Showing posts with label Friends. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Friends. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Latest on Lanikai

Lanikai Elementary School has a stage!

When last we spoke about the Lanikai Elementary School stage project (in this post), I was daydreaming about little kids performing the hula on that stage, under that beautiful banyan tree, a short walk away from the picturesque beaches of Lanikai and Kailua.

But, I needed to get my head out of the clouds. We had work to do! Kat managed to hook up with Shawn McKay. He's another parent at the school, a husband to one of the school's teachers, AND an actual contractor! With this video fly-through that Kat made of my sketchup model, and what I am sure was a kick-ass speech she gave at the fundraiser, the school got enough in donations to fund the project.

I'd given them the overall design of the stage, but the school couldn't start building until everything was approved by professional engineers. Enter our new friend Jon, the structural engineer, working pro-bono (on occasion) for the school system. He was immeasurably helpful. I gave Jon this layout plan:

and he turned that into engineered construction drawings:

I took Jon's construction drawings, which indicated but didn't show how the framing would work, and I made this plan to help visualize the framing. That's a lot of lumber!

And I made this model to indicate how the Trex decking should be laid out:

We had some fits and starts with scheduling the construction. We thought for a minute that we'd be able to do the work during the school's Spring break (back in April)- a slender window of time that would have allowed me to fly out to Hawaii to participate in the construction before flying back to NYC and then down to Barbados with Cindy, our friend Kendra, and the Castro's (Bernadette, Arsenio, and Axel) for our dear friends' the Spangler's wedding. But that didn't work out. There were a number of complications, not the least of which was the fact that Shawn-the-Contractor's wife was 9 months pregnant and due to give birth.

Then, one day during the Spangler wedding trip, this picture popped up on my Facebook feed. It documents the arrival of the first pile of lumber. I don't believe I've ever been so delighted by a pile of lumber in my life.

A few days later, Kat posted a time-lapse video of the initial framing of the stage. I was elated to see things coming together! But I'll save that video for later; it's now included in a time-lapse video of the entire build process.

In the meanwhile, here are a few still-shots of the stage framing. I understand that the construction was done both by Shawn McKay's construction team as well as parent volunteers.

I wonder if they bought the stair stringers pre-cut or if some poor soul had to cut them all out individually with a circular saw...

And here's the decking, staged to go on the stage. (You see what I did there? You like?)

And now for the complete construction in under 3 minutes (apologies for the abrupt ending of the music):

Here's Kat's rig for her GoPro camera. I'm thrilled she took the trouble to make that video, because not being able to participate and help really bothered me. Getting to watch the process (even after the fact) helped me not feel so terribly far away.

And here's the best part! Blessing the stage and the kids dancing the hula on it!!

And another best part: everyone uses the stage during recess. Some kids use it to sit and chat, some are dancing, some adults are supervising the kids, and a couple of girls had plunked themselves in the middle to color and draw. That's Kat in the pink dress on the left.

By the way, if I forgot to mention it earlier, I chose to wrap the stairs all the way around the stage this way so that the sides could be used as a small stage or lecture podium if any teachers wanted to bring their classes outside and stay in the shade.

The school is currently working on arrangements to make the hand rails and a safety railing that will go along the back of the stage where the wooden barricades (leftover from the May Day Celebration) are currently standing. I provided the school with 3 hand-drawn sketches when the rest of the drawings were submitted, and we chatted about it a bit today.  The project is down to punch-list items.  I'll post again when they get the railings and stuff up, but other than that, Lanikai Elementary has a stage, and we're all thrilled!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Arnold Cabin Project Part 2: Planning

Hi there!  Cindy and I are getting ready to fly to California for two weeks to work on the Arnold Cabin.   If you missed Part 1 of the Arnold Cabin Project, click the link to read all about it.

 Now, before all you mashers and thieves out there in Internet Land get excited about pilfering our television while we're out of town, settle down.  The upstairs tenants will still be home, and we have additional people cat sitting and looking after the green roof.

With the home front in good hands, I'm getting nerdy-excited about our trip.

