18 Jul Work Work Work Work
Morning after morning I am greeted by the squawks of the gulls. You do not notice it much. It just becomes background noise. Sometimes it is an interesting break from work watching how the gulls interact with each other. The gulls are omnipresent here; it is not man’s domain but the gulls. It’s a…humbling experience (if you can believe that). Each morning I awake with a slight stiffness in my hands from all the chiseling from the last tour out here. The work continues. We had been prepping the concrete and wood for the stucco finish. Tar paper was attached and wire lath nailed to it. On the concrete portion, the lath had to be drilled and screwed to it. I was tasked with doing this. Four drill bits and over 70 holes later, I had all the base of the lath attached. On Saturday, Lonnie was task with some clerical duties for the day so I was given a list of things to do. This included trimming and attaching tar paper and lath with no supervision. I was glad to be trusted with the work. A couple of prep other prep items such as removing paint near the edges for good adhesion were included. The toughest task was moving all the stucco mix from the water tank building down the hill to the visitor center work site. Each bag was fifty pounds and there were over fifteen bags. Luckily I was given some training on the tractor. Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday we set out to stuccoing the building. I was in charge of mixing the stucco and delivering it to Lonnie to put up on the building. After each mix, I had to clear the bucket and tools so the mix would not harden on them. It certainly kept me plenty busy. We did not have enough mix to do all the areas we needed to so part of the repair still needs a top coat of stucco. This did not stop us from rolling onto our next project. We need to remove the historic windows and the put up temporary Plexiglas windows until the others could be repaired. Unfortunately, they were in bad shape and had been painted shut. After tedious work and a spider web filled narrow work space behind the visitor center information displays, the windows were removed. Thank goodness that I do not get claustrophobia. The will be reworked and repaired so that they can be reinstalled at a later date. This trip out has been a little different than the first trip. I feel more confident in my abilities. This time I was prepared with enough food. Lastly, the gulls were more noticeable because they were growing and learning which meant I was observing them more. A desire to know more and more about the island (and the rest of Channel Islands) burned deeper in my bosom every day that I was out here. It is something everyone should experience out here at this secluded and forgotten area of southern California.