully sat me on a plastic buckle to help me gain composure. I was the only one laughing. Does this sound like you or Am I alone with this trait? I will head toward the edge of the retaining wall and all eyes are on me as Eduardo says,
“Be careful! I want you to pay me this week,” We both laugh about my misadventure.
It is amazing to watch these people work: This week it has rained and rained, but it does not stop these men from working. I helped lay concrete forms for the cabina in the rain. The forms are for the concrete roof and we never stopped. I would hold ladders, hand them boards and watch them as the carefully pounded nails. We finished the forms in two days and yesterday poured the concrete in buckets and into the forms. No rain yesterday, but it was cloudy, I managed to get sunburned, of course.
The building has been produced by two or three workers. Yesterday we had five workers and they worked like a good oiled machine. I took them out for pizza and a couple of beers to thank them for their hard work. I always show them appreciation in the quality of their work. I work at having a positive time with the workers. It took me two weeks to recover from my fall. It is nice to see the men watching out for the older guy. No more work for two weeks, I need to refurbish the funds as my retirement check comes in and I can start the construction again. Let’s see if I can be useful and not a deterrent to this hard workers. My contractor is very patient and listens to all my questions, which come frequently.
Everyday I ask the men to show me their best work; they smile as Eduardo tells me of course we will have it no other way. At the end of the project I told the men they are going to sign their names on the outside wall of my house :
Hecho por (made by), they just smiled. Pura Vida!
“The Rains of Lake Arenal
I came to see the beauty of the lake
The Rain Forrest,the Volcano ash shake
The birds,flowers and the snakes
Hopefully a thousand pictures to take
Most rain in early afternoon
Forty mile an hour winds swoon
Trees bending to horizontal
Birds gliding nonsensical
Tin roofs clambering so loud
The force of the rain just pounds pounds
No voices can be heard
You lay quiet and watch the birds
The rain comes east to west
Never giving you time to rest
Too loud for you to sleep
You have no time clock to keep”
“The Lightning brightens the sky
Almost paralyzingly your eyes
Thunder claps the air
You take a deep breath
Hoping nature has more to spare
You count the seconds from the lighting glare
To the thunderous claps of the fresh air
Six seconds: six miles away
The storm is leaving moving away
Instead of black the sky turns gray
Sensing showers are on the way
No more wind,no more rain
Just another Lake Arenal rainy day”
Poems from Costa Rica
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