The Beginning – Chapter 15

One morning out my window.

One morning out my window.


Chapter 15
Rose asks what they expect to have supplied in exchange for working. Roman tells her he is retired and tired. Tired of living in town with nothing to do. Thad wants to spend the summer with his Dad and also, out of town. He is tired of the women wanting to go bar hopping as their idea of fun.
Noah has just finished up his job and no plans made for getting another any time soon. He took the job thinking it would be a nice way to meet folks out along the road system and decide where he would like to settle down and build. Seems as soon as the local folk heard he was from the government, most were less than polite, so that idea wasn’t so great.
All 3 guys wanted an out of town Alaskan experience. Rose said if they really did, they could start by building themselves a place to stay. She said she didn’t have money, she had land and they were welcome to stay on some of it, as long as they were willing to sign a lease and go by her not allowing alcohol or drugs on the place.
Noah asked if he could continue staying in his camper on my place at present and maybe help out now and then, also, on both places. “I guess, although it will be pretty cold come Winter.”
He says by then, his Dad and brother should have a cozy place ready, if he comes and helps out a lot every day or so. His brother smacks him and says they won’t need his help, they are big strong capable men that know how to do stuff, except maybe cook well. Of course Noah smacks him back and soon they were being overaged boys, trying to get the best hold. When their Dad said Boys in that tone of voice, we knew it was something they had heard often in their life and they both instantly stopped. Yes, it looks like they were raised right.
Roman and Thad will stay in Roman’s trailer tonight and then see what needs done to build a nice small place for them to live a while.
Noah comes back to his camper on my place. “I hope you don’t mind, I enjoy staying here and we work well together, I think.” he says.
I have to agree. Besides being nice to look at, he is a lot of help and pleasant company. Without his help, it would have taken me a lot longer to get the firewood and woodshed done. Plus the help from Will and Shari really put me ahead of my self imposed schedule for summer jobs on my place.
I feel bad for Will and Shari, having yet another body show up on their place. I don’t know if they will want to stay in their house yet or not. However, this time, it should not be of interest to the Troopers as nothing pointed to it being involved and they already had all the evidence they had taken when there the last time.
The next day, I go on over to see Rose and Kara. As we talk, I ask if they have all the firewood in that they will need for the coming winter. Rose says she is working on enough for another winter, besides, just in case she can’t get out and do it. Kara still has a little bit left to get for a years supply and would like to finish up her woodshed. I suggest we all come work here a few days to get the immediate jobs done and then go help Will and Shari get their place ready for winter. They have never wintered here and no idea of what to get done. With only the 2 of them and her pregnant, it could be hard on them. Rose and Kara exchange looks and agree. Since we have extra help, we can make use of it. We talk a bit more and decide to see if the men have decided what they want to build and if they would like assistance on it as part of the jobs to do here.
We all head over to the trailer where they are staying and soon we are walking around and looking the area over. Since the trailer is parked in an out of the way area on the old roadbed and it is as compacted as a person could wish for, for building pad, they ask if it is okay to build right there. It would simplify snow removal, also. Rose and Kara snickered and I knew I would have to find out later, why.
Roman liked the shop Rose had built below her house, so they were going for simple, and easy, like it is. They did decide to use 2×6’s instead of 2x4s for the walls like Rose had. She said she would have, too, if she had the money at the time. It is 16’x24’ and 2 story with both stories open and no interior walls to block space. Plenty of room for 2 people to be comfortable as Kara had lived in the shop 2 winters with 3 teenagers, 2 dogs and 8 cats and they all survived it.
The guys drew up a material list and headed in to town to pick up at least enough to start the project. Rose, Kara and I decided to all head over to see how Will and Shari were making out. Also to see if our idea on lending a hand was okay.
Shari was out in the greenhouse when we pulled in. Will was out behind it, weeding a bit in the garden near the greenhouse. They both were wearing handguns which we had all suggested to them a while back. A rifle or shotgun is effective, but hard to carry while working. If you have set it down somewhere while working, it isn’t going to do you any good when you need it in a hurry.
