DIY · Holidays Jewish and holidays not. · Jewy goodness

Day 164: Sukkah Building

I put up our sukkah frame today.

(Don’t check your calendars; Sukkot isn’t ’til October 2. I’m trying to build the whole frame so that when we come back from the cottage that day we’ll just have to put up the canvas walls and toss some branches on top, and we’ll be ready in time for the holiday.)

It seems like every year I announce that the current year’s sukkah is so easy and next year it’ll only take two hours to assemble. And every year, we get some kind of storm that causes the sukkah to collapse. So every year I move the sukkah to a slightly different location in the hope that this time it will be sheltered enough to withstand the inevitable autumn wind. I think you can see where I’m going with this: so far it has never taken me just a couple of hours to put up the sukkah.

This year I’ve used the same metal poles as last year, but I’ve moved the frame to be adjacent to the fence and the back of the house so that we can affix the sukkah to something immovable. This required clearing out a patch of hydrangeas that I never really liked anyway, so it’s a sacrifice I was willing to make. I could have taken far less time than the four hours of work I did today if only I’d not been too lazy to go and find my hammer drill. Instead I wasted almost an hour figuring out how to drill holes in the brick wall with my cordless drill and regular old drill bits, and what kind of anchors would work best for repeated installation and removal.

In a similar vein, I knew exactly how I could do the assembly pretty easily without a ladder. Alas, I had already attached one post to the house and another to the fence, and I was too lazy to take those two posts down to assemble everything on the ground. I know that it would have taken less time to do it that way. Why couldn’t I just listen to my better judgment?

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