The aged cheese wedge - June 11, 2006
Picture taken May 21, 2011
The newly restored cheese wedge - May 24, 2011.
Am I disappointed that the original cheese wedge had some settling issues? Of course I am. Do I regret having attempted to build it? Not at all.
It was worth it for the amount of interest it generated and the number of students and visitors who have since marveled at the cheese wedge and been intrigued to learn more about this method of construction.
The restoration was as rewarding as the original build. There have been lots of other pluses along the way too. Having seen that it has lasted as long as it did, we were able to make some important changes based on what we learned and so were able to rebuild it even better. It is gratifying too that not just the same stones but the original concept could be actually reused.
What would we have learned if we never tried to build the cheese wedge? Nothing.
What did we learn by committing our selves to doing it?
- That the project was actually possible and successful on many levels. Rather than discrediting the profession of walling, the structure inspired and in its new state still continues to inspire all who come to see it.
- That it lasted well for 5 years without any maintenance.
- That when we rebuilt it, we will were able to make something that will presumably last even longer.
- That the design worked. Though it looked like a challenging design and though it had never been done before we had every confidence it was something that was worth trying.
- That beauty, even though it sometimes ends up being a bit more transitory is still worth striving for because of its power to lift the soul
- That good can come from having attempted something as unusual as this dry stone structure, even though along the way it may require some maintenance.
- That unplanned rearrangements of stones sometimes happen to give opportunities for people to work together again (rather than just criticize each other) and share new insights, and further encourage each other's creative skills and so experientially come to grips with structural constraints that we could only try to imagine before.