Renovations update: If you're at the Boonedocks in late March or early April, you'll see that the cabin is still on the ground, but the utility shed has been removed from its western side where a new deck is planned for installation. Toward the end of April, you'll see the cabin lifted six to seven feet off the ground and landscaping will begin underneath. The two stately pines by the front door? They're staying and they will continue to frame the entryway, although a few of their lower limbs may be coming off. The dockmaster and his son pretty nearly gutted the cabin recently and removed some closets which short-termers won't be needing in order to increase the size of both the bathroom and the bedroom. Over the past few months, we've been scouting the antique stores and flea markets looking for cabiny/fishy finds to adorn the cabin. Cedar shingles for the outer walls should be delivered any day now; the dockmaster is still sourcing wood for the floors and ceiling. The grape vine and fig tree will be unharmed by the renovations, although one cross section of the grape vine may require repositioning.
Many of the slipholders have asked us recently about renovation timeframes and our rental policies. We sure hope to be done by at least the end of May, depending on when we can get all our ducks (i.e., contractors) in a row. As far as cost per night, we haven't really settled on an amount yet. Certainly, though, we'll be competitive with the few local establishments available. Rental fees will probably include an optional "breakfast on the deck" with the dockmaster and weather gal, weather permitting, and fresh veggies from the weather gal's garden. We'll keep you posted, and, as the cabin becomes more photogenic, we'll post photos of the work in progress.
May 19, 2003 - The cabin went up in the air late last week - it was quite a production. We saved you some photos. We've begun clearing "nuisance" trees around the cabin in preparation for landscaping. The dockmaster began removing windows Sunday. We like the modified views from the cabin - they were okay before, but now you can see more water. We'll keep you updated as we continue rehab.
June 12, 2003 - Okay, so perhaps we were a lot overly optimistic about getting the cabin renovated by the end of May! The good news is that the new footings went in yesterday. The dockmaster found an interesting technique for bending rebar - he used the trailer. Al, our mason, and his crew have shown up every few days for the last week or so to work on removing the old cinder block supports, digging holes for the new footings, and finally getting the cement in and leveled. The building inspector has been out, permits issued, and work continues at a good pace. New windows should arrive today or tomorrow, and, once they're in, the cedar shingles that have been making our garage smell so terrific can finally go up. That should get us down to just a few hard weeks' work on the interior and, Voila!, a renovated cabin. Well, and then there's that whole interior decor thing and landscaping, but that really should be quick work compared to the first stages, plus a lot of smaller sub-tasks have already been accomplished over the last six months. We're beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel, er, cabin, er cottage . . . or maybe cabb-age. Still don't know what to call the cabin - is it a cabin, a lodge, a cottage? It's a bit of all three, or will be. I kind of favor calling it the Boonedocks Treehouse, as it gives you that treehouse feeling now that it's up in the air a good ways. With the shingles, though, it will resemble a lodge or maybe a gingerbread house. The decor edges toward the lodgy end of the spectrum. Stay tuned, we'll come up with an appropriate name before the big Open Cabin celebration!
|Dock A at Sunrise in Winter||Dock B at Sunrise in Winter||Air Conditioned Showerhouse||Winter Sunrise at The Boonedocks|
|View from Dock A in Summer||View from Dock B in Summer||Catamaran Slip at Dock A||The Cabin in Summer prior to renovations|
|Old-Style Weather Reports From the Door at the Boonedocks:|
June 12, 2003, 7:00 a.m.:
Bet you thought we'd never do another weather report, eh? It's been a busy two weeks at the Boonedocks - check out the cabin renovations and the Broad Creek Journal to see what we've been up to. We welcomed a new old Morgan to Dock A last week. Plus - the Sundmans were back in town for most of the last two weeks. They're off again on their great adventure, leaving behind blueberries, two bags of shells from Cape Lookout, assorted and most welcome "won't-fit-on-the-boat-don't-need-them-things," and tasty contributions to two Sunday Breakfasts. Each time we see or hear from them, I have to admit to having a bit of sail envy.
