DIY · Holidays Jewish and holidays not. · Jewy goodness · Renovation · whine and cheese

Nomadic Hut Awareness Week

This is a crazy time of year around here. As the sun sets tonight, we will celebrate the last two in a month-long string of holidays. Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur have come and gone, and now so has Sukkot – or as Mr. December calls it, Nomadic Hut Awareness Week.

This year’s sukkah was a bit of a fail. It started off brilliantly, though. See, we’ve had this tent in our backyard since the beginning of our renovation. First it housed all the cabinets and appliances we had salvaged for reuse, and then it became a shop of sorts for my giant saws (one of which was stolen out of the tent, but that’s another story for another time.)

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As I began to disassemble the tent, I realized that many parts of the frame would be perfect for a sukkah – relatively light and small, they’d pack up compactly; using only long bolts and nuts, they could be assembled easily with no power tools necessary. This was starting to sound like a dream sukkah. I disassembled the tent and assembled a sukkah frame.

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I used black plastic (ABS) pipes for the joints. All the metal parts you see are from the original structure. Anyhow, with the amount of corner bracing I added, and as I attached the frame to the back porch, I figured it was pretty darn stable. The walls went up, greenery went on top, and we decorated. It was even pretty from the outside:

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We dined in the sukkah three times. And then one morning we woke up to this:

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(Actually, it was worse than that. But I didn’t take a picture of it when it was almost completely upside down.)

I tried to right it. I tried to straighten the joints and brace the corners – to no avail. The photo above was taken after my efforts to rescue the sukkah. We haven’t eaten in it again because I’m afraid it’ll collapse. And now the holiday is over, and I have to figure out what went wrong and whether the frame is salvageable.

Did I mention how I woke up on the first day of Sukkot with a particularly nasty cold and couldn’t take the kids on any playdates or outings while they were off school for the holiday? Yeah. Total bummer.

All of this to say that I’m kind of glad Nomadic Hut Awareness Week is over. We’ll try it again next year.

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