Here's the plan:  We're going to fly into LAX, rent a car, drive up and spend a night visiting Cindy's twin sister, Jodi in Lancaster.  We can't wait to see the school where she teaches and the new house where she lives. The next day, we're going to drive a bit further up and spend the night visiting Daron and his wife Marianne in California City.  Daron is one of my three fathers, and if you don't know what I mean when I say that, check out this previous blog post: Three Fathers. One Me.  Cindy hasn't met Daron and Marianne yet, and I'm very excited to introduce them!  The following day, we'll head up to Carmel Valley and settle into our housing at Hastings Natural History Reservation.
The Barn at Hastings
I spent this past Thursday night, and all day Friday and Sunday researching metal roofing systems and suppliers for the cabin.  I think I found the right thing - corrugated sheet metal.  It'll stop the rain, last a long time, give the cabin a few more minutes of time if a wildfire comes through, and it'll be in keeping with the style of the cabin.  I have the heart of a loyal restorationist and preservationist, so I really thought hard before moving away from a shingled roof (which is what is currently on the cabin), but I've seen photos of other family cabins with sheet metal on them, so I think my ancestors would approve.

Another thing to consider is the delicate nature of the land and the fact that it's used for natural history research.  Most metal roofing systems these days, it seems, come either coated in paint or a polyvinyl fluoride stuff.  I didn't want to risk all that paint cracking off or the PVCF chemicals leeching or peeling off the roof and getting into the environment over time.  So I chose a product that's as safe and environmentally inert as I could find: 7/8" corrugated sheet metal coated in "galvalume".

From the manufacturer's web site:
The Living Building Challenge (LBC) certification program, administered by the International Living Future Institute, takes a broad view of sustainability and embraces the philosophy of a restorative future by looking at a building’s performance over time.  In fact, certification is not granted until the building has been occupied and its performance documented for one year.
The Institute’s Declare Label is an ingredients-based eco-label around the Red List of “chemicals of concern” that have human health and toxicity impacts.  Declare aims to provide transparency and open communication by allowing manufacturers to voluntarily share their product sources, materials and manufacturing locations.
Metal Sales™ is the first metal panel manufacturer to be included in the rigorous and exclusive Declare™ program. Metal Sales has fully disclosed all of the ingredients in the Acrylic Coated Galvalume® roof and wall panels through Declare, and they are designated as being Red List Free on the Declare Label. 
For more information, please visit
Are you still with me?  I know.  Corporate writing is snoozeville.  I could hardly get through that stuff myself, but I googled around, and it doesn't seem like greenwashing.  Here's hoping I'm making a good choice!
Since I've never built a metal roof, I had a lot of questions in my mind about how to deal with the corners, the roof ridge, the line along the roof where there's a change in slope (which I now know is called a "pitch break"), how the flashing and the roofing panels go together, how to deal with the little gaps under the corrugation, how to cut corrugated sheet metal... 
The internet is a marvel and a wealth of free education if you take the time to poke around and always verify things across multiple sources.  It seems us Americans cut sheet metal with power tools - nibblers and grinders.  In the Phillippines, Australia, and New Zealand, they just snip a nick in the panels and rip them by hand.  Since we won't have electricity (or water, for that matter) at the cabin, I'm excited to give the snip-and-rip method a try.
Well, the metal manufacturer had a bunch of installation diagrams and stuff on their web site, so I downloaded and read almost all of them.  If anyone ever wanted to prove that I'm not normal, they need only point out that I really loved spending three days reading about how metal roofs go together.  
But, before I could order the roofing materials, I had to know the pitch angles of the roof.  There are 3 roof sections on this cabin.  Clearly, the original 12'x21' cabin got too small for my two great-great-grand parents and their 5 children, so they added a section onto one side to make a 21' square cabin.  The new addition - let's call it the West wing - created a second pitch angle.  I took some rudimentary measurements of the cabin when we were out in July of 2013, but there were a couple of critical measurements I didn't think to take.  In order to find the slopes of the roof, I had to trace them off photographs I had taken.  But then I wanted to double check my tracings, so I ended up making a model of the cabin in SketchUp and matching some photos (taken on two different days) to my measurements.  If I did the photo-matching correctly, my measurements were pretty close.  If I didn't, I hope my metal order included more (rather than less) than I'll need - there's a week's lead time for orders, and we'll have to drive to Watsonville for the pickup! 
Arnold Cabin in SketchUp
Arnold Cabin in real life - July 2013
While I think the cabin is pretty square, it's clear from matching the model to the photos that the walls aren't perfectly plumb.  For a roof, square is pretty important so your eaves and gables - the parts that overhang the walls - aren't all crooked.  I'm hoping plumb won't mess me up too much, since I won't have time to starting fiddling with the cabin's foundation.  Someone else worked on that back in (I'm guessing) the '80's, around the last time the roof was replaced.  Want a picture of the foundation?  I'm sure you do:
Family lore has it that the boys slept down here - under the floor of the cabin.  The girls, I gather, slept up in the West wing.
And while I'm trying to impress you with this little cabin, here's a shot of the interior.  That's the front door on the left.  I'm guessing this would have been the living room:

Here's what the ceiling in that room looks like - just shingles on purlins on rafters.  Like my nifty new roofing lingo?  You can see the spot where the wood stove chimney used to be.

