I haven’t written here in a while. It’s been a strange week. The Valley Fire ravaged the mountain, burned Harbin hot springs and Middletown. Raven lived in Middletown and worked at Harbin. Her truck was up there as she was returning her Mom’s car in Monterey. She’s OK but everything is gone. Except the vardo, it’s here. I was concerned early in the week as the fire came ten miles from here up the hill. It rained on Wednesday, thank you.

Raven has been here since Tuesday, arriving with friend Nick who spent a couple nights, his place survived the fires, an artist, but the roads were closed. I’m glad Raven has the vardo, her little room, a very tiny home, but something. It’s working as a gypsy caravan should.

I’ve had troubles with my truck, won’t start. Stuck at the gas station yesterday eve for a couple hours until the same guy came back after I got the battery posts clean with another jump, it lit. I gave him a bottle of Two Buck Chuck, thanks so much. Trickle charged all night. This morning it started easy. I drove up to Luis’ house, he checked it out. The charge system and battery works, the starter is shot, available in Santa Rosa at Napa Auto. “If you jog it a couple times it will start.” OK. I drove home.

Raven would like Starbucks coffee, I’d like to see the farmer’s market. Let’s go. We park at Safeway, coffee, the market for tomatoes, carrots and Duncan’s mushrooms. The truck won’t start, even jogged. A lady gives a jump, no good. We’ll wait, go for a walk. Let’s eat, pizza for me , salad bar for Raven. The truck STARTS on the second try, way cool, we’re mobile. We head for Santa Rosa, up and down the avenue we find the Napa auto store. With the truck still running, Raven on watch, I go in and get the new starter. We check the hood and door frame to verify the right part. To home via Luis’. He’s deep into a flywheel job, tomorrow we can fix it, go home, trickle charge it. By the way he has a couple cars and a small truck for sale if Raven get’s state aid money.

Back home, I need to let folks know I won’t be at the Bob’s retirement party at 3:00, I email Chin, best connection I have.  Raven is online for a ride to Calistoga for more aid info.

Finally we get to work on the vardo. It is Saturday after all. Raven installs the second side screen into the already stained frame, good for cross ventilation. She installs it into the vardo window needed before a picture is available, literally cool. The big upper door frame still needs stain and some putty to fill the knots, wait on it.

Meanwhile, I have an idea. I get the piece of card stock Raven used for a preliminary sign before the sandwich board. I mark the back with the wooden home made big compass for a 12 inch circle, the size of a bucket. The radius divides to six parts lined in  The 2 x 4 I bought is 3 1/2 inches wide, 1 3/4″ to each side maps out the 2 x 4. Using the compass on the large and less than small side I get a pattern, cut out, applied to the 2 x 4 . Six pieces cut on the band saw, then sanded on the round lapidary wheel. to smooth. Fitted round, they need adjustments, sanded in individually to close in order. With the loose band clamp I apply epoxy slow cure glue, both sides, then tighten the clamp. I have parchment paper beneath.


Once it dries I’ll use a round router bit on the top two sides. Thinking a straight router bit set to the bucket diameter on the router table and feed the part around. That’s the plan. Then hand sand everything to total smooth and finish with a good varnish. This will be a fine bucket seat.

After that I chopped up the Meyer lemons I bought for marmalade to soak overnight. More to do tomorrow in the morning cool.

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