My son and his partner came to visit. Brought scotch and fudge. Brought a new puppy, too. Fiddich and Megan were not amused. Not in the least. The puppy had a few boundaries and definitions explained by them in ways peculiar to dogs, not humans.
Human boundaries and definitions were ignored totally as the puppy chewed, bit and explored everything possible innumerable times. Including my toes!
I always love it when my kids come to visit but this time was special. I really needed my son to help me get moving on the funicular again. He and I got on the lower funicular job first thing. It was good. I’d say something like, “We’re going to need all that stuff down on the beach. There are two saw horses and a sheet of plywood under the boatshed with which to make a temporary table. I’ll get the rest of the tools.”
If there was a response, it was a grunt as he turned to get that first chore done. There were no questions as to “Why are we doing this?”, “What’s the plan?”, “What thickness of plywood?”, “Do I really need that tool”?, “Shouldn’t we get some whatchamacllits?”,”Have you read the instructions?”, “Have you discussed all the issues with our neighbour?” (Who isn’t there, anyway.) And other such things as my usual helper would ask while throwing a stick for the dogs and wondering aloud if she should get a hat on and some sunscreen. “Hey, look! Was that a bluejay?!”
Working with men is so much easier.
Yes, I know that is sexist. Kinda. But it is true. Well, it is true for men working with men, anyway. Working with women may be so much easier too if the person expressing such an opinion is of the female persuasion. Who knows? It is a completely different work culture. I think both genders have weird gender-based languages and habits peculiar to themselves. Sally’s is definitely peculiar.
For one thing: men don’t talk as much but when they do it is pertinent to the job at hand. “Seen the hammer?” Women seem to talk the whole time they are working together and when they do, it has nothing whatsoever to do with the job at hand. “Did you hear? Sarah had that mole removed?”
C’mon, you know it’s true!
Anyway, we got to work and, of course, we worked on the lower portion of the track system while the tide was out and that section was exposed. And we did good. But it was hot and we had been at it for a bit when Sal called and offered tea and turkey sandwiches. My son is a good worker but there is little that will get between him and a turkey sandwich. The tools were still rattling on the ground as he raced up the steps to claim his prize. So, we took a break.
He’s also good at taking breaks. I don’t blame him. He doesn’t have to work with the tide every day and is not aware of the speed at which it can claim your work area. And any tools left too low on the beach. I put off the decision to head back to work until I thought we had no choice and, leaving him with half a turkey sandwich to still devour, I went back at it. He followed and we barely got the bolts on before the water washed over that section. In fact, we got the last two bolts on under water. Cut it pretty close but we got it done.
And so it went. Haven’t worked with him in a few years and we didn’t miss a beat. Complete harmony. Conversation would consist of, “Got a bolt?” and I would hand him one. Five minutes later…“Which holes next?” And I’d point. Five minutes later…….“Got another bolt?”
It was a gift.