The barn, week ending June 24, 2023

First, a picture of Fritz. He’s perfectly happy hanging out in the weeds as long as he knows where daddy is.

Second, snakes. We got ’em. Rat (the one below was at least 4′ long), Ring-necked (Diadophis punctatus), something else I’m not sure of. I found at least a dozen ring-necked snakes living between the boards above the cellar.

Rat above, ring-necked below. The guy below was maybe 8″ long and thought he was hiding. Until I tickled him.

I hated to evict them but the floor needed to go. Why? Well, read on…

Soon after moving in, we found that the boards making up the roof of the cellar were completely rotted out. The only thing keeping it from collapsing was the flooring that had been put in above and a few extra supports put in a few years back.

With the rains last week I moved from working on the main barn joists, which were busy getting wet since I haven’t been able to patch the roof leaks yet and began tearing up the only reliable method we have for getting into the main barn. What could go wrong?

First order of business was to add some additional supports so that I could remove the warped siding. Not pictured here though you can see more pictures in the gallery. I wasn’t able to remove all the siding which is why you can see a few hanging down where the rafters prevented me from getting to the nails. Solved that a few days later using a reciprocating saw and metal cutting blade.

Anyway, after removing most of the warped siding I got down to removing the flooring so I could evaluate the sills and determine what work was needed to not only replace the flooring but give the roofing more to sit on than just the siding.

Ripping and tearing and screeching of nails ensued with fairly frequent pauses to…

Say “hi!” to the snakes nesting between the boards.

Loads of silt had blown in over the years and they found it a comfy, dry place to be until I came along.

Because part of the evaluation needed to include fully examining the underside of the floor, I started cleaning out the cellar.

Loads of debris that needed to be removed. About half the posts you see in the picture weren’t holding anything up.

If you’d like to see some destruction live, check out

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Michael Harrison

Husband, Programmer, Irish dancer, tinkerer, astronomer, layabout (as much as possible)

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