And last-but-not-least-ly, this is the West wing with the back door.
So, the plan is to strip off the shingles, sweep out the wood rat poop, nail tin over the rat and wood pecker holes, put the metal roofing system on the house, and replace the missing redwood batons and a couple of broken floorboards.  
Speaking of redwood, I found a guy who salvages old growth redwood logs down in Big Sur.  He's going to be our redwood supplier.  Here's his web site:
Oh, and if there's time, we'll replace the broken window panes and re-glaze the rest.  My Aunt Trish is flying in from Phoenix, my Aunt Lynda is coming down from San Francisco, and a handful of cousins will gather at Hastings for a little family reunion and visit to the cabin on our last weekend.  And for our last night, we'll be heading up to San Francisco to take Lynda home and have a nice visit with my cousin Robert.
I'm looking forward to a great trip.  New roof or bust!!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Black And White Makes Grey: What If You're Biased Against Yourself?

When I was in my late teens and early 20's, I didn't know how to figure out whether I was gay or not.  The only sex I knew about (straight sex) sounded to me like pretty much the most awful thing two people could do together.  I knew girls were supposed to like boys... my cousin Samantha was basically boy-crazy, so I watched her and tried to make myself feel the way it looked like she felt about boys.

It didn't work, but I didn't know it wasn't working.  I kept trying, and I aimed squarely at "doing what I was supposed to do."  I had this white-picket-fence vision of where I was supposed to be in my life.  I don't know where it came from - TV, my grandmother, talk at school... I was definitely one of those perfectionist kids who equated doing well with the path to receiving love.

Shortly after high school and not wanting to fall behind in life's schedule, I lost my virginity to a guy I was dating named Dave.  I don't know what it was like for him, but for me it was uncomfortable... painful at worst and boring at best.  A day or two later, after a conversation about whether he would promise to put the toilet seat down when he finished peeing (something I knew nothing about, other than it seemed an important thing to establish, since it had been a source of tension on many TV sit coms), I set to work convincing Dave that we should move in together.  I was 18.  He was 23 or 24, divorced, and a Corporal in the 761st Chemical Company, stationed at Fort Ord, California.

Portrait of an Army dude with a teenager...
We rented an apartment together in a grey, cookie-cutter townhouse-style apartment building in Marina, California.  We bought a huge sectional sofa, a gaudy brass floor lamp, a Sega Genesis, and cable TV.  If I had to guess, I'd say we had been together for about 3 months at that point.  Did you ever hear the one about what a lesbian brings to the second date?  A U-Haul!  Normally, however, the lesbian in the joke knows she's a lesbian... but let's not get ahead of ourselves.

I went through the motions of being in a relationship with Dave for a few months, and while I felt love for him as a person, I certainly never felt anything even close to a crush or romantic love for him.  But, at the time, I didn't know the difference.

I did, however, love to hang out with my friend Stacy.  We were both working on SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE at Monterey Peninsula College.  She was doing props, if I remember correctly, and I was on the fly rail and run crew.  She was funny in her own right, flirty, sharp, charming... but together, we were absolutely hysterical.  We were a dynamic duo and fast friends.

Stacy and Lory, such as they were then.
I admired Stacy's confidence.  She was bold and talented, tortured and unafraid.  I drove her home one night after the show, and while waiting for two men to finish crossing in the crosswalk so that I could turn left, with an air of bravado, I made a joke.  I said something to the effect of, "Move it, faggots!"

Stacy didn't laugh.  She didn't cheer me on.  She said, "Oh, no, Lory.  Don't say things like that.  It makes me sad to hear you say things like that."

I was confused.  Flashes of feelings and questions raced through my mind: fags were like monsters, right?  Or like the devil?  There was nothing good about them, so hating them was fair game, wasn't it?  Good versus Evil.  Wasn't seeing a fag just an opportunity for a decent person to flex their muscles and show their strength a little bit.  The gays deserved it... right?

