14 April, 2017

Well, the Driveway's Been Going Through Some Changes

With apologies to Buddy Miles. I haven't thought of this song in ages. Changes was a hot tune back in the sixties.

After the miss-start with the tractor with the backhoe, it's nice after a few days delay, to see the Bobcat coming through the gate. They sure do look like fun to play with.
Bobcat Coming In

They seem to be really tiny and cute. But as you'll see, they are real powerhouses and timesavers.

I think we were lucky to get this one right before the Easter holidays.

Making Initial Cut
 He's making his first cut into the sod on the cut-off from the original driveway - just about where the backhoe tractor dug up the power lines.

Heading to Dump His Bucket
And there he goes, off to dump the first of many buckets-full of spoils from the project.

They told me there would be a large amount of dirt. I was ready, but it was still a bit of a surprise just how much dirt was removed.

Almost Done With That Section
 I'll admit to being a bit skittish or gun-shy when he got near where we had the electrical dig up the other day. But the operator's skills and deftness in controlling the machine were impressive.

Removing Some of the Gravel
Elsie had a substantial bed of gravel laid down for her driveway from the gate to the palapa. What I didn't leave in place for a service driveway, I've had moved to be able to reuse it somewhere else.

Digging the Sod
A lot of sod needed to be removed. None of it planted by us. It's all spontaneous growth and all of it is the crappy spongy grass that's prevalent down here. "Onto the spoils pile with it, I say!"

Beginning the Wide Part
This part of the driveway is the widest, right in front of the house, which is OK, as it will also double as visitor parking as needed.

Looking Like a Parking Area
The wide area is taking shape. I think it will be able to accommodate a row (one behind the other) of parked autos, and still give room for a vehicle to pass by.

Dusty Work Moving Rocks
To allow for a lane for vehicles to pass by, we had to move more of the pile of rocks. I didn't think we were raising much dust during the whole operation, but Dianna said there was quite a lot of dust on the front veranda.

Finishing Up the Parking Area
Just adding more to the big pile of debris up by the road. I hope he'll be able to move that stuff around and make the pile appear to be lower, if not smaller.

Smoothing the Parking Palapa
I missed a photo or two of breaking the curbing in the palapa. Here, they're all moved over by Elsie's palapa and the operator is smoothing out the transition so we can drive into the parking palapa easily.

Digging the Bypass
We realized with the original plan for the driveway, if two people were parked under the palapa, there was no way for someone else to get by if they were heading out of the place.

We decided to create a bypass right beside the palapa. This meant we had to move/do away with a couple of plants and dig up more curbing.

Smoothing the Bypass
Here, you can see the bypass is almost done. I think it's going to work quite well.

Busting Up the Concrete
This is scrap concrete (and a lot of it too!) left over from the construction of the house. This is where a lot of concrete was mixed when they didn't use the cement mixer.

Actually breaking It Up
Probably a good five or six bags of cement went into making this pad. When we get the concrete out, we'll replace it with marl to level it out.

A Huge Pile of Spoils
They warned us that there was going to be a large pile of leftover dirt and sod. They were right too. I'm hoping they'll be able to smooth it over and spread it out, so it's not so tall

Towing its Own Trailer
Just as he was getting ready to move the big hunk of concrete, Bobcat developed a flat tire. So, that effectively ended the work day.

Here, he's bringing the trailer for the Bobcat inside the fence. The plan is to leave it and the Bobcat here overnight.

Fixing A Flat
Loosening the lug nuts. He's going to take the tire in to get it fixed and will finish the job in the morning.

That was Wednesday. This is Thursday. Easter weekend is staring us in the face. The operator and his supervisor told me they would be back at 8:00 AM today, to finish the project.

8:00 AM came and went. I waited till 9:30 AM and texted Mario to see if he could tell me anything. After a while, Mario texted me that they would be there around 10:30 AM. Then about 10 to 15 minutes later he texted me that the operator's baby had gotten sick and he had gone to the hospital and would most likely be here after lunch, which I assume is probably 1:00 to 1:30 PM.

Good thing I texted Mario. Most businesses are closing around noonish today. I still had a few things to get us through the long weekend that I needed to shop for in town. That is one pet peeve of mine. Disrespecting the customer by not bothering to call or text to keep them informed.

So, it's now 1:00 PM. No operator. Hmmm. Why am I not surprised? The operator's baby must really be sick. If that's the case, that's fine. I'm just PO'd that no one is bothering to keep me, the customer, informed.

At 2:00 PM, you can guess what I said as I opened a beer and got in the pool. Well, there's always tomorrow... More likely, Tuesday. I wonder what I can sell a Bobcat and trailer for?

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