Sunday, June 06, 2010
Doing further research into deck construction, Gary discovered that (surprise, surprise), our deck was built completely incorrectly, which means that it will have to be rebuilt from scratch. We may be able to use some of the existing concrete supports, but since this is our house, infamous among contractors everywhere, I tend to doubt it.
In case I haven't explained this before, the previous owner of the house was a recording engineer (allegedly under close Federal scrutiny for drug dealing, although that may just be a colorful rumor) who had all of her home-improvement projects done by her musician friends. Based on the reaction of every legitimate contractor who's ever seen any of this work, said musician friends must have been operating in extremely altered states, whether the previous owner sold them the substances that got them that way or not.
In any case, the deck seems to have been a Musician Project.
1) We won't be going with the initial contractor, who didn't pick up on the problems after a visual inspection of the deck, whereas Gary sussed them out with an internet search, and
2) We definitely won't have a new deck by July 14.
My dear, and sensible, friend Sharon points out that there are lots of lovely parks in Reno, and has even offered her own deck in a pinch, although I hope we won't have to take her up on that. Dad liked parks, and most of our parks have views of river or mountains or both, which he would have loved.
Dad also liked simple food, so I've decided that the menu should consist of various salads -- Gary has a ton of great ones for summer -- along with things like shrimp rings and smoked salmon. The less cooking that's needed, the better. We'll have chocolate cake, however, because Dad loved chocolate, a trait his daughters have inherited.
So I'm feeling better about all that. On the guest front, I think we're going to have to put Fran in a hotel. Our house has a very open floor plan; the only downstairs room with a closing door is the half-bath. I doubt that Fran can handle stairs at this point, and I don't think I want her to try. (Gary and I have both been having flashbacks to Dad's traumatic arrival in Reno.) She also dislikes cats, so sleeping downstairs with roaming cats and no available shower probably wouldn't be too much fun for her. She loves casinos, though.
Tomorrow we'll start getting new bids on the deck. I think we should award the job to whomever laughs the loudest, or turns the most interesting shade of purple, after looking at the old one.