Very good progress today. I accomplished all I set out to do. And there is even a bit of magic to this story. But I’ll get to that in due course.
Obviously, I got the clamps removed and the pins cut to size.
My friend, Juan took me on a mad motorbike ride across town with his 5 year old daughter, Matilde standing calmly the whole time at the front of the bike reading some play story.
We stopped at a shop where Juan borrowed a grinder. I ask Juan to leave enough length to the pin on the Plan B side so that I can peen it to a flatness so where it can’t possibly ever slip out.
After then making a stop at his buddy’s automotive store to borrow a huge piece of compression equipment – Juan’s idea to bypass the peening step – turns out to be a bust so Juan gets convinced that we need a different style of pin (self-locking), which turned out to easier said than done.
After three more stops we more or less give up for the afternoon – it’s 2 pm and all the hardware stores have closed until 4 pm – and instead of catching a ride back to Max’s (my neighbor and mutual friend of Juan’s) I opt to walk the dozen blocks or so.
I needed to pick up a variety of seduction style beverages for my first ‘English class’ I am having with my attractive 22 year old this evening. ‘Wine’s fine but liquor’s quicker.’ Ever heard that one?
Don’t get me wrong, I am not out to seduce this girl but I don’t think I’d necessarily turn down the opportunity to at least try to talk her out of her clothes. What lush once famously quipped,” Step out of those wet clothes and into a dry martini?” But that’s another story altogether.
So after something like 10 or 11 blocks I am finally rounding the corner to my house and there sitting on the sidewalk is a man grinding knives using a manually spun stone abrasive wheel. I stop. Pause. Take notice. And Think. Then pull out my blade to show him the over sized pins that needed to be further trimmed to length then peened on each end to expand them to keep them in place.
He looked up, smiled and told me no problem. Keep in mind I have never seen a knifegrinder on the street here in town, ever. Also keep in mind that this knifegrinder shows up in my life exactly when I needed one. And also keep in mind he had his own ball peen hammer, and one better suited to the task at hand than mine
He not just set the pins correctly but he further ground a better bevel on my blade. In fact it was so sharp I cut myself while showing in to Max just 2 minutes later.
The mysterious appearance of this knifegrinder – at that exact critical moment in time – is further proof my friend that God does exist; and not just that He exists, but that He also is a benevolent and humorous one at that.
PS – I now face the remaining part of the restoration. And that is a ton of hand-sanding. And and make no mistake. Sanding a piece of wood takes an incredible amount of patience. And hand-sanding is easier to get wrong then get right. How’s that?
Simple. First, recognize the fact that you are not a Michelangelo, a super-gifted artist of such magnitude whom upon simply seeing a block of marble could quickly determine exactly how much marble and specifically in what proportion he needed to remove to realize his vision.
Instead imagine you’re that other guy where the converse is true and you just start polishing the wood with a particular grit of sandpaper till you finally step back from your work and see that you removed more wood from Side A then from Side B. You then try to ameliorate (I love that word) the situation by removing more wood from Side B till you step back again and see that you’ve now made the situation worse. And it’s not like you can just glue the wood back on. (There are no do-overs in sanding.)
Isn’t life wonderful in its simplicity?