Today I noticed that the church had a large pile of gravel delivered to the far corner of its gravel parking lot, presumably so they can use it to resurface the lot from time to time. I decided to take matters into my own hands, literally, and got the wheelbarrow, shovel, and rake, and sallied forth to tackle some of those potholes.
The largest of the holes was one that I'd taken to calling "the swimming pool" due to its size. Being an engineer, I like to measure things. I counted fifty shovels of gravel as the number needed to fill the wheelbarrow without making it too heavy to handle. It took five wheelbarrow-loads of gravel to fill the "swimming pool." I carted four more loads of gravel to fill smaller potholes before my wrist informed me that, brace or no, I was over-doing it. Ow.
I do hope that my freelance road-work doesn't bring the wrath of the church upon me for "stealing" their gravel. Lisa's cousin is still active in the church's governance, so the next time I see him, I'll tell him that I was doing the neighborly thing by patching the road. Besides, I've been saying that if someone would buy the materials, I'd provide the labor, and it appears that "my prayers were answered."
Work like this reminds me of how fortunate I am to have a computer job that pays well, rather than having to earn a living by hard manual labor. I think I only spent about 90 minutes shoveling and moving gravel, but I'm feeling all in nonetheless.
Update, 17:00: Lisa and I ran into her cousin at the hardware store today and I explained what I'd done. Not only did he endorse my actions, but he went and got his barrow and filled in the rest of the potholes while Lisa and I worked on putting up some metal sheeting on the old house to replace the temporary plastic covering the hole in the wall. Lisa rushed to secure the sheets as the rain began to fall again. Just as things started getting seriously wet, we managed to get back under cover.