A Cowboy’s Faith: Repair brings newness back

buchmanhead“There’s a hole in the roof, and it’s leaking.”

A terrible announcement, whoever makes it, but actually a too common one.

Reminder was frequent during early fall rains, and again when strong winds pressured nails out, and tin flopped agitatedly on the northeast corner of the indoor arena, as we rode around three dozen times.

Nature has its obvious toll on structure covers whatever they are: shingles, tin, tar paper. And, that’s when damage occurs to contents.

Inside walls of the garage and several places in that north barn reveal obvious destruction where there’s a “hole in the roof.”

These days, we call in the professionals to “fix the roof.” Yet, on occasion, when there was no alternative, we’ve had to take action with hammer, nails, and generally a can of icky, sticky, dirty black tar.

Smell of hot tar instantly comes to mind when we think of the word, as commercial tarring firms were called many times to repair our family’s grocery store roof as we were growing up.

Stinky smoke rose into the sky as propane flames kept tar liquid, and workers in tar-blackened overalls carried five-gallon buckets to a pulley system, which lifted the tar 60 feet in the air, where man-handled mops spread the roof repair.

Tar paper roofing was common in earlier years, and we reflect often assisting with replacement on the barn. Mom always insured everything, so after tar paper was blown off, payments were collected. Then, Dad and I carried new rolls of tar paper, along with half pint cans of cold tar and short nails to redo the roofing, which blew off again in a couple years.

When the folks built a new garage on the rental property next door, we helped shingle the roof. Always clumsy, we weren’t paying attention and fell off, landing on (Mr.) Hermstein’s barbed wire fence, cutting our leg, with scar proof today.

Several times, we’ve been called to help tin roofs, sometimes new, but generally with used holey stuff that still leaked, even after we reroofed the barn.

Reminds us of Ecclesiastes 10:18: “Through indolence, the rafters decay, and the roof sinks in, and through idleness of the hands, the barn leaks.” So, Amos 9:11: “I’ll repair the holes in the roof, fix it up like new.”


Frank_BuchmanFrank J. Buchman is a lifelong rancher from Alta Vista, a lifetime newspaper writer, syndicated national ag writer and a radio marketing consultant. He writes a weekly column to share A Cowboy’s Faith.


2 Responses to A Cowboy’s Faith: Repair brings newness back

  1. Unome says:

    Can’t start my Sunday until I read “Cowboy” … keep up the good work and …
    be sure to wear a “hat” outside!

  2. Rory Charisse says:

    I’m still learning from you, while I’m improving myself. I certainly enjoy reading all that is written on your blog. Keep the posts coming. I liked it!

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