When Travis and I were to take over the house, Mama and Papa had work done on the catwalk. It had weakening floor boards and a too-low handrail from when Grandpa built it in the ’80s. They had the flooring replaced and a regulation-height handrail added, insisting that the house be completely structurally sound before we assumed responsibility for it. This past summer, we decided to do some more work. 

We decided to paint the rails and posts of the catwalk white. This was to not only protect the new and old wood, but also to make new and old match. The old wood still showed signs of the red paint Grandpa used. (It is also a step closer to hopefully getting the house striped of green and painted white.) Travis handled the painting and has it looking wonderful now. 

I had my own work to do on it, though it didn’t take nearly as much as Travis’s. I had noticed a few loose sections in the old railing. I was able to fix all but one with corner braces because most just slightly wiggled where the very bottom rail met the post. On one I had to place a section of board as a patch because a brace wouldn’t work. With not a lot of work, our rail is now solid. 

Knowing our catwalk is as safe as we can make it is reassuring, especially when I see Savannah or my 4 year old nephew on it. The experience has made me decide to inspect it each year to make sure everything is still solid. Never assume, that because work has been done fairly recently, a structure is sound. Look for yourself. 

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