You can see where I began to stain the wood beam (upper right corner of photo) and then left it mostly undone when things literally came to a screeching halt. The story follows . . .
We're making some progress in re-vitalizing my cabin. Spouse has been filling in holes the carpenter bees left for us and he's had to replace some of the wood. After replacing it, he began to re-stain it and that makes the outside of the cabin look so much better. It has begun to show some wear after 5 years, and though I love the primitive look, I also love how the newly stained wood appears. The weather hasn't been extremely cooperative though. We've had lots of rain, some very hot temperatures, and it's been very muggy here in our neck of the woods. There's still a bit of outside staining to do but I appreciate all the work my spouse has done. He even stained the inside beams yesterday! I've always hung baskets on the beams but there's a reason they remained "naked" until now.
After building the cabin, my spouse intended to apply stain to the beams when he had the time, but I was impatient and decided to stain them myself while he attended an out-of-town car show one weekend. I admit I didn't have the proper supplies to begin with and that was my first mistake - one of many. I had broken a paint brush which was about 4 inches wide but thought that would work for staining the beams. I knew my spouse had other brushes but I hadn't been able to find them so I was going to "make-do". I also had a wobbly step stool I thought would be fine to climb upon in order to reach the beams. How hard could it be? I was about to find out....
I had sense enough to open the door so I'd not be overcome by the stain fumes and was congratulating myself on being able to stain the beams without help. I stepped onto the stool and made the first few passes with the broken stain-filled paint brush. I remember thinking, "so far, so good". For some reason I cannot recall, I felt the need to step down from the stool and just as I did, the stool tipped, I slid off of it and staggered backward, tripping on something I'd left on the floor behind it. I've lost track of the mistakes I made that day, but leaving something in the floor was a big one. I fell hard, landing on my right arm as my head hit the open door with a thud, causing the door to slam shut with a deafening bang. I let out a shrill scream - also deafening, I suppose - and tried to collect my thoughts as I surveyed whether I had any broken bones or not. Once I realized nothing was broken, I sat in the floor for quite a while, nursing my wounded arm, my lumpy head, and my bruised ego. I couldn't believe my neighbors hadn't come to my aid.
Finally, one neighbor came out of his house and peered over his fence. He asked what I'd been doing and informed me that I'd scared his dog. I told him his dog couldn't possibly have been as scared as I had been. I related the story of my stupidity and the neighbor had a good laugh at my expense. I can laugh about all of that now, but I wasn't laughing then. I'd been hoping for some empathy and he offered none. Not only was I wounded and bruised, I was feeling humiliated.
When Spouse arrived home I told him of my adventure and he suggested none of that would have happened had I not been so impulsive and impatient. Truer words were never spoken. I had a huge lump on my head and a horseshoe shaped black, blue, and purple bruise on my forearm for about three weeks. I was often asked if I'd been kicked by a horse and began to wear long sleeved blouses even though we were experiencing warm weather. That seems funny now, but at the time I think I would rather have been horse kicked than to have reaped the rewards of my own stupidity.
In the end, I decided to leave that beam unstained so I'd be reminded of what NOT to do when Spouse is away. Sometimes I wonder why, after all the years I've lived, I still seem to require hard-learned lessons. At what point are easily learned lessons enough?