Archive for January, 2009

Trust in the Trusses!

January 20, 2009

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Never in my mind has walking away ever been an option. But it seems that most of the public have had a bit of doubt as to the reality that the Rock Cafe would actually be rebuilt. I discovered this yesterday as the crew with the help of Jimmy Miller’s boom truck and the experience of the operator, David Henniger were lifting the trusses into place. We had several of my friends and others st0pping by to express their excitement and voice their concern that they didn’t really think this was going to happen.  I’m thrilled to say the day was extremely easy and we even squeezed in some time to celebrate Martin Luther King day!  David, Terry, & Mark have been working on the trusses for a few weeks. They are built extremely  tough!! Not to bore everyone with details, lets just leave it at the trusses are up making the Rock that much closer to being ready to open by late spring.

Template for the trusses

Template for the trusses

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Mark being himself-perplexed at Terry's skills 🙂

 

The trusses on the ground. No one in the town was very excited until they started getting into the air!

The trusses on the ground. No one in the town was very excited until they started getting into the air!

 

Trusses getting off ground headed over Rock wall

Trusses getting off ground headed over Rock wall

 

Woo Hoo-Safely over wall and being lowered into place

Woo Hoo-Safely over wall and being lowered into place

Easy Easy...don't hit Mark in the head

Easy Easy...don't hit Mark in the head

Terry putting trusses in place

Terry putting trusses in place

David couldn't help but get in the air ... this truss scared me & Blaque(friend of Alexis) because we were standing close when it fell on scaffolding! No danger just loud bang

David couldn't help but get in the air ... this truss scared me & Blaque(friend of Alexis) because we were standing close when it fell on scaffolding! No danger just loud bang

This is the stand by crew. Most of the day this is what they did but when we needed them it was great to have them. Surprise...like normal with our teenagers! They are Alexis, Levi(in hat), and Blaque!! Thanks for your help even though Blaque moaned about being cold.

This is the stand by crew. Most of the day this is what they did but when we needed them it was great to have them. Surprise...like normal with our teenagers! They are Alexis, Levi(in hat), and Blaque!! Thanks for your help even though Blaque moaned about being cold.

Levi & Blaque moving trusses to be easily strapped to boom truck.

Levi & Blaque moving trusses to be easily strapped to boom truck.

Blaque bored literally between job duties. He does have jokes though! Alexis loves them.

Blaque bored literally between job duties. He does have jokes though! Alexis loves them.

Terry's family came for a site visit today. His youngest, Brody, laying down on the job. It's hard to oversee your dad working! You need a break from it.

Terry's family came for a site visit today. His youngest, Brody, laying down on the job. It's hard to oversee your dad working! You need a break from it.

Both moms, myself & Shelley, thought our boys would be really impressed with the boom truck activity. But the sand pile won out!! Landon. Brody, and Paul all played here practically ignoring the truck.

Both moms, myself & Shelley, thought our boys would be really impressed with the boom truck activity. But the sand pile won out!! Landon. Brody, and Paul all played here practically ignoring the truck.

Landon & Paul abandoned the sand pile once I told them about the fort in the cane! They spent the rest of their day making it homey.

Landon & Paul abandoned the sand pile once I told them about the fort in the cane! They spent the rest of their day making it homey.

 

Mark hard at work...so is his work easy or does he do hard work easily??

Mark hard at work...so is his work easy or does he do hard work easily??

Once David got up in the air - the trusses went up quickly. The stand-by crew stood below and hooked up the trusses to boom truck, moved scaffolding, handed nails out ect.

Once David got up in the air - the trusses went up quickly. The stand-by crew stood below and hooked up the trusses to boom truck, moved scaffolding, handed nails out ect.

The stand-by crew on duty running errands. Lex got out easy. Levi & Blaque did most of the work. The little their was for them to do. But it did speed things up quite a bit.

The stand-by crew on duty running errands. Lex got out easy. Levi & Blaque did most of the work. The little their was for them to do. But it did speed things up quite a bit.

 

So – Since the passerbyers seemed so impressed with the erection of these trusses. I felt this story best told in pictures. The sum of it is that we felt great that it went so smooth and this project can really start moving now. It’s beginning to be so much fun and have an everyday Rock Cafe feel to it. Except for the fact that I’m not making money I’m spending it- I could do this all the time. I am loving the people I’m working with and the days seem to pass quickly. I hope anyone reading this feels free to stop by and spend some time with us.

2009 Full of Promise & Hope

January 8, 2009
New Years Eve on the Main Street of America!!

New Years Eve on the Main Street of America!!

As revelers across Route 66 have done for years and years, Stroud has a NYC style celebraton where they close down their 4 block stretch of this famed road where at Midnight a ball drop of a mess of wrapped chrismas lights with little to no organization falls from the sky elevated up by the local Fire Truck!  There is no other way then this to ring in a New Year!! So much so that several local familys and their out of town friends are sure not to miss. This year my best friend’s family joined us as did Fred’s local best friend. It was fun except that we had some Teenie Drama that won’t ever be forgotten. Hence the red faced Alexis that missed out on her first New Years Kiss due to an average teenie miscommunication! Something that will surely haunt her every year from here. I’m happy she bravely posed for this picture at a moment when she felt like it was the end of her world.  Besides that small snag, What a Year its shaping up to be!!

