Homestead Losing Roof No. 2
2016. Pastel on sandpaper. 11-1/8 x 13-7/8 in.
from Additional Dimensions: Disappearance and the Homesteads of the Mojave
All things in their appointed time. Cooling in the studio, apparently, is not appointed at this time. Several more hurdles have been surmounted, the professional was out here this morning and everything with the new unit is good to go, but now we find that the 220 circuit we believed was in place was…not there, after all.
Have I ever posted on here about where I live? It’s in the Mojave desert – the lower, dryer, harsher parts of the Mojave. I live in an old homestead community, where most of the homes started out as “jackrabbit” kits that went up almost overnight (mine retailed for $4000 complete back in the day) and were made just as well as you would expect. Many were then added onto by homeowners who may have been creative and resourceful but mostly were not experienced, certainly not professional; had little in the way of money; and had no interest in building codes. Over the years desert conditions took these hopeful if unpromising starts and beat, wore on, and undermined them. When repairs were needed those creative and resourceful homeowners, still with little in the way of money, kluged something together or paid a local neighbor (who may have more or less experience) to kluge something together for them. The miracle is that things work as well as they do. But every new repair or improvement is a voyage of discovery through layers of kluging and jerry-rigging that may have no resemblance to general building standards and practices.
And so I find myself now, over two months since the effort began to replace the cooling in the studio, still without cooling. This is in spite of heroic efforts on the part of my installer and today the ministrations and ultimate resounding thumbs-up of the HVAC pro. So it is only now, with lift-off in sight, that this latest Wonder Valley electrical “creative construction” is discovered. And the rocket remains limply on the launch-pad.
We will now be digging a new circuit across the yard (and do not underestimate what digging means through layers of caliche and clay). And then? Perhaps I’ll have cooling. But I suspect by then the easing temperatures of oncoming fall may render the matter moot. Anyway. One way or another, I will be back to full speed in the studio within a month, I dare to predict.