34. Building a table – part 2

As a fairly independent woman I like to think I can do most things for myself. Some of my friends may call this stubbornness but I like to think that it’s me trying out new ideas and ‘having a go’! In the past I have built steps, BBQ’s and fireplaces but, as an independent woman of a certain age, I now know that I have my limits.

I found my new limitations when I decided to build a table within the rear garden area! I wanted somewhere for friends, family and guests to sit and enjoy a BBQ and a good old natter. I began by taking my time planning the design – I will admit that my computer was a little frazzled with the amount of work it was doing as I experimented with ‘artistic’ drawings and random shapes – but it was fun.

My next task was to look at the size, shape and height of each of the six seats that were to go around the table. This was not an easy task as not only is moving breeze blocks from one place to another quite hard, the floor area ran in two different directions. Eventually, by experimenting with the different sized blocks, the seat areas were all marked out and all the calculations were safely recorded for the height of each seat compensating for the difference in floor levels.

Then came the building of the said seats. You may say that building solid shapes would be a fairly easy task. After all, it is just a number of breeze blocks, cemented together, to form seats! How hard can that be? Well, it was hard. Moving and lifting breeze blocks and mixing buckets and buckets of cement does require strength and agility. Apparently I have very little of both. But… I did it, eventually. We now had 6 ‘earthquake proof’ seats.

During one of my ‘I can do that’ periods I decided to buy several packs of mosaic tiles that are soooo tiny you need the patience of a saint to handle them or very fine tweezers. Using these tiles I set out to make mosaics for the six seats, and as the table will inevitably be used for eating, I chose different fruits for the designs. Most of the mosaics are self explanatory but you may need to use your imagination on a couple but who cares, that’s half the fun.

It was time to install the metal framework for the table top. This is when I seriously struggled, physically and mentally. What would we do if we did not have good friends to come to our rescue? I was so lucky to have a great friend who took over the construction of the table and saved my sanity. Without his help I would not have had the table that you see today.

Once the frame was in position and the bardos had been cut and placed inside the frame I could then begin designing the top of the table. Once I had placed a few tiles in different positions and decided on my final design it was a huge relief. I could see the end in sight. Tiles stuck down, grouting complete and the capa fina (plaster) area painted and I’m loving it.

I did forget to mention the mosaics that I added to the capa fina. It was a risk on my part as it I did want an uncomplicated look for the table top but I went for it anyway. I wanted to include a few Spanish words around the table by using my minute tiles. What fun that was! I found the mosaic words easy enough to do, (not perfect by any means but that’s me), but I will confess to reaching a point of desperation to find words without to many letter S’s or G’s in them! I finally went for Espana (Spain), Risa (laughter), Sangria (we all know that one), Amigos (friends), Paz (peace) and Sol (sun). All I can say is that it’s different.

To test the table we were going to have an afternoon bbq but, as it’s summer, the temperatures here in Spain were far too high to eat outdoors without proper shade so a breakfast was a great compromise. On the menu was a full cooked breakfast (selection of cheeses for John), croissants and bucks fizz. Hopefully, all our guinea pigs, (sorry, good friends), enjoyed it as much as we did. Thank you all.

The table is ready to be enjoyed by all our guests, friends and family for many years to come. However, if for some inexplicable reason it doesn’t last the test of time, then I will be buying a table and chairs from Amazon.es. I’ve built one table which is an experience I do not wish to repeat.

On to the next projects – games area and a two person swing!

Stay safe and be happy.