High School Dating…

December 29, 2011

Construction blogging is like high school dating.  You flirt, you kiss for the first time, and then all of a sudden you have nothing to say to each other.  Yes, hard to imagine but I have run out of clever things to say about wood framing, Marvin windows and drywall.

In truth, quite a bit of drama unfurled at the Woods Hole Inn as we hurdled towards 2012.  But I can’t really go into it in any detail without hurting feelings or pissing people off.  There was the fight over an 8 foot hole in the roof (abated), the struggles with NStar (we gave up), the drama of the chimney flues (unnecessary) and the saga of crumbling masonry (ongoing).  There were highs and lows, and suffice it to say that so far, the highs have it. Could I really ask for more than that?

The sub trades came and went.  I met with the contractor and architect weekly.  The bills came monthly and I kept a difibrulator in the office in case of heart attack.  (Wow, stuff is expensive on Cape Cod! )  The bank visited to be sure we are actually spending the money they lend us for the building.  There are cautionary tales told, about borrowers who bough Ferrari’s instead (hmmm) and people over 90 days in default (oooh, that sounds uncomfortable).

But we plowed onward.  The wind blew yesterday, too hard for the roofers which was a disappointment as it was otherwise fortuitous :  clear, dry and not too cold.  We are gunning for the “rough framing, plumbing and electric inspection,”  the first big step toward completion.  After we pass that, then we can insulate, sprinkler and drywall.   It’s all downhill from there with finish carpentry, painting and decorating.  Sounds easy, huh.   And here is what you came for, the photos of progress and action as of late December 2012:

Construction at the Woods Hole Inn, December 2011

We struggled with Marvin Windows as their lead time is much longer than other companies, and they are pricey.  But they look really nice once installed.  If they last a nice long time in the salt spray, I will be happy.  Call me in fifteen years.

Woods Hole Inn windows installed, December 2011

And the views through those windows.   Wow…

View from the Woods Hole Inn as the ferry lands on a windy December day.By late afternoon yesterday the wind was howling and it was clear why the roofers decided to wait a day as this ferry was swept sideways trying to get into it’s slip.

Woods Hole Inn December 2011Taken from the street on Christmas Eve, here is the Woods Hole Inn in late afternoon light.

Thanks for following along and see you all this summer…


  1. dabodog

    I chronicled the headaches of rebuilding my house after the fire in a blog. Running 30% over budget was huge… I’m STILL recovering from it all. I’m sure Cape Cod is bad enough, but consider if the workmen either miss their boat or their boat is cancelled… yeah, it’s worse when the workmen live off island. Keep thinking ahead to the finished product, it’s all worth it!

    1. Thanks for the encouragement. Yes, harder out on Martha’s Vineyard for sure! What was your blog- is it still up? I’d love to read it.

      1. dabodog

        While this post is part of a series, it deals with some of the construction woes that I was dealing with in an already difficult time.

  2. dvsjr

    I had a friend who calmly told me his plan of building out an old manufacturing building in Cambridge making a new office for his design company. A few weeks later that same friend looked like he’d had malaria with a pinch of hysteria. Planning the lead times for the different crews, costs, problems most did him in. I think everyone experiences this.

    1. Thankfully I have a competent General Contractor who has **knock wood, so far** kept the trains running on time. I look forward to giving you a tour in the spring. Just come by any time! Thanks for the encouragement.

  3. Reply

    Great post. Woods Hole is a great area and I’m lucky that I live close enough to take a 30-minute drive to enjoy the sights and sounds whenever the notion hits me. Your post is interesting in that it’s presented from a construction perspective, which is completely unique for me. Nice photos too!

    Thanks for sharing this with the rest of us.


    1. Thanks Kevin – come visit us one day!   Woods Hole Inn 508-495-0248 https://www.woodsholeinn.com my blog: http://www.woodsholeinn.wordpress.com follow me on facebook: tinyurl.com/whifacebook


      1. Will do. I’ll be sure to stop in the next time I’m in the area!

        Happy New Year!


  4. Michael J. Cain

    I’m a big fan of V&V Construction. I use to work for a painting contractor who use to paint all there work. All I can say is They are the best! You are in good hands with A.Vidal. He is an ace builder in all he does. You should see his own furniture building shop in his home, Awesome! He can do anything when it comes to building. Heck he’s built most of the banks in Falmouth and surrounding areas. I’m so sure the New Woodshole in will be quite remarkable when he’s done.

  5. Richard

    Have you ever considered mounting a webcam on the side of the Inn and making a video feed available to the public? Something like the view in the next to last photo above, looking across at the Steamship Authority building, would be particularly appealing (and even potentially useful to people wanting to see if the ferry has come in).

    For such a hotbed of academia and technology, Woods Hole is surprisingly underserved by webcams. The one that still exists is somewhat behind the times. And not to sound mercenary about this, but a “Woods Hole Inn ferry terminal webcam” would also be a good publicity tool. Surely the advertising value might help offset any installation and maintenance costs?

    1. Hi Richard — Funny you should mention it! Yes, I am in the process of figuring this out. It is quite pricey as the exterior camera capable of withstanding the weather in that location is not cheap, plus the installation and the software. But I am planning on putting this up on the woodsholeinn.com website soon, and it will also be available on woodshole.com. I do think that will be useful to many. Drop by and visit sometime. best — Beth

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