Daily Prompt: Beyond the Pale

Beyond the pale
  1. 1.
    outside the bounds of acceptable behaviour.
    “the language my father used was beyond the pale”
    synonyms: unacceptableunseemlyimproperindiscreetunsuitableirregular,unreasonableintolerabledisgracefuldeplorableoutrageous,scandalousshockinginsupportableobjectionableoffensive,distasteful;

    informalnot on, not the done thing, out of order, out of line;
    datednot quite the thing;
    informalover the fence;
    “his behaviour was beyond the pale”

    In Australia the above is the meaning for beyond the  pale. The pale being the containment area for the British on foreign soil and anything/body outside of these boundaries being potentially considered  unacceptable. Perhaps in the USA the meaning is different as we are to write about new.

    As I cannot bring to mind unacceptable behaviour that is also new I am going to write (as requested) on going outside the box (? pale) and doing something which took me into new realms.

    On our move to Vanuatu we took a kit home to build having been told that there were no builders and it would be cheaper ti bring a home with us than having something built on the island. This was the first house that we had built but we were directors instructing the local lads on their tasks. My husband picked up a hammer at times but I played no physical role. I was the plan interpreter and jigsaw puzzle solver when it came to putting the frame together.

    © irene waters 2013

    © irene waters 2013

    © irene waters 2014

    © irene waters 2014

    © irene waters 2014

    © irene waters 2014

    Later, having opted for early retirement we decided to work as builder’s labourers in a large renovation we were having done on our house. This time we had a builder giving us the instructions and we were the local lads.

    © irene waters 2013

    © irene waters 2013

    © irene waters 2014

    © irene waters 2014

    Having enjoyed the experience but finding that we did not enjoy living in town  we purchased a few acres on which, with the knowledge gleaned from the builder, we would build a house, totally alone, apart from bringing in slab pourers, electrician and plumbers. These were trades that, by law, we were not permitted to do ourselves.

    The slab layers we discovered did not know how to square a slab. Their eyes glazed over as my husband talked to them of the golden ratio/pythagorean theory. But luckily we caught them before the pour and managed to rectify the problem.

    © irene waters

    © irene waters

    The next error was mine reading the plans. I couldn’t work out which frame to put to the corner of the slab and of course I chose the wrong one resulting in the frame hanging off the end of the slab on one side and slab over on the other. Luckily my husband twigged to this after the erection of only two rooms so we didn’t have to deconstruct too much.

    © irene waters 2014

    © irene waters 2014

    The frame up it was time to put up the rafters. The first roof truss we erected on the ground then positioned on top of the frame. We tied a rope to the apex; the plan being to pull the rope whilst one of us prevented the base slipping off the frame. It would be elevated to its position and the puller would then race and screw it to the frame whilst the other held it . This of course was impossible. We tried other permutations but there was no denying it we were a man short and I just wasn’t strong enough. Luckily it was veterans day at the golf club so my husband managed to enlist an elderly husband and wife to help us. It took a day but the first truss was up and we worried how we would do the others as this one was the smallest as it was a hip roof.

    We continued in this vein, success followed by difficulty or injury but eventually the house was completed, its final council approvals given and in we moved. Our sense of satisfaction and pride whenever we looked at the house was immense.

    © irene waters 2014

    © irene waters 20

    http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/01/04/daily-prompt-new-2/

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About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. I followed this by doing a Master of Arts by research graduating in 2017. Now I live to write and write to live.
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8 Responses to Daily Prompt: Beyond the Pale

  1. Doobster418 says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. Finally someone else who understands what the expression “beyond the pale” means. I tried to explain it, (http://mindfuldigressions.com/2014/01/04/beyond-the-pale/) but I think no one, other than you, gets it. And no, I live in the USA, and the meaning here is the same as you articulated. “Outside the box,” as you suggested, our “outside of your comfort zone,” would have been more appropriate titles for the context of this prompt.

    And thanks for sharing your story. Sounds like it was quite an experience.

    Like

  2. markbialczak says:

    Colorful story and beautiful house, Irene. You nailed this one.

    Like

  3. Doobster418 says:

    I have been called picky or persnickety fairly often, and, to be truthful, I’m sort of proud of it. But I think you and I stand alone as the only ones who noticed this incongruity…or at least the only ones to say anything about it! Thanks for the company.

    Like

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