The new front porch/deck is "done." Done as in: you can walk on it, sit on the new furniture, jump up and down, and even lean on the railing. I still need to add railing near the front door (on the opposite side of the deck) and do a little landscape work, but right now it's too damn hot.
I wanted to build a porch/deck for two reasons:
1. Aimee always wanted a front porch.
2. This is my house now, and by God, I'll build a damn porch if I want.
Our neighborhood is relatively "porch" free. This saddens me. It's an older neighborhood (most houses built in the early '60s), but not old enough to be part of the grand American porch tradition. The lack of front porches is a sorry development in residential architecture. I'm thrilled to have one.
I remember moving into the neighborhood--how Aimee lamented not knowing the neighbors like those she did when she was a girl. Eleven years later, I know the neighbors (most of them), well. They were there when Aimee died, swooping in to clean up the house and take care of things.They've been there through many ups and downs for over a decade.
The porch/deck isn't much--but it's enough. I can listen to the rustle of leaves from my pin oak and fire maple. I can wave to the neighbors as they drive by. I can sit and remember good times with my wife and dream of good times to come.