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What the new normal is like for one West Virginia family

Last week, NewsHour Weekend’s Christopher Booker shared a portrait of what the new normal looks like for his family, and we asked viewers to share with us what their new normal looks like during the outbreak. In the coming weeks, we'll highlight some of those experiences. Today, a father and son from West Virginia are using their social distancing time to build a windmill behind their house.

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  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Last week NewsHour Weekend's Christopher Booker shared a portrait of what the new normal looks for him and his family. We asked you to tell us how you're spending your time during this difficult period. Here's what one family in West Virginia told us.

  • Christopher Booker:

    The story of the Wolford's family windmill in Slanesville, West Virginia starts as many a story of family contraptions do. A friend called up, she had some scrap metal.

  • Robert Wolford:

    And as soon as I saw the scrap pile, I saw the angle iron and it was just like a click. It's like this would be perfect for a windmill.

  • Christopher Booker:

    The original plan was to build the windmill last Summer…..but, Robert – the dad had a continuing education class to take – and Robbie, the son – had a vacation in Florida to go on. So, no windmill.

  • Robert Wolford:

    it just didn't get done.

  • Christopher Booker:

    But on March 13th, when they started sheltering in place – Rob the dad – could no longer teach West-Virginia studies at the local Middle School and Robbie the son – could no longer go to ninth grade. Father and son – like most of us – now had time.

  • Robert Wolford:

    The whole structure weighs a scotch over five hundred twenty five pounds. It took perhaps the better part of a half day to get it actually raised.

  • Christopher Booker:

    The plan is to put a turbine on the top of the 16 foot high structure and use the wind to power a pump, that will push air into a nearby pond and keep the algae away. They also hope the turbine will be able to power a generator – providing a little bit of electricity for the house.

  • Christopher Booker:

    What do you think this project means for you in this time?

  • Robbie Wolford:

    Stronger bond.

  • Robhet Wolford:

    What do you mean?

  • Robbie Wolford:

    I get to spend time with you.

  • Robert Wolford:

    Oh, spend time time with me. For me It is certainly a bonding experience. It's a physical representation of something I hope in the future will be a memory for Robbie. And if it powers nothing else. But you know, the thoughts of a good relationship with his dad. And certainly I would encourage everyone at this time to, you know, find the lemons and make lemonade out of them under these circumstances.

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