They both looked like they could use a break, so our visit wasn’t too much of an interruption. Shari was having a time with morning sickness and looked a bit peaked. She wanted to learn to sew, so Rose offered to show her how. Hmm, maybe I should sit in. I knew how to sew furs, but not so well on material. Rose said she could show us how to darn socks even, if we were so inclined. Well, maybe. I do have some that could use a bit of help.
Will and Shari were happy to hear our suggestion and offered to come help on Rose and Kara’s projects first, but we said if they wanted to help the guys on the cabin, that maybe half a day instead of taking them from their projects all day. They had helped so much on mine and were far behind on their own stuff. Besides, they had helped on the water project at Rose’s.
As we were pulling back onto the road, Roman’s truck came by. Wow, that was one quick trip to town and it was loaded with building supplies. Those men wanted to get building.
We followed them into the driveway and all pitched in to help unload. Rose had some old pallets sitting over beside the shack, so we stacked boards up off the ground on the pallets.
It did not take long to square out the corners and place the pier blocks they were using for supports. Rose and Kara came back in a few minutes wearing tool belts and I grabbed mine out of the back of my truck. In no time at all, we had the floor laid out and nailed and set on the pier blocks the guys had set in a grid inside the squared area. Roman had bought wire mesh to put under to keep squirrels out of the insulation, so we placed that and nailed it before nailing the 3 sections of flooring in place. We have build it in 3 8’x16’ sections and would nail them together for the 16’x24’ floor. After we had the floor in place, we filled the sections with insulation, then started nailing on the plywood sub floor. In just a few minutes, we had that done, too. Wow, this should go fast with all of us working on it. Roman had picked up a few windows but not as many as he would need for the whole project. He decided where he would like them to be and marked it on the edges of the floor. Then we started on the walls. He had bought T 1-11 siding for the outside, so as we made a section of wall, we placed the window, covered with house wrap, taped, cut the siding needed and covered the wall, then stood it up and nailed. We had the 4 walls done before we all took a break. It looked like a house already.
Kara stopped a bit after we got started to open the shack. She came over with to-go boxes and gave us lunch. When Roman tried to pay her, she said it was just stuff that hadn’t been selling well and she would rather it was used then feed it to the birds or let it spoil. Later, he left a good tip in her tip jar.
After we ate, we built 2 of the upstairs floor sections, by laying them out on the bottom floor and then after assembling them, lifting them up and someone up on a ladder pulling, we got them into position and nailed the sections on both ends of the building. After building a small section of wall, near an outside wall for the staircase to go up, we would use joist hangers to build the center section of the upstairs floor. That small 8 foot section of wall was simple and placed about 3 feet out from the wall for a nice wide staircase. Rose marked out the stair stringers on the 2”x12” boards and Noah cut them out. He nailed 3 foot long 2x4s spaced along them to hold them in place and then placed inside the short wall. We moved the wall a bit to get a snug fit and nailed it all into place. Now, we could go up and down the stairs if we walked carefully on the edges of the stringers. Thad came over with some 3 foot boards and tacked them in place up the stairs so we didn’t have to go tippytoeing on the stringers. Not fancy, but it worked.
Roman got out the joist hangers and we got to work upstairs after placing a couple sheets of plywood down across the floor joists so it would be easier to work. As soon as we had the joist hangers fastened on, the joists were placed and nailed in and the plywood sub floor was handed up and nailed down. Rose was darn good at trimming it even with a chainsaw. She said she did have some experience at it. We were actually ready to start the upstairs walls. Roman was almost in shock. He didn’t have the windows or enough T 1-11 for the upstairs. He was going to have to make another trip to town. The building supply store doesn’t close until 10 pm, so he would just go again this evening. He thought he better pick up some more nails also, since we tend to use a lot, if 1 is good, 3 are better.
I said good-bye and headed for home. Noah was going to ride in with his Dad and Thad was going to stay and go cut firewood for Kara. I think he likes her.

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