As an in ground fiberglass pool builder of sixteen years, I had lost empathy for my customers and some of their concerns. Concerns such as pet issues, disruption of daily potty routines for pets, I used to laugh inside and shrug it off, saying well you've got to break some eggs to make an omelet. My views quickly changed when I sat on the other side of the fence and built my pool. Keep in mind that Fiber Glass pools can be completely installed in four to ten days not counting landscaping, this is much quicker than sixty days it takes for conventional gunite or Concrete pools.
My wife was quick to point out to me on the second day of construction, that I was quickly coming un raveled at the seams. I am a neat nick the and the brunt of many jokes at my home, my family's nick name for me is Monk, an O. C. D. Detective on TV that likes cleanliness and order. Well, the cleanliness and order went out the window as soon an excavation began. The amount of dirt and dust that gets into your home is horrific. The first thing I noticed was the next morning when I let my Golden lab and miniature schnauzer out to go to the bathroom. There was the goofy look on their face as they stood frozen in place looking at their territory that now looked like a mine field in a war zone.
I am unsure what goes through a dogs mind, but I know what wasn't going through their body. I stood there for fifteen minutes waiting for them to do their business but they wouldn't go. Lets just say we had some extra cleaning inside the house. We had temporary fence installed during construction, my kids let the dogs out and they got out of the back yard. Fortunately, we had my phone number on the dog tags. I got a call and went and picked the dogs up. Then when they did come in they would track lots of dirt in with them. I wish I would have put them in Doggie day care. It would have been easier on me and maybe the Dogs.
Now, lets talk about the kids. I am a father of six kids,four boys and two girls, so my nerves are already shot. But those kids were so darn excited about this pool they almost drove me over the edge. When is it going to get done, when can I have a party, when can we swim, so whats the game plan? They where blowing up pool floats as soon as the shovel took its first scoop of dirt out of the ground..They also love to climb on the piles of dirt and jump in and out of the hole that was dug. This creates more dirt in the house and plenty of dirty clothes, especially socks for some reason my kids love to wear socks out side with no shoes. Thank God the weather was dry, so dry that when the machines kept moving around it created a super fine dust that seemed to be on every piece of furniture in my home and my neighbors homes.
Had we got rain it would have been worse. I have been in construction since 1976 and there is nothing like the peanut butter consistency of clay when it rains. It sticks to every thing and you just cant seem to wash it off, it has to wear off on its own. Any one who has ever worked in construction can attest to this by the ten pound boots they have to drag around when it rains and the clay gets stuck to your boots. So my house is trashed, my kids are driving me crazy, my dogs are a mess, then there is the neighbors. Every one has one neighbor that is so far up in everyone's business is hard to comprehend. They let you know about every piece of dirt on the street, the noise levels, and God forbid a school bus goes on their grass because that is your fault as well.
The point I am making, any construction project in your home can and probably will be stressful, I think some times people and myself included are blinded, and think just because you are building some thing that will or is supposed to bring pleasure it should not be a stressful to accomplish. I am not sure I am glad I know this. Sometimes Ignorance is truly bliss. The fact that I now will have empathy for my clients can't hurt. We as humans some how have a short memory, my back yard is finished, the landscaping is complete and we are enjoying our back yard paradise. We had my daughters sixteenth birthday party and had about thirty-five kids in the pool. They had a blast. One thing to point out is getting sixteen year old boys and girls in a pool can be a logistical nightmare. I realized this at midnight when I had to go out and turn the lights and pump off to get a couple of young neckers out. I was hoping I didn't have to get the garden hose out and spray them with cold water to break them apart. These kids in Texas are pretty respectful and they got the message. The party was over.
Building a pool can be stressful and I am glad I built a Viking Fiberglass pool because of the short construction time and very low maintainance. I don't spend over ten minutes a week working on this pool. I grew up with a pool, I am fifty-two now, and my dad passed away about four years ago. I will never forget the memories with my Dad as a little boy swimming, jumping off his shoulders and getting dunked under water by my older brother. I will never forget these memories as long as I live. I hope my kids remember the same memories when I'm gone. I have been blessed to have many things in this life, Boats, cottages, cottages on lakes, snowmobiles, motorcycles, motor homes, living in communities with pools. But I have never had anything that has created so much relaxation, pure enjoyment and bonding with my family as my own pool right out my back door.
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