Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Life in the Land of Megaliths - or Brains, Brawn, and the Use of the Lever

It seems, ever since I made my home in Brittany, the land of megaliths, that I've been moving big stones.

I'm back home for a short vacation. A few weeks back a section of the stone wall around the garden fell into the driveway. My neighbors were kind enough to move the offending stones to one side. But then a few days before my arrival for vacation a storm passed through and another section of stones fell.

So I'm spending part of my vacation ... moving big stones...

Here's the mess that greeted me when I arrived.
I cleared out some of the ivy and all the dry blackberry vines. Then moved most of the stones out of the way so I could begin reconstructing the wall. But there was one stone I couldn't handle, a monster I estimate at 500 pounds.
Here you can see the offending stone, the big one in the center. At this point I gave up. I was really frustrated to be able to handle all but ONE stone. I was considering contacting a mason with power equipment and making an appointment for them to come out, probably months from now, to move the one stone.

Anyhow, I gave up for the day and forgot about it. Then the next morning, feeling fresh and reinvigorated, I realized it was nothing I couldn't handle with brains, brawn and the use of a lever.
I found a piece of scrap lumber and used it to lever the stone, propping it up with smaller stones, until I got it tilted and raised up to the level where I could nudge it back into the right location.

That's done now. Tomorrow I'll wrap up the remaining work and update this blog post.
Okay, it's done, at least, for now. Today I got the main pieces back in place. When I come back out again, hopefully in July, I should be able to tie up the loose ends. Eventually the sections of wall on either side will have to be rebuilt too. But they look stable enough for now.