Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Ok, folks, I've decided to go ahead and continue posting, but not until after the start of the year.  At that time, I'll let you guys in on why I've named the blog, "Making Waves", and see if I can't do exactly that! I hope that you all have a safe and "Happy New Year"!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The "Occasionally" Annual Salmon Beach Bulletin

First off. let me wish you all a “MERRY CHRISTMAS” and a “HAPPY NEW YEAR!”  Please, forgive me for  "sending" the OASBB in this fashion, but the economic collapse of 2008, combined with the fact that Ted Brown Music now has 5 other guitar teachers, and my student "load" now consists of 6, count 'em, six students (I had more than that when I first started teaching, back in 1970!), has me "scrooging" every where I can.

Despite that, this year has been wonderful, and this media lets me share some pics which will help you see why I say that.  For the last 8 years or so, I have been planning to raise my house, and here's a shot that will help you understand why I wanted to do it.

This was a storm that blew through a couple of years ago, and in the 46 yrs. that I've been here, I've never had a wave break over the front porch and hit the sliding glass doors, and believe me, it sent me scrambling for some plywood to nail across the opening between the living room and bedroom, which are both on the water side of the house!  Another shot:

For the last 5 years, I had been stashing pilings and beams with this project in mind, and had put a bunch of money away, thinking that I would hire a bunch of guys to do it for me, but when June rolled around, and I had the guys lined up (and yes, they had raised a couple of houses down here before, so I knew I had a capable crew!), I found that I just had to be involved, and we started setting up for "The Great Levitation" on June 3.  I cancelled lessons for 2 weeks, and on the morning of the 19th, about 20 friends showed up to operate 12 20 ton hydraulic jacks,

and in the space of about 3 hours, we raised the house 18", a quarter inch at a time.  No broken windows or jammed doors, no one hurt, and everything was "purrrrfect", except my nerves!
For the next 8 days, the house was sitting on these blocks, with me praying that the Earth would not develop a case of Parkinson's Disease, because the tides were wrong for digging in the new set of pilings, which would support the new beams under the house.  We got started on that little project on the 27th, and spent alternating days of digging in 5 pilings, followed by lifting a pair of beams, and I can't even begin to tell you how relieved I was when the house was sitting on 15 new pilings and 3 sets of beams which ran from the back of the house, all the way to 7' in front of the house.

Oh yeah, I also discovered that doing this kind of work was a whole lot easier 20 years ago, than it is now that I'm. . . ahem. . . more "mature"!  I managed to rip the ligament in my right arm that connects to my shoulder, so now those biceps have slipped and look like "Aaahnold's", even when my arm is relaxed.  Doc says that he could repair it, but it would leave about an 8" scar, and cost major $'s, and months of rehab and physical therapy, and that it probably wont cause any further problems, so. . . Who cares?  :)

I spent the following couple of weeks pulling out old pilings, which I sold to a neighbor who needed them.  I also had to remove all the temporary jacking posts, which I had salvaged from a huge landslide last spring, and spent a number of days cutting them up and filling my woodshed.  I ran out of room for storage, and wound up building a small deck behind the woodshed for the "surplus" fire wood.  I probably have enough fire wood that I wont have to go looking for more for 2 or 3 years.

Around the first week in August, there was a recall on my "new" bike, and when I took it in for the service, they told me that they could not release it to me, as the wiring harness was melted, and the law specifies that with a safety recall, the vehicle cannot be returned until fixed.  Well, my bike is a Yamaha, built in Japan, and you may recall that Japan had a "small problem", earlier this year?  Oh yeah; "Quigley-luck" strikes again!  They had the bike for 3 weeks, and I got bored, so I built a 7' X 16' deck on the beams which were sticking out in front of the house!  By the way, the bottom of the house originally was at the bottom of the beam running front to back, to give you an idea of how much higher it is now than before the lift.

In October, my old friend, Art Barlow, who was living on Salmon Beach when I first got here, and whose last visit was about 10 years ago, came to stay with me for a week, and we had a grand time. We spent one day trying to find Mt. Rainier, which refused to show itself; 6 hours of driving through the rain and fog; visibility approximately 300',  but it was a lot of fun.  We spent another day wandering around Tacoma, visiting the Marine Museum and the Pt. Defiance Zoo.  And we spent the entire week stuffing ourselves with great food!

The weekend of Dec. 3rd, my old friend of 44 years, Bob Clark blew in from Grant's Pass, Or, and we spent a wonderful weekend of fun and frolic, laughing ourselves silly!  Hopefully, he'll be able to make it up here again for Christmas.

So, m'friends, I hope you've enjoyed this; I was able to show you way more pics than I could have in a Christmas card, plus I have now entered the world of "blogging"; I have no idea whether or not I'll keep it going, but if you're interested, feel free to check back here every once and awhile.

I once again wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year; I hope you will all be with loved ones over the "holly daze", and that the coming year will be full of love and laughter, health and happiness.  I love you all!