At Lowes?! Isn’t it the case that in virtually any store (Ace Hardware excluded) and when you ask an employee for assistance to find a particular item, it is more likely than not you get to observe that employees’ impromptu on the job training session as they drag you along on what amounts to an Easter egg hunt.
Colorado thunderstorms are renowned for the size of hail stones they can spit out, the volume of thunder they can produce and the velocity of wind they can generate. I’ve said many times how Colorado weather is an adventure in meteorology. It was one of those adventurous Colorado thunderstorms that blew down my fence; snapped off five four by four posts in howling concert.
A Lowes home improvement big box store is five minutes from the house – two minutes when you cut through the back of Target, Toys-R-Us and a string of leaser known stores. With the wife riding shotgun and Molly the dog in the spacious back of our ’94 Aerostar, we blasted off for Lowes.
Did you know you can bring you dog inside the store? If that dog is a Mexican Chihuahua he or she will be able to read the signage in their native tongue! Being a white guy, that always annoyed me – so politically correct. I digress. I had not passed three isles of quality Lowes products when a tall English speaking and equally white guy approached me and suggested he could help in finding whatever it was I might be looking for. “No way hoser!” I exclaimed. “I don’t want to follow your around this store and watch you do what I was going to do anyway; search for it”. This well kempt gentleman just smiled (a younger employee would have gotten his feeling hurt) and politely asked me to describe my needs.
“I’ve pulled out my old fence post cement footings, which left a huge hole that I don’t want to use double and triple amounts of cement when it comes time to putting in new fence posts. The preacher, my neighbor, tells me there is some kind of cardboard I can use to put in the hole and contain the cement.”
“Right this way sir, I have just what you need.”
OMG! I’m being escorted directly to a collection of cardboard tubes that are absolutely perfect for the job.
“The QUIKRETE 8-in Concrete Forming Tube is just what you need. If your putting your fence posts two feet deep, which I recommend, you can cut them in half and save money.”
My wife Jan Baby and I spent about six hours spread over two days cutting the tubes into two foot lengths, digging about five holes that were too shallow, adding the tubes, backfilling the dirt, setting in and leveling the posts. Finally, we just added water to the Quickcrete which turned it into cement; VOIAL! New fence posts were up. That was the easy part. My decision to remove the old fence in panel instead of taking it completely apart was a poor one. Jan Baby and I estimate that we spent more time trying to get the panels in that it would have taken to just nail individual boards back into place.