The saga of mending the hail-damaged wooden roof of the High Commission of Papua New Guinea has involved bees, barbecues, beer and an awful lot of bother.
It's made of around 2000 square metres of irregular bits of red cedar-wood shingle.
"We tried to get some from Papua New Guinea," project manager Cameron Marsh said.
There was none available there, so he tried Malaysia - but the coronavirus had stopped production there.
"I just rang everyone that I knew and I finally found a company in Canada which happened to be bringing a shipload to Australia."
He bought the lot for a couple of hundred thousand dollars.
But then the bees got in the way. There were 10,000 inside the roof.
A bee expert decided that they could only be moved when it was not too cold - that is, around noon. Coldness kills them.
But removed safely they were. The hive was relocated - leaving 10 kilograms of honey.
And the beer and the barbecue?
Red cedar is perfect kindling for wood-fired stoves, and there was some spare - so Mr Marsh put a notice on social media offering free shingle off-cuts (though he added "it would be nice if you dropped off a beer for the boys").
And people have - plus sausages and enough meat for a barbecue.
The company doing the roof is Abereum, from Melbourne. The team of roofers is from Queensland.
Mr Marsh specialises in organising "remote and unusual projects around the world". He's worked in PNG as well as Antigua, New Zealand and South Korea.
He speaks a smattering of one of the many local PNG languages - "a bit of pidgin," he says - and that endeared him to the authorities.
The boat-shaped building opened in 1981 is one of the treasures of Canberra. Apart from the roof, the gable ends have ornate patterns, images of clan ancestors, painted by students from the National Art School in Port Moresby.
It's one of those buildings which everyone driving past seems to slow down and glance at or stop and take a picture of, particularly on a clear day with Parliament House behind. Get the angle right and you get the Australian and PNG flags both in shot.
It is modelled on a Papuan "spirit house", but 10 minutes of hailstones the size of cricket balls on January 20 punched holes in it, so it's had to be covered over until now.
Replacement is not so easy. There are 100,000 pieces of shingle - thin, flat slabs of western red cedar - all of different sizes ranging from 75 millimetres wide to 300 millimetres.
It's like a jig-saw and each one has to be slotted in so that the outward appearance is uniform. It needs a quarter of a million nails.
Mr Marsh said that the traditional way was to use a hammer, but his roofers were using nail guns.
They strip off the damaged cedar shingles from one section and replace them, covering the area overnight to stop any rain getting in.
This isn't just another roof job. "It's an absolute dream to work on," builder Allan Green said.
"It's a very slow job. You can only get two people up there at a time. It's one of those jobs we are very proud to be involved in."
They are expecting a beer and barbecue delivery on Tuesday. The visitor gets the kindling and they get the feed. It's a deal.