The picture below is taken from what will be the outside entrance to the basement.
Today, they will be building the walls. The iron rods standing in the concrete are called 'rebar'. There will be four rows of rebar going horizontally along the vertical rebar. This will provide reinforcement for the concrete walls, just as your bones provide support for your body. The 'planks' that you see leaning up against the dirt walls of what will be the cellar are the forms. They will be stood up to provide a mold for the walls. They will sit on top of the footers and the concrete will be poured between them and around the rebar. The floor will be poured, which will fill in that concrete rectangle we have now.
In other news, a group of teachers addressed the behavior problems at the school that William attends. I am very interested in this. We meet William and walk home with him pretty much every day and I see plenty of behavior that does shock me. That's not just a word. I mean, it truly does shock me.
After reading about the problems, I talked to William this morning. I told him what the teachers had said. He said in a musing way, "I didn't know they talked to teachers like that too."
(too???) This warranted further questioning.
William said, "Walter came at my friend Levi with a metal water bottle acting like he was going to smash him in the head with it yesterday."
"Well, you do understand that when a kid behaves like this, nine chances out of ten, he is not going to hit you. He's getting off on making you afraid. That's what makes him feel powerful."
(please, God, let this be true.)
William said, "I know. We stand our ground. I told Levi he wouldn't do it."
"And then what did Walter do?"
"Oh, he got mad. Then he told me, 'You are a waste of space, you shouldn't even be on this planet. No wonder your father ran away.'"
(*gasp* long pause as I figure out what to say next).
"William, you do understand that your father did not run away from you. He was a dangerous man. It was unsafe for you to be around him, and the courts agreed."
"I know," he said.
"You are a good kid. You know this, right?"
"I know," he said.
"Walter is not a bully. He is abusive. For a kid to be that cruel and hatefilled is not normal. Something terrible is happening in his home. If he's talking like that, he's not talking like that just to you and Levi. I'm going to guess he gets in trouble a lot."
"He does," William answered.
"And the thing is, that behavior is not going to stop when he gets out of school. In the adult world, abusive behavior gets you in trouble. Abusive people get arrested. They get criminial records. They go to jail. Every single abusive person learns that behavior as a kid."
William listened. He listened as I said, "If this shit ever lays one hand on you, you need to stop right there. You need to go to the office. You need to call your grandmother. He cannot lay a hand on you, and I'm going to guess he knows that, but if he doesn't, he needs to learn it."
I dropped William off at school. I worry about his footing too. Is the 'rebar' we are building that boy around strong enough to hold him upright in the middle of bullshit like this?