I want to tell you everything.
I can barely move.
These last few days, I have been coming home from the worksite around 4 or 5, and after taking a shower, crashing happily on my bed under the blessed air conditioning.
There is so much I want to say. Mostly, I want to say that I never again want to underestimate the cost of keeping company with relationships which have run their course.
One afternoon, three weeks ago or so, a girlfriend wisely said to me: "You are so over this crew."
I didn't know what to respond to that. Over this crew... well, let's see. That week, it was true that I had not gone to the house during the day, did not want to see any of them and only went at night when they were gone. It was true that I felt helpless, and it is certainly true that the joy had drained out of the project.
Whatever happened, I may never know. But something had happened, and it was poisoning the energy.
Having made it official that we were transitioning, Jorge invited his son in law Luis to join us and darn it, the three of us were going to make it happen. Which really would have taken six months.
But the universe intervened, Jorge fell off a ladder and well, it looked unlikely that Luis and I would get the job done under two years.
Jorge having told me once again that he was not leaving, he called on Evaristo to come work with us. Then on his own dad, Nacio. Then finally, Osvaldo, Evaristo's son joined us yesterday, and man oh man, we have been kicking butt AND having fun.
There is music, everyone is happy, the water cistern got filled yesterday (oh the joy of this), and every day things are happening.
There are stories about the beautiful old doors I have found (and the man who will fit them and hang them), the floor that will get oxidyzed and the cement furniture I am hoping to create. As soon as I have time, I will talk about all these artisans I am meeting who are going to be part of finishing the house with love.
For now I will just say that I am learning a ton, that I am learning both some theories of building (while it may go up quickly, next time I will be ready for that phase to take about 1/3 of the whole time), and practically (how to polish stucco, concrete and what needs to happen before what - not all of which we have done with this house.)
I am there every day, doing whatever I can and getting a lot of smiling support on what I can't.
The first time I picked up a shovel (which may have been the first time in 20 years but no way was I going to let anyone guess that), they all stopped and stared. All of them. Now, when I fill a bucket with stones, they kindly replace it with an empty one so I may keep going.
I have been taught how to polish stucco, cement floor, how to color the cement floor and if all goes according to plan, I will learn how to make polished cement furniture very soon. Or watch, at least.
I am happy, often dirty, tired and would never have guessed how much I would love this whole construction thing.
Jorge is wearing a sling, and I keep reminding him not to use his right arm.
Tomorrow the roof is getting poured (on Sunday, which is definitely not a work day), and when I asked the guys if they wanted to take a day off on Monday or Tuesday, they answered: no, not really.