Freegan insulation

I mentioned yesterday that Sunshine and Mr B were hauling foam blocks to use in future small home building projects. Today I have some pictures, and quite a story to tell.

Sunshine and Mr B took both of Sunshine’s giant trucks, Sunshine’s trailer, a trailer borrowed from my boss at the produce stand, and they went and got the free styrofoam blocks. They hired a couple of day laborers to help them with the actual loading and unloading, which did make it easier.

After the first load of giant foam blocks was hauled to a location close to the metroplex, I got a phone call requesting that I come drive one of the trucks and haul blocks because Mr B had double booked himself for the day. He was bailing out on the giant hauling adventure to go look at a tractor and implements that he was considering buying.

side note: I was pissed. I had a whole giant list of things to do yesterday, and I had barely made a dent in it when I got this phone call. Of course I went, as not going would have meant more trips for Sunshine to have to make alone. I was also horrified that Mr B was planning to drive my car to go look at this tractor. Mr B used to be a pilot, and he drives cars like they are airplanes–always trying to break the sound barrier and hoping that no small planes fly too close. As if that weren’t reason enough to fear Mr B driving my car in the DFW metroplex, I also had nightmare visions of Mr B driving my car through the countryside to look at this tractor and bringing it back covered in cowshit or goat puke or something. I love the man to death, but he has made extreme driving a THING, and it makes me nervous because I don’t like airplanes. I digress…

I said a quick prayer to the higher power of my understanding (in this case, the traffic gods and goddesses), and got ready to haul a giant load of stuffs through DFW metroplex traffic. I took off on this journey, hoping that my higher power heard me.

We pulled up to the location where these foam blocks were being stored, and started loading truck one.

loading-the-blocks

I never saw the full extent of the pile of foam blocks–it went way back in the woods and I don’t like briars so I didn’t even go there. Also, note the size of the damned trucks we use–Sunshine is 5’8″ and about 200 pounds of mostly muscle, and he is dwarfed by both the truck and the pile of blocks. The final load of blocks went one row higher than what you see in the above picture.

We got both trailers (and my truck bed) loaded with these blocks and started getting ready to go home with them. Except we couldn’t because my trailer had a flat tire caused by a giant piece of a metal file broken off in it. Miracle of miracles, we found a tire shop that was open on a Sunday and the technician was actually able to patch the tire. On the way to and from that tire shop, every single strap holding the load in place managed to come lose and flap around in the wind. This was turning into a clusterfuck of epic proportions.

We stopped and grabbed more ratcheting tie-down straps and a case of bottled water and went back to where we started. We finally got everything situated for the journey back to the middle of buttfuck nowhere.This was the view in Sunshine’s towing mirrors as I waited for the flat trailer tire to be repaired. For the record, Sunshine had the smaller load because he had the shorter trailer.

hauling-foam-blocks

The load of styrofoam blocks was taller than the giant truck, and the giant truck is well over six feet tall. I was an entire nervous wreck as I navigated the (thankfully) light (for the metroplex, anyway) traffic. My rearview mirror was filled with nothing but foam. It was tense; thank heaven one of the day laborers was willing to ride with me and help me watch traffic. Also, it seems my prayers to the traffic gods and goddesses were heard, as we made the trip home without incident.

side note: my spanish degree came in very handy. Sunshine had the day laborer that could speak english ride with him, the one that only spoke spanish rode with me. Unrelated: those guys had the patience of saints; if I had been them I would have been irritated as hell with Sunshine and Mr B and their lack of proper planning.

We finally got the blocks home, and this is how they got unloaded. Not pretty, but it works. For now. These blocks are 8 feet long, 3 feet wide, and 2 feet thick. They’re really big. They weigh about 100 pounds each, which isn’t that bad except that it is spread over such a large volume of material, so they’re awkward.

one-pile-of-foam-blocks

After the blocks got unceremoniously dumped in our field, Sunshine drove the day laborers and Mr B back to the metroplex. Somehow, he managed to leave both of his phones and take off with mine. Don’t y’all know I was lost without my phone that stores all of the contact information to all the people I wanted to text with about my day? It was the weirdest couple of hours I’ve experienced in a while.

We hope to start building soon, and these blocks of foam will make some seriously excellent insualtion against the Texas heat. I mean, really, how much colder does your icee or frozen margarita stay in a styrofoam cup versus plastic or glass? How much hotter does your coffee stay in styrofoam versus paper?

Soon, we hope to have some plans and a specific location planned out for the small home we want to build.

final note: once we got back home, I actually managed to finish a large chunk of the stuff on my to-do list. I didn’t get to any of the craft projects on the list, but the housework got done, and that’s huge. Some days, if the weather is cooperating, I can still act like superwoman in site of my COPD. I was exhausted when I finally hit the bed, and I am taking it sort of easy today, because I’m going to need to conserve my spoons to help Sunshine with that shower job later this week.

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