 

I know so many have sent cards and such to express concern and support for the Rock Cafe progress. Many have contacted me and wanted an update on this blog! As of my last blog, (laughing) a big blow to the project happened when I realized that although I appreciated the quickness to the stabilization of the building upon the first few days. The construction company was not as good a fit for this project as I originally thought. The Rock Cafe has always been about unexpected superior quality at an affordable price provided by individuals willing to share their life and experience with liberties to intergrate their talents and very fabric of who they are into the work they are providing. In most cases, that was food and service. It was my dream to have that type of work in the rebuilding process. Therefore, I set out interviewing individuals in hopes to find this person or group of persons!! I went into sort of a introvert type of personality during these weeks because it was difficult for my family, banker, friends, over-concerned individuals(Jerry Murfin), and press to understand what I was trying to achieve. Its difficult to even write about. By any means  Idid not want to trash this construction firm who had been there when I needed them. At any rate, I would make phone calls on Mondays and meet with people throughout the week and got alot of No’s, Maybe’s, and Yes’s but could not find that special person until a lead finally paid off.  A historic preservationist, David Burke of davidshistoricpreservation.vpweb.com, was recommended and I hesitated on calling because of his title “Historic Preservation”. I felt he may be out of my price range. Once I contacted him a match was made! David and his wife, Linda, had an immediate impression on me and my children and I knew we had our team leader!

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David and Linda are from Perry, Oklahoma and know all to well about the exciting life in a small town. They restore antiques and have some amazing stories about this venture. They both are activists for preservation and lead lifes that will be shared throughout the rest of the Rock Cafe history. They are now a part of this building and its lore forever more. As far as my working relationship with him, its been a typical adventure as is my style. We work side by side making decisions on how to progress with the building. He keeps me informed as to his way of doing the restoration but always asks for my opinions and concerns. He even lets me and the kidos help around. Mainly, I sweep!! And the kids have done very little but have been there very importantly standing.  David even came to the job with his own wooden handled straw broom!! The only kind one needs to work on this site. Everyone knows how I love straw brooms! He has made some great discoveries in the history of this building and we will be sharing those with you as we progress. David has a friend he works with by the name of  Terry! We also found a friend of both of ours through different avenues-mine being local friend and his being fellow antique dealer-his name is Mark!! These 3 men,David-Terry-Mark, should be sent thank yous and salutations as well because they are going to be responsible for literally breathing new life & soul into this historic structure! They work together like family & friends not holding anyone more important than the other and recognizing that my family is their family and visitors who stop are shown around as if they are also decision makers and family as well!!

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Terry is a skilled carpenter who works on new construction while David is the preservationist. Terry knows all the newest products and is a big help in finding ways of doing things. He is a family man who is always talking about his wife and children!! We love that and I know he’s a great dad because he is great with my kids. He teases Alexis alot and always tries to get her out of doing some of the heavy lifting I ask her to do. (of course, she owes him a few batches of cookies for this)  He is also always getting Paul to help him and teaching him how to use the tools. Not to mention, keeping tabs on where Paul is at! You know that is his responsibility as construction manager! Just kidding! But this lets you know that the same feel you received for food & service is also taking place in the reconstruction!

Mark, well what can you say about him. He seems to be 7 ft tall and has what seems to be 6ft long dreadlocks! Mark is a friend of mine from the Rock Cafe. We both migrated back to our family roots in Lincoln County from far off worlds. Myself from the adventures across the globe on cruise ships and he from the fast lane in Los Angeles. His father is jazz producer, Miles Grayson. So its easy to understand his laid back Rasta Man attitude. Some Route 66’s may remember his mother, owner of PJ’s BBQ. Mark isn’t the sort of character one expects to be in Lincoln County and that makes him a perfect fit for the Rock Cafe and our family friend. He is married to Carol and she is also great. I thank her for thinking of me and sending me gifts from time to time. Mark is a wealth of knowledge so much so I sometimes question his grand stories but only in a joking manner. Its always the same story never judge a person on what you think someone should look like and always leave your heart open to all sorts of personalitys because one never knows when true friendship will be discovered and what that person may look like!

This team is working with my local suppliers therefore, my electrician, my heat & air guy, and who could forget the plumber are all getting to help in this process. The most famous and seen on site everyday and making decisions and suggestions alongside the 3 of us is local, Jerry Murfin. Most will know him and those who don’t have not been to the Rock more than once. He is a permanent fixture and invalued friend. We will save his story for his own blog entry!

Again your support is greatly appreciated and I can see light at the end of the tunnell! If anyone cares to venture out; gawkers are welcome and if you see one of these three men don’t hesitate to thank them and ask any question of them. They love it! They work Monday – Friday on site and do so almost as long as the Rock was open during regular business hours. I will leave you with a poem I discovered the last few days from The Route 66 Hip Pocket Trip! Poems by Joel Nash

The Rock Cafe

It’s a family affair

at the Rock Cafe

in Stroud, Oklahoma

mother

and daughter

cooking and

running the place

and today the

little daughter

of daughter

was there, too.

Mr. and Mrs.

came in for lunch

Mr.

being the master plumber and

restorer of magic cars

including a baby blue convertible

right at home

in front of the Rock

but before dawn

on this day

he had to put down

their dying dog

Mrs. had red teary eyes

Mr. was a little choked up, too

but he said

“You kno, I was raised on a farm.

I know how to do these things.”

When you walk in the front door

of  The Rock Cafe

you join the family