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©May 1999

Carol Jane Remsburg






The seed of the fruit that began during our home renovation nearly two years ago finally came to fruition yesterday.  The eccentric man that I married some 18 odd years ago decided he wanted a cupola on the house with a weathervane.  It’s when he said ‘weathervane’ that I began to pay attention.  I had to look up the word ‘cupola’ because it isn’t one of those comfortably familiar words.  Even then, he had to draw me a picture.


I thought the idea was, well, perhaps a tad pretentious for our tiny little house.  Still, the idea of a weathervane with a landing goose was kinda cool.  As the renovation came and went along with all our funds, the cupola sat gathering dust in the garage.  The weathervane we wanted was just too much for our budget.  Little did I realize that you can nickel and dime yourself into something much more expensive than a little ol’ bronze weathervane. 


Actually, we had some heated debates over exactly which weathervane we would choose if we could.  Me, I like the nautical stuff along with the waterfowl indigenous to our area.  Hubby, on the other hand, had made me locate some truly bizarre ones on the Internet.  There was one he liked very much, ‘When Pigs Fly,’ which featured a flying pig.  Sorry, other than in cute kiddy movies or as food fare, I am not so fond of the porcine family that I want it mounted atop my house.  Yet, it is a thumb in the eye to those that would have sworn our marriage would never last.  They just thought I was the weird one, hubby is quiet so you don’t notice it right off.


Months passed as more dust gathered on the cupola.  My spouse got itchy over it.  He couldn’t let it alone.  Then, he began to work up different ideas that might actually be palatable for me.  The very instant he mentioned a ‘clock’ I knew it was just right.  This man has bought more clock kits and movements than most wholesalers have.  Our tiny abode is filled with clocks where some work and some don’t, but they can sure be noisy when they all go off at once.  There are times he sets this up only to give me such an innocent look as the cacophony becomes deafening.  So, to place a clock on the house was about the only thing that truly fit.  Besides, he had the inner workings already in the garage.  How he was going to trick it out, was another story.  Just remember that my ‘forward’ thinking can at times be deceptive.  This is a man who truly believes that the more expensive something is the better it is.  And, quite honestly, most often, you do get what you pay for, but there are limits.


Then came words like, copper flashing (read $$$$), a machined circle of steel for the clock face (more $$$), the glass was okay, but then, then came the circle of neon, custom fit (now read $$$$$).  The miscellaneous stuff like the chains, bolts, special woods, and paint for the base and tower were reasonably priced.  He also figured out a way to remove it when a bad storm was predicted. 


Oh, and did I mention the finial?  Yep, that’s another one of those funny words that I needed a picture for.  Just think small-scale spire (more $$$$).  He’d better doggone well ground that puppy and make it into a lightning rod when it arrives or I’m moving.  We’ll be the only ones in the area with a welcome mat out for lightning and we’ve already suffered two strikes over the last eleven years without any help at all. 


Still, this idea was a great one.  I was willing to write the checks and cringe.  Finally the day came.  He and two other family members began early in the day to rip part of my roof off and build the base.  I’m not sure where you were yesterday, but it was hot.  It was hotter on the roof.  They worked diligently with few breaks.  I’d begun to worry by 6:30 PM that it might not happen in one day.  A last minute scrambling over the anchoring was dealt with.  Then, our tiny tower was erected, the neon circlet mounted, and the copper cap put into place—just as the sun set.


The clock time was set and then all was powered up.  Our little clock glowed like a beacon of blue.  Even last night’s full moon had some competition as the passersby slowed to catch a glimpse of the unusual.  So, if you do pass by, give us a beep.  We’ll send you a wave—and you’ll always know what time it is.  Ding-Dong!



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