Monday, September 6, 2010

Many hands make light work . . .

I remember hearing about how in the past folks would gather together to help one and another, to accomplish something with many hands that would have been hard, if not impossible, to do alone.  Specifically I am referring to the old Barn Raising events.  As my 4th grade history told it, folks would come from all around on the appointed day.  Men would show up with their work cloths and gloves, the women with their favorite food.  Kids would run and play, and a few of those old enough would help with 'the work'.  It was always sunny and never too hot.  After some planning and thinking and talking the time would arrive and with many hands the pre-assembled portions of the barn would be 'Raised' and pinned into place.  Once accomplished there was still lots of work to do until the structure was completed, but this critical step benefited, in fact needed, the help of everyone.  And then the food and good company would continue for some time.
Yes, it seemed a magical event to a 10 year old; and one that I myself would never experience (today the many hands are replaced by one hydraulic assisted crane).
However - - -
Barns are not the only thing that can benefit from Many Hands.  It is perhaps easy to imagine that when building a boat, and specifically the boat hull, it is easer to do so 'up side down'.  In this way when installing the planks and painting the hull one simply has to bend down, opposed to lift up and work over ones head.  In fact most one-off boats (and some production)  are always built upside down - up to a size where one can figure out a way to Turn the Hull.  So, it was yesterday that Kristi and I joined a Hull Turning event.
An Email group that I follow Messabout focuses on smaller simple craft.  Brian had just completed the hull of his new "Lily Pad" boat and put out a Call for All Hands.  After some Email exchanges, Kristi and I motored up to Oregon City where we were given a ride to Brian's house.  What a hoot - there were about 15 folks there, lots of talking, thinking, planning, and then the work (about 5 minutes worth) to Turn the Hull.   And then more talking, great food and great folks.  

We even ended up getting a ride in a converted US Navy Whale Boat!
Perhaps not as big as a Barn, but in the end it was just like my 4th grade history - it was all about people, just happened to be that there was also a few minutes of work where Many Hands could get involved.

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