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The Good Life

A Cigar-Lover Gets Creative During the Time of Covid

Jun 5, 2020 | By Thomas Pappalardo
A Cigar-Lover Gets Creative During the Time of Covid
Photo/Richard Durham

With most of the U.S. population staying at home due to Coronavirus, free time abounds. For many, each week cooped up in their homes under quarantine is no different than the next. But some people have used the downtime to learn new skills or to improve on their already existing hobbies rather than just watching the days go by.

Such is the case for Richard Durham, a retired engineer from Apopka, Florida. Prior to the pandemic, Durham would go traveling with his wife, Penny, or when at home he would work around the house on various projects.

“Over the last few months, with more time at home due to the pandemic, I completed almost every home improvement project I had been putting off for years,” he told Cigar Aficionado.

As his to-do list got shorter and shorter, his wife asked him to do something with the pile of cigar boxes he had stashed in the garage.

What came next was an interesting and unique project: A quaint chest of 32 drawers for his garage workbench. To make this, Durham assembled some of his surplus empty Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial Toro boxes (his go-to cigar) that he framed with pine boards which he stained to match the veneers on the boxes. He then added pull knobs to every box and labeled each drawer accordingly. The entire project took two to three days.

“Now I have a place to store those valued thing-a-ma-jigs—items that everyone keeps but can’t find when you need one.”

Having completed this project, Durham was itching to find another cigar box idea and found inspiration once again when his wife was shopping from home for a new lamp. Due to the red accents in the décor of their den, he decided this time to use seven Flor de Las Antillas boxes, which have reddish tones in the detailed trim work. He purchased a lamp kit from a local hardware store and then built it in less than a day.

Crafty and industrious, Durham is planning to work on more cigar box projects in the near future.

Have you done anything creative with your cigar boxes during quarantine? Share your projects in our comments section below.

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