I stand at the storm door waiting, ears perked for the rattle and whine. Anticipation fills the foyer as car after car passes by. My body is tense with excitement as I await the arrival of Brambo.
Brambo is the contractor/carpenter who comes to do work on my house. Three years ago he, his daughter Michelle, and their crew demolished the kitchen and main bathroom. Over the next two and a half months, the truck chugged down my street and pulled into the driveway. At first they were professionals, but by the end of the job they had become good friends.
Brambo is Brian Brandley. He acquired the name when he and a friend were working on a job one very hot summer day in the late 1980’s. Brian had tied a bandana around his head to help soak up the sweat. His friend looked at him and told him he looked like Rambo, only for him it was Brambo. And the name stuck. Brian answers to both.
Brambo and Michelle are contractors/carpenters with old time values. They take pride in their work and charge reasonably. They are dependable and work hard while on the job. When you hire the Brambo team you know the job will be done professionally and to their high standards.
But unexpectedly, I found they had wonderful energy too. They were a pleasure to have in the house, and after the job was completed, there was a definite void. So, each day became an adventure as the work progressed. I would often sit on the floor or stand by the door and watch what was going on. Brambo and Michelle always took time to talk to me.
So waiting for Brambo became a daily morning routine. After finishing breakfast I would go to the front door and watch and wait, watch and wait . . . soon my ears would catch the faint rattle and whine, and my excitement would build. When the truck pulled into the driveway I would bolt out the front door and eagerly go to greet him. A big smile would break out on his face, and he would envelope me in a big good morning hug. I would be so happy that I would jump up and down.
But once work ensued, Brambo was all business. I stayed out of the way but kept an eye on progress. At the end of the day, he would give me another hug before leaving.
Postscript: Written from the viewpoint of a dog.
Hannah loves Brian Brandley. If Michelle and Brian come in separate vehicles to work, Hannah will greet Michelle, but then she looks for Brian. If he has not yet arrived, Hannah will sit and watch the street until he pulls up. At that point she can hardly contain herself. She takes off running with her butt tucked under and then collapses at his feet. Is that carpenter worship or what? Brian and Michelle have been working here this week, installing a new front door, and Hannah has been going out in the morning to wait for Brambo.