Embarrassed and perplexed, I back-pedaled, I did my best to underplay my failed attempt to impress, and I moved on.

Over the next couple of days, Stacy became distant.  I begged her to tell me what was wrong.  She was certain I wouldn't want to be her friend anymore if she told me.  After the show one night, we drove to Carmel and talked.  It took a lot of convincing, but finally, in the car headed back North over Highway 1, as we came over the crest of the hill between Carmel and Monterey, Stacy told me that she was gay and that her friend Nina, whom she had spoken about many times but who was studying abroad for the year, was actually her girlfriend.

My legs went numb.

First, is it possible to say that my legs went numb and not have you worry that I crashed the car?  I didn't.

Then, is it possible to tell you so that you understand: when Stacy came out to me and my legs went numb, I awoke to the Truth that people - people worth loving - can be gay.

And that,



I don't know what the biological explanation might be for my numb legs.  It could have been shock.  It could also be that my body knew I was gay in that moment - even when my mind was still clinging to the ridiculous hope that I could carry on my straight-lived charade and have a "normal" life.

Within moments, as I clung to the white-picket-fence image I had in my mind of my life with Dave, I felt a fierce loyalty and desire to protect Stacy and Nina from anyone who might want to hurt them.  I fancied myself a Defender of The Gays.  I would be the ambassador of Gay Is Okay to the straights!

In the weeks that followed, Stacy and I became closer than ever.  She was living with Nina's family even though Nina was away, and I guess to get a break from them or so we could hang out longer, Stacy occasionally slept over at Dave's and my apartment.  One such morning, we got in my car and headed to Monterey.  I was taking Stacy to work and myself to school.

At the time, I was driving a hand-me-down from my Great Grandmother: a turquoise blue 1954 Ford Ranch Wagon.  I still own it.  Although it doesn't run now, my Aunt Trish in Phoenix keeps it for me.

"Elizabeth" - The 1954 Ford Ranch Wagon
I still remember the exact moment - the sun was crisp and low on the horizon to the East, and we were headed South, with the shining expanse of Monterey Bay to our right, and quiet Sand City to our left.  The hills of the Monterey Peninsula were waiting ahead of us.   I don't remember who said it first, but we pulled off the highway, Stacy called in sick to work (at a pay phone, see?), and we got back on the road - headed in the opposite direction.  We were playing hooky.  We were headed for San Francisco!

I've spent time in San Francisco with Stacy since that day, and now, 20+ years later, it's hard to be sure which memories go with which day.  I'm pretty sure we started on Haight Street with my first falafel sandwich (a tradition I still keep), we visited Chinatown, The Castro District, and I remember driving my tank-of-a-car (which had no power steering) down Lombard Street, which was hair-raising.
We talked and laughed and stumbled around the city together.  It was so much fun, I was high on that day for weeks afterwards.

Although I still couldn't imagine that I myself was gay, my relationship with Dave quickly fell apart, we broke up, and he moved out.  I had seen deep, primal joy on that stolen day in San Francisco.  On some level, I knew I wasn't going to see that kind of joy again if I spent my life with Dave.  But I was too ignorant about life and love, and I was still in hot pursuit of doing "the right thing."

I casually looked for another boyfriend.  The trouble was, I had no idea what a crush was, so I had no feelings of my own to go on.  I got in the habit of relying on other people to like me first in order to know whom to date.  And, when I was 20, a girl I had worked with on a production of WEST SIDE STORY gave me a mix tape, and after listening to it for days, it slowly dawned on me that all the songs were edgy, sexy... romantic.  I slipped into a 2-year relationship with that talented, hilarious, and fierce woman who is a dear friend to this day (also, I suppose, in stereotypical lesbians-stay-friends fashion).

It took me 7 years and a couple more girl friends before I finally found the confidence and self-assurance to know with certainty that I was unreservedly gay.  For those intervening years, it was as if I was a butterfly - flitting around labels like "gay," "queer," "dyke," and especially the oh-so clinical and stigmatized "lesbian" - trying to find a safe place to land.

My heart and my body knew who I was.  But all the rules I thought I was supposed to follow just confused me.  So many of the symbols surrounding "gay pride" were hyper-sexualized and, frankly, tacky.  I've never been interested in putting up phallic art, or driving around topless with leather chaps on a motorcycle, or getting in someone's face and shouting "Get used to it!"  In my naivety, I thought that in order to be gay, I had to identify with all of those symbols.  And while they've definitely helped break down barriers and give people a source of strength (even me, occasionally), it took me a long time to figure out that I don't have to go to parades.  I can be gay and quiet.  I can be gay and introverted.  I can be gay and stay home and garden on Pride Day.

