New Dock Workday

     Over the last year and a half I have gone to each workday hoping to be asked to do strenuous, getting-dirty work, show some ingenuity, and—use power tools! In my head I am a forty-something D.I.Y. kind of guy (hello reality check), but mostly, like many, I just like feeling useful. Last Saturday was a success in that regard. We were all industrious in various ways, but more importantly the workday was a success.
     I got there by 9:30 a.m. and there were already quite a few ICCers present (or Turtles, as they are known, although to this day the reason why an animal that looks like a turned-over canoe was chosen to be our mascot and namesake still escapes me). We marched to La Marina and took possession of the place. Here were the already somewhat assembled 12-foot by 16-foot frames, the big piles of different sized boards, the black floaters, the hardware, the tools, the cords, the chargers, the clearly marked “Christmas  Decorations” bucket for easy-to-lose bits (literally) and pieces, the gloves. The work had been painstakingly planned out by the master builders. The weather was pleasant, as was the view of the river encompassing our boathouse. The mood was jolly. Work began in earnest, and the various levels of skill and eagerness were woven into a beautiful team effort.
     One of the things that, to my mind, made a difference is that Mystery Steve was injured. Not being able to do stuff himself, he had  to explain very clearly what was expected, give the scope of work, detail the thinking behind the goals, and supervise. Not that I don’t wish him a prompt recovery, but “I am going to be a stickler about impact drills” or “we are going to flip the whole thing without rocking the hardware” would not have had the same ring coming from a man who could use both his hands.
     Excitement definitely reached a high when, ahead of schedule, the semi-completed structure (one-third of the future, longer dock ) was lifted onto the flatbed, eased into the water with a truck, restrained and guided to the dock by five elegant waders—two of whom soon inadvertently became swimmers—and a kayak (fittingly manned by our dock master), and tested. We added boards, we added people to simulate the weight of the ramp, and more people to simulate the weight of people, and the result came in: 4 inches to 5 inches Don’t ask me if the dock was 4 inches to 5 inches too high or too low (this part I did not get), nor how we were going to remediate that. At this point my faculties were impaired by hunger and thirst, and no one had even mentioned lunch as a remote 
possibility.