“Ancestral home” is such a relative term in our family. I’m not sure why but ties have often been easily severed in our clan, whether by distance or feuds. The nearest I can cite as our ancestral property is a piece of land and a house which has since been modified–and which we now intend to sell to some close kin.
As such, I’ve decided to make a historical family base out of the house I grew up knowing to be our country home: the house my grandparents built.
It’s a 1950’s house built in the style that was probably in vogue then. It hasn’t been given the kind of loving it should have received and now I’m making it my personal goal to restore and reinforce it so it can last another 50 years, at least.
I asked my aunt to have the ceiling removed to expose the beams so we could see how much we would need to replace and/or reinforce. The discovery of what I had to deal with was rather disconcerting:
Termite damage is the major issue but if you’re sharp enough, you may have noticed something else. Hint: take a good look at the support structure.
The original house was narrower than the one I grew up in. At some point, an entire wing was added and the roof was not properly, fully supported.
The original area of the house is the area underneath the well-supported portion of ceiling. And then the west wing was added after. And then the kitchen was added. Then the balcony. If I recall the order correctly. The point being, as good a mason my grandfather was, well, age caught up with the house. And yes, termites.
I’ve already devised the plan on how to deal with it, I just need to be here when the changes are made to make sure it’s all done to the specs I want.
Life, eh? Here’s hoping I do my grandparents proud on the restoration!