Travlin Round the Next Bend with Barb & Bruce travel blog

DO NOT look at the hole in Barb's pants on her butt.

Hey look, an almost union carpenter

Larry the boss, great guy

the houses and mud

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sunday morning bright and early we packed up and hit the road heading for Phenix City and the Habitat for Humanity build we had signed up for. Another very warm beautiful morning. I hated to leave Gulf Shores and the beach but duty called. It was easy travlin. Hit I-65 and headed north. This is a new piece of highway for us. It was more scenic than we expected. There was very little development and a loooot of pine trees along the way. There was much more traffic than we expected for a Sunday. Went thru Montgomery but didn’t see any of the city. Tied into I-85 for a ways and then peeled off at Tuskegee and drove a 2 lane into Phenix City.

We are actually in a small place called Ladonia right on the outskirts of Phenix City and are parked in a parking lot of a large Baptist church. It isn’t bad. A parsonage is right next door and we are tapped into their power and water. It was hot when we got here and had to run the air conditioner for a while. There are supposed to be 3 other couples from Escapees here working with us but they all backed out, 1 for medical reasons and the other 2 because they didn’t like the accommodations because it isn’t full hookups. We have large tanks and they said we could dump our grey water on the lawn so we won’t have a problem.

The problem is that this is right next to Fort Benning, the largest military base in the world I’ve heard. A base was closed in Kentucky and 3000 army troops were shipped here. So there is a building boom going on and there are a lot of construction folks around. That filled all the campgrounds where the Escapees used to stay. That is why we are in a church parking lot.

Monday morning came bright and early, real, real early. Ya see it is kinda strange here with the time. Alabama is in central time zone but just across the river is Columbus, Georgia, a much bigger city, on eastern. So Phenix City goes with eastern so we moved the clocks ahead an hour. Barb set the alarm for 6:20 am which of course for our bodies was 5:20 am. Oh my. But we dragged ourselves out of bed and soon it was “hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to work we go.” We didn’t know what to expect.

We had met our contact at the church and he showed us the houses that were being built. We really knew nothing of what we were getting into. The Escapee RV Care-A-Vanners have been doing these builds for years and are supposedly pretty well organized. There is always a team leader and we have talked to many who have been on builds and say the camaraderie is great. Unfortunately Barb and I are the only 2 people here! There is a site supervisor named Larry. He is a great guy and retired from running a manufacturing plant that built steel buildings. The week before we got here they had 100 college students who put the walls up, roofs on and constructed all the interior walls for 4 houses. Larry said they were a bundle of energy. But now 3 old duffs are chipping away.

We’ve been working hard and were pretty sore Monday evening and Tuesday but today is better. And our incredible spell of fantastic weather has come to a screeching halt. We have been in shorts, tees and sandals for weeks but now that we need to work in long pants we ordered up 50’s, and it came. Monday’s hi was about 58 as was Tuesday. This morning the rain was torrential with thunder boomers blasting away. We are working inside so not a big deal, cept for the mud. Good ol’ red clay. Greasy stuff.

So I’ll sign off cause boy does morning come early! Hi ho, hi ho.

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