A Thousand Dollar Cross
On a beautiful site looking out over Sturgeon Lake, somewhat North of Peterborough, we were just finishing up the work of the Graham’s period log house. Though not overly large, it was a beauty, just the size for a cozy cottage. We had designed all the amenities cottagers would ever want. The Mrs. got her dream cottage kitchen and with some extra logs, Ted got a nice log garage that may become a guest cottage too, a small one. In the end, he decided to have it built onto their house in Orono.
Ed had just finished the hearth and fireplace surround and had the flues finished to the basement wood stove. He was working on the exterior brickwork, not without the discomfort provided by the neighboring poison ivy that caught him unawares in the woods.
He refrained from mentioning how and where he was negligent and where the itch persisted. He was about halfway up the wall with his brickwork when his chinking assistant came to him with a mess. Some of the foam got into his hair and he was using some foul-smelling chemical in his attempts to get it out. Of course, it’s just a part of the deconstruction process. But there are just two small hazards that you never quite expect.
One day, with progress moving as it does, Mrs. Graham came over (just in time) to ask Ed for a favor, a favor for which, if Ed was able to comply, she was willing to generously reward him. She had noticed the various colors of brick we often use, mixing them together to come up with the early look of a brick wall, or in this case, a brick chimney. It was the yellow brick I suppose that gave her the idea. She asked if he could create a golden cross somewhere up high on the chimney.
Well, that was a new one for Ed. But there was nothing Ed couldn’t do with bricks, stone, or mortar. I’m sure he said No, he didn’t have the gold to do that but he did have some yellow bricks that might accomplish the task. Mrs. Graham thought that would do nicely and Ed proceeded to lay it up as she requested. His patron was delighted. It did give the chimney a unique touch. You could even say it looked divine. Ed was all smiles when he humbly pocketed a piece of paper with a lot of zeros on it.