Back to the weather, we've had an amazing mix lately, but you already know that, right. So what's in store this weekend?
Depending on which forecast you trust, you can expect between a 10 and 40 percent chance of rain each day until next Thursday. The forecasts I'm most comfortable with call it 10-20 percent over the weekend and 10-30 percent Monday through Thursday. We don't expect, however, that any of the possible storms will last long or carry a great deal of high winds - as opposed to the tree-benders we've been having since the end of May.
Regardless of weather conditions, you're always invited for Breakfast with the Dockmaster, every Sunday at 9:00 a.m.
Got a minute? Try our sometimes-daily-more-often-weekly crossword puzzle.
Hmmmmmm . . . I wonder what the weather was like at dawn on . . .? Boonedocks Time Machine
Half a month nearly gone and it feels like three! Last week we had our first dolphin
sighting in Broad Creek. The dockmaster and I were mighty excited about that - the dolphins were only
about 30 yards off Dock A. We watched them go down the creek towards the Neuse, and when they got to the
fork with Browns Creek, the roiling water and flurry of fins attested to their sound choice of feeding
grounds. It was quite a sight!
The dockmaster saw a black fox (twice) on Fork Point Road.
A giant caterpillar - okay, not giant, but he was 2 inches long - granted us a short visit this week. Really, I probably should have gotten rid of him for good (he's bad news for my plants for sure), but instead I put him in the marsh. I think, sometimes, it's probably best to let old Ma Nature maintain her own balance (except, of course, for mosquitoes and ants - then all bets are off!). The next day, I watched a handsome cardinal fly into the herb garden, drop a suspiciously familiar caterpillar on the mulch for a minute while checking out another likely victim, and then pick him up again and fly off - presumably for a little snack. Old Ma Nature - she comes through every time.
The salamander we evicted from beneath the cabin during the raising has taken up residence in the wood pile. He's basically harmless but does give you a jolt when you come across his kind of ugly mug.
Besides active wildlife watching these first two weeks in June, we've been working like crazy. The dockmaster rented a backhoe/frontloader type thing for a day, and we moved around a bunch of dirt and compost, finally got in a 25-1/2 x 8-foot vegetable garden (corn, zucchini, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, cowpeas, lima beans, dill, canteloupe, and okra are all up and thriving already), installed more flower beds, dug drainage trenches, and, oh, I don't know, other stuff. It was a busy rental day! Then there was all the other work we've been doing on the cabin and the grounds. . .
Somehow, we still managed to get in a bit of "real" work, too, and had a gaggle of teenagers over for two days of envelope stuffing, stamping, and label affixing. In the end, we sent nearly 4000 letters to potential advertisers for the Scout camps guide.
Somehow, even though I updated other people's websites in June, I just didn't get around to our own, and time really does fly here. Just yesterday (was it yesterday?), I opined to a neighbor that my entire concept of timekeeping has changed since our arrival on Broad Creek. I no longer pay so much attention to clocks and calendars; it's the space between the storms and the hours between the rising and setting of the sun that I watch. Our days seem more full and complete, and we're having so much fun that we hardly notice that they're slipping away so fast.
June 12, 2003
|If your Scouting group is passing through the Pamlico County area by canoe, kayak, or car this summer, please accept our invitation to stay the night at the Boonedocks free of charge. We're on Broad Creek, just off the Neuse River, and at the junction of a number of great paddling trails. We can accommodate as many as eight tents, and you are free to use the shower house. We might even make you some pancakes to get you going the next morning with a minimum of fuss. Contact us for more information - we'll even be happy to send you a packet of trip-planning aids, if you'd like (or for as long as our supply holds out). In the BSA world, you'll find we're a 20-minute drive from Pamlico Seabase and the Bonner Scout Reservation and just a bit farther from Camps Bower and Tuscarora. We're near the Crystal Coast, maritime museums, an estuarium(!), and, of course, Pamlico Sound and the Neuse. With dozens of things to do, trails to paddle, and sights to see, our location is a perfect starting, stopover, or end point to a memorable trip, and it would be our pleasure to host your group.|