By Liz Adair
Two days ago I stood on the third floor of the new, still-under-construction, Skagit Valley Hospital, looked out at a bulldozer being offloaded from a lowboy trailer, and thought, “It doesn’t get much better than this.”
With a hard hat on my head I had just toured the new Emergency Department, new Surgery wing, new
As I grew older and watched the different stages of the massive concrete Glen Canyon Dam, I was aware of the contribution made by each of hundreds of people I knew personally in the success of that project, and I marveled at the concept of orchestrating all those endeavors toward a single goal as huge as that one.
I became a teacher, and with that and rearing my family, I was removed from the world of building things for a lot of years. However, ten years ago I had the opportunity to join my husband on a job site. It was a dicey job, the Owner had delayed the start of construction, and the contractor knew there would be a claim against the Owner, so documentation of everything was a necessity. They couldn’t find anyone to do the job adequately, so I was elected. I left a dream job as Director of Education at
I discovered anew the joy that comes with building something of worth, something that will last. I discovered again the wonder of the cooperative process that takes an idea and turns it into a solid, functioning reality.
I also discovered anew the ingenuity and problem-solving ability of skilled craftsmen. The company my husband worked for liked to take on edgy projects, projects where there was a high element of risk, and he was their superintendent of choice on those projects. I used to smile as I processed the time cards at the number of reversals, thinking we must have a lot of dyslexics in our midst. But talk about problem solvers! Talk about skill and craftsmanship! Talk about fearlessness! They were awesome, and I was blown away each time I donned a hard hat and watched them at work.
In my current job, I’m a step removed from the hands-on-edness of those days, but I’m close enough so that, though I don’t see and talk with the craftsmen themselves, I still feel that I’m a part of the process.
Each Monday morning as I drive to seminary, I listen to an essay on NPR called “This I Believe.” Each time, I have the urge to write one that says, “I believe that