There was an empty place because the boys didn’t, as I had imagined they would, put the grill together while I was at church.
They waited till I got home and ceremoniously hauled the box out of its hiding place in the garage.
“I’d have thought you’d have done this already,” I said sotto voce.
“That’s a good idea,” said #1 son. “You should have told us that.”
For reasons I haven’t grasped, #1 son frequently talks to me as though it’s his painful duty to point out to me the better path I should have taken. Often the topic is something like this. I resist the impulse to say, “I figured you guys would be able to think of that on your own, and also you were asleep when I left.”
We spent a couple of hours building the grill. My husband is really good at that sort of thing, and of course I have all those years of putting store fixtures together, so there were few really dramatic moments.
One was when the guys realized that they had put the grill body in backwards. I aided this realization by finding the holes for the shelf brackets — on the opposite side from where the shelf should go.
“That’s okay!” I chirped. “We’ll just take this off, whip it around, and put it in the right way.” Airy hand gestures might have accompanied this statement.
My husband wordlessly went and got a drill and put some holes in the right place.
Once it was put together, the grill was quite grand, as you can see. It will also serve as a smoker. We have a turkey in the freezer from Thanksgiving. I’m going to check the rules on freezer safety for turkeys, and if it hasn’t been too long, we’ll smoke that turkey.
We used the charcoal chimney. This is a thing which you fill with charcoal. You put some crumpled newspaper in the bottom and light that, and after a bit you spill the hot coals into your grill.
It makes lots of smoke while it’s working. However, once it’s ready, your food cooks with startling rapidity.
Today I’m meeting with The Computer Guy about a new project. I got a mock up from the new designer for the last of my pro bono projects. It isn’t as good as The Computer Guy’s, but it’s certainly better than anything I could have done. And it won’t cost as much as The Computer Guy’s.
I sat down last night and figured out a schedule. I did calculations about my jobs and discovered that, given my usual sources of inflow into my stock of work, I typically have between 31 and 54 billable hours per week. Then I have meetings and other unbillable hours on top of that, plus life. So then I made a schedule including life.
#2 son was glad to hear this, since it seems to suggest that we’ll be able to pay his tuition, something we were all rather nervous about. He’s planning his “Odyssey,” his overseas study project, already. He intends to go to Thailand. To that end, we’ve ordered Rosetta Stone in Thai for him. He’s going to work for me and study Thai for the remainder of the summer. #1 son is going to find a bike for us to buy for him so he’ll have reliable transport, and then he’s going to see if he can’t get more work hours in some way.
IMHO, the boys don’t have full-time work because they haven’t tried hard enough. However, they are both working part-time, and if #2 son will take on enough of my unbillable hours that I can actually finish my billable ones, he’ll be making a contribution.
So that’s the plan.