Thursday, 8 August 2013

Great Excavations

My jaw dropped when I saw the rest of the Little Blue House exposed. There is now a great, waterless moat surrounding the house. Our contractor and his team of diggers, along with a local backhoe operator, have created this trench around the LBH. They've done an amazing job so far.

The Moat

When I looked at the exterior wall of the master bedroom, I was appalled, although not surprised. We knew there was a big problem in that room, which is why we had started gutting it from the inside. A corner of the floor felt spongy underfoot and had been an obvious ingress point for mice in the past. From the outside, once the wall was exposed, I could see that the damage was extensive. The beams underneath the floor joists are rotten, and the wood just crumbles when you touch it.

Our contractor made a suggestion... he raised the idea of excavating from the inside of the LBH! Since the beams are rotten, along with some of the joists, the floor would have to be replaced anyways (in the master bedroom). The notion of excavating from the inside, as well as from the front and sides of the house, was something I had not considered previously. The house is sitting on clay and the room available for hand excavation is very limited, so this idea had merit. We decided to go for it.
Exterior Wall of Master Bedroom

The team started to remove the floor and continue excavating, and they are making pretty quick work of it now. I was sad to see the fir floor being ripped up, as we had hoped to refinish it (it was hidden underneath linoleum. Our contractor showed me the flooring and how it had been damaged from being so damp, so I guess it wasn't worth saving. At least the flooring in the parlour and kitchen will be saved; it's all hidden under lino, too.

Out Comes the Floor!

The picture above was taken yesterday afternoon, just after our contractor started from the inside.


Here is the bedroom as of this afternoon. It is interesting, and alarming, to see that when we stood upon the bedroom floor, our feet were less than a foot away from the earth. The bare, damp, un-vapour-barriered, un-insulated, mousy earth. No wonder it was so damp and cold in there!

The other fascinating discovery is that the ground underneath the far corner of the room is absolutely covered in a thick layer of broken glass! It appears to be liquor bottles, all broken, with some rusted metal strapping that perhaps used to hold the bottles together? One of the guys working commented that maybe there used to be a liquor store where our house is now. So perhaps prior to the last fire that destroyed much of Atlin, this was the place to come for booze!

That seems fitting, since after that, it was the site of a brothel. Alcohol, debauchery, what next?

No comments:

Post a Comment