White Dog went out into the yard with Steve for a planning session. He had his clipboard and gridpaper. Steve pulled a chair over against the wall opposite the raised deck. Then he and White Dog sat down to decide the size and configuration of a ground level paved deck extension. Puff went out and stood at the top of the ramp and Taiko laid just outside the dog door, but everyone knew not to disturb the genius team at work.
They came in with a sketch that encompassed the original goal of providing a dry level area at the bottom of the dog ramp but went farther to create an area for the grill and a small seating area out of 12"x12" pavers. WD and Steve already had a count of the number of stones needed and had designed a pattern using two colors. Impressive work, indeed. The rest of the WDA crowded around to add their stamp of approval and then all eyes looked at me as if to say, "What's next?"
What was next was a trip to the yard supply store to purchase materials. Although all wanted to be part of the shopping team, Steve explained that every available inch of space in Pumpkin was going to be needed to transport the pavers and at that, that two trips would be needed. Reluctantly, the WDA stood down.
Steve was not exaggerating; we managed to fit fewer than half the stones we needed into the van. Their size but just as importantly, their weight (at over 17lbs. each), quickly put us at our limit. Steve laughingly reminded me of my love affair with huge lichen covered boulders when we first moved to New Mexico and my plan to simply go out to the desert and bring one back in the SUV for the front yard.
We allowed the White Ones a quick sniff and peek inside the van when we returned home, just so they knew Steve was not randomly denying them a car ride to shop. Everyone in the WDA was very good about leashlessly following Steve down the front steps to the vehicle and then back inside...except Taiko who took the opportunity to stroll around a bit. He was carried back inside as a result of his attack of deafness to the command, "come!"
Michael helped Steve unload the stones and stack them in the yard...just as the first drops of rain started to fall.