I used to think there were a lot more rules than I now know there are.  Some people have some very strict rules against homosexuality.  The way I see it, those rules are like trying to outlaw the sky on a rainy day - people don't have to like it, but all their shouting and carrying-on can't make the rain stop being wet, so they might as well get used to it after all.

On The Occasion of Gay Pride Day NYC - 2014

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Lynne and Reka's Roof Project (A Retrospective)

Cindy asked me to do a post about this project, so I dutifully comply:

A couple of years ago, some very dear friends of ours, Lynne Boyer and Réka Domokos, asked if I could help them replace their old laundry porch roof.  Lynne is a painter, and she offered to do a trade - paintings for carpentry.  I was totally into the idea, but we had a scheduling issue, because Lynne and Réka live in Hawaii, and Cindy and I live in Brooklyn.

Cindy's mother, Lila, also lives in Hawaii, and Lila started having some health problems, so we started going to Hawaii to help her and the family quite often.  On one of those trips, I made a visit to Lynne and Réka's house to check out what was in store for me.  Here's the state of the laundry roof in 2011.  This is the view from the back yard.

There were some noteworthy problems to try to solve.  First, there were these cross beams blocking their access to the washer and dryer.  In fact, I think the beams were actively trying to hit people in the head when they weren't looking.

Then, there was the fact that the Hawaiian mist was trying to turn Lynne and Réka's laundry roof into a moss garden.

And, the exterior staircase, the one Lynn and Réka use to access their living space, was supported by these 4x4 posts.  But the interior post had somehow long ago been cut short, and a 2x4 was scabbed on to the side of it.  Lynne and Réka's stair case was sagging, and that post was a dangerous bummer.  I wish I had taken a picture of the sagging steps...

Lastly, Réka needed a place to hang her kayak, and they both needed more head room, so we decided to make the new roof slope less.

I'm used to engineering things for theatrical purposes, but I'm relatively new to permanent structures, so the project intimidated me to the point of procrastination.  I did a lot of research - looking for photos of roofs that come off the sides of buildings, etc. as we waited for the stars to align and present us with an opportunity to build the project.  When it came time for Cindy's mom to get moved from her condo into a nursing home on The Big Island, the Keiter kids convened at their parents' Kailua condo to sort through all their family stuff and get the condo ready to be sold.  I wasn't to be involved in that process, but I wanted to be nearby Cindy for moral support.  So I joined her for the trip and planned to spend my days working on Lynne and Réka's roof project while Cindy was working in the condo.  On the flight to Honolulu, I made a sketch of the plan from measurements I had taken on my previous trip:

The day after we arrived, Cindy went to work in the condo, and I went to work on the roof.  There was so much mold in the wood, I thought demolition was going to be easy.  But it turned out to be a big job for me, a borrowed crow bar, hammer, and circular saw, and my muscles, which I brought with me special - all the way from Brooklyn, New York.

I cut the roof down in chunks.  Réka took this shot of me after I'd gotten through the first couple passes.  Honestly, it was a miserable job.

And here's the whole pile of roof chunks.  Such a small pile of wood for such a lot of work.

On to construction!  The first task was to install a ledger board on the house, and on that, I nailed the rafter hangers.  In Hawaii, it's very important that structures are built to withstand high winds and termites.  So I used pressure treated lumber and lots of metal joist hardware.

 Next, I had to install the posts that would support the roof.  I wanted to transfer the weight of the staircase to the supports for the laundry roof, so I could cut that offending 4x4 post out.  I also wanted to make more un-impeded space in the laundry area, so I decided to move the support posts to the outside of the walkway.

 Cindy was on temporary work relief from her mom's condo the next afternoon, so she cheer-led and helped me mark the locations for the posts.

Réka took a lot of these photos.  She's an excellent photographer.  And there's Lynne in the back, with her million dollar smile.  I'm fiddling with the first of 3 post anchors we had to install.

I used a borrowed hammer drill to drill the bolt holes in the concrete.  This is me marking the drill bit depth with a piece of tape.  It looks like Cindy brought her muscles from Brooklyn too!

