At this very moment, there are guys on the roof finishing up on laying in the new tiles, with the conclusion promised for tomorrow. There’s another guy working on the awning at the back of the house. And a cleaning crew is doing some gussying up in the wake of the two pugs who camped out here while their owners vacationed in Hawaii (we’re so sweet). And so it has been for about a week and a half, give or take, with at least someone with a tool in his hands.

All good, and we’re looking forward to the new sheen on the hacienda. But more than anything, we’re looking forward to the peace and quiet. The pups can be fun, but they do awake at about five in the morning for their “walk,” and you are well advised to see that they get it. Given that neither is yet housebroken, the penalties are obvious, plus they seem to enjoy the company, day or night.

And if they are not in action, the people on the roof are. We were forewarned about the noise, but not that it would be ongoing for almost a week. First the stripping, down to the last tile. Then the positioning of sheets of plywood, with the pounding of hammers for almost two full days. Then the application of paper, beat into place with pneumatic hammers. And finally, the new tiles.

Then, to make the whole operation more entertaining, something bit me on my left foot three days ago and I’m still doing my impression of Walter Brennan this morning.

I mean Yikes!!

So. The joys of home ownership (for Kris), and the joys of working at home (mine). About four years ago I decided to close the door on corporate life and seek the life of a real writer (a work in progress), with boundless clients around the globe (also a work in progress). And that, as is the case with most contract writers, means that home base is, in fact, home. Good stuff, really. The office is across the hall from the bedroom and right beside the bathroom, and the kitchen is just down the hall. And more, the neighborhood is very quiet, with howling dogs somewhere else.

I like it. No complaints. Really.

Until General Motors decided to move in. And I decided to walk around the house like Chester from the old “Gunsmoke” show.

So what have we learned? Go away. Go far away. Let the professionals who do what they do, do what they do. Find a cheap place by the beach and hang out there until the dust has settled. Take the old laptop and do my thing wherever there’s an outlet. Let Kris fly when she needs to.

But I suppose I’m mostly thinking about myself. For many years I flew solo, and what needed to be done to wherever I was hanging my hat was accomplished by other people while was at the office. Somebody else’s problem, somebody else’s money. In a way it was like the elves and the shoes. You come home, and viola, the job’s done. Here its decidedly more personal. And I really have to say that for Kris it amounts to fun, and certainly ranks as a feeling of accomplishment.

I mean, really: you should see her out there, hands on hips and shouting out directions. That’s hardly a bad thing. The guys seem to enjoy it.