 The rains came just as we finished up.  On one of the 3 post anchors, the bolt stuck up too far, so not having a hack saw, I just drilled a hole in the end of the post so it would sleeve over the bolt.  Here's the offending post anchor:

 The rain was also pretty lucky.

 The next morning, Cindy was dressed to impress, and I got started on installing the posts.

 We made a temporary work bench for their mitre saw out of some cinder blocks and planks that were lying around.  Cindy mock-nailed the chop saw down while I got the screw gun and prepared to anchor the saw for-reals. 

Now, we were in business.

I put the two end posts in place and temporarily braced them with 2x4's.

 Then I installed the horizontal beam and braced the whole structure back to the house with the first two rafters.

The slope looked good.

I installed the 3rd post and had most of the rafters up in no-time.  Unfortunately, I made a measurement error, and the rafters weren't coming off the house at a perfect 90-degree angle, so I had to go back through, pry all the nails out, correct the problem, and re-nail the rafters to the cross beam.  That was a pretty big bummer, and I was too embarrassed with myself to take any pictures of the rafters before I corrected their position.  So here's what it looked like when I was done for the day and everyone was talking story.

The next day, I removed the cross braces from the original posts, finished installing the last of the rafters, and through-bolted the old stair support posts to the rafters.  

I also installed little cross braces at the tops of the support posts - mostly because I like that sort of style.

And a wide shot at the end of the day: 

The next step was to put the plywood on the roof.  That's pretty standard stuff.  You tack some plywood up to give yourself a walking/working surface, and then you cut plywood pieces to fit - starting from the highest side of the roof and working down the slope.

By this time, the Keiter's were through sorting their mother's condo out, so Cindy came to work with me every day for the rest of the project.

 She was an excellent assistant, although how she hammered nails in this position, I have no idea!

Here we are using a chalk line to mark where the rafters run, so we could nail the plywood down along the interior rafters as well as the edges.

Et, voila!  Shade returns to the washer and dryer.

Next came the roofing membrane.  We bought a two-part peel-and-stick system with some aluminum edging.  The manufacturer instructions specified that the layers had to be unrolled and left to flatten out in the sun for a little bit.

Then we cut the first run to length and put it in place.  When installing roofing membranes, you start with the low end of the roof so that subsequent courses overlap in the direction that the water sheets off the roof.  We also started with a skinny course of the underlayment so that the seems for that layer didn't line up with the seams for the top layer.

Cindy supervising me.

 The edging goes on before the second/top layer.   It's just tacked down with nails.

 It got pretty hot on the black roof in the sun.  Here, Lynne caught us taking a break. 

Cindy doing the peel for the second layer, which is folded in half length-wise and done in two steps.  First, the upper half.  Peeeeeeel.

Gently pick up.

Flop over, and stick.

Then, since we didn't have a big weighted roof roller, we marched over the seams with our feet to make sure it was well stuck down.  We met in the middle.


Repeat the process in the hot sun a few more times, and you've got yourself a finished roof surface!  But there was still more to do.

First, I removed the offending 4x4 stair support post with a handsaw.  Before the project, the stairs to the house had been sagging, so I jacked the post up to make the steps level before I bolted it to the rafters.  When I cut the post off below the rafters, the stairs stayed solid - much more solid than they were before, in fact.  And they were level.  A success!

I have no idea what I was doing in this photo:

I installed some new cross bracing above the new roof line, just in case.  The structure was quite solid without it, but I figured it might be helpful if a typhoon came or something... And here's Keiter with a howzit for you.

Lastly, we nailed a plywood barrier between the stair support post and the house to protect the water heater from the elements.

And, we installed some pulleys and rope cleat for Réka's kayak.

I had hoped to paint the new roof for Lynne and Réka too, but there wasn't enough time in our trip.  So Lynne and Réka took care of that part.  Here's a couple of shots of the finished project as we left it for them.

No more posts and cross braces wanting to smack your head while doing the laundry, and plenty of room for Réka's boat.

The roof was so sturdy, I really wanted to put a little green roof on it.

That little roof certainly has a lovely view - this is looking out towards Honolulu Harbor.

It was a beautiful sunset, but I also just like this picture.

Our fee?  These beautiful paintings by Lynne Boyer.  If you don't know about Lynne, she started out as a professional surfer and became the Women's World Champion in 1978 and 1979.  And now she's a full-time artist, doing paintings mainly in Hawaii and Hungary, where Réka comes from.  You can see more of Lynne's artwork at her web site:

Ta da!