Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Keeping It Clean

I typically try to post this blog around the 12th of the month. However, this month, I'm delinquent. My husband and I cancelled our Fourth of July plans in order to deal with the Flood of July.

Sadly, I have no photos. I was busy hauling wet carpet up from the basement (have you ever carried wet carpet? Guess what? Wet carpet padding is even HEAVIER.) I was most of the way through cleanup before it occurred to me that, hey, this might be a fun story for the blog. However, though I'd regained my sense of humor, I was too tired to whip out the ol' Canon.

So here's what happened, for those of you who are dying for a course in home management: The pump on the A/C went out, which sent water all over the storage room of my basement. Though I'm in there often, I didn't see the water. It was being soaked up by the sponge-like pad of the carpet remnant I tossed down there years ago, when we had carpet installed in our family room and I told the carpet guys not to trash the leftover carpet and padding. Lesson of the week: Do not EVER put a carpet pad where it might absorb water from nearby appliances. By the time I found the mess (at precisely 8:30 pm on July 3, which was exactly the point where I would have a maximum wait to get the A/C fixed), the water was everywhere.

On the bright side, my basement is now immaculate. My husband and I went through years of junk (some waterlogged, some not, but we had to sort through it all) and put most of it in a pile in the garage to be hauled away. Anything that could be re-used or recycled was either put on Freecycle or taken to a recycling center. And then we both came across boxes with our photos and yearbooks. I found photos from fifth and sixth grade (I was wicked skinny!), a letter from my ninth-grade boyfriend (he was really funny), and even a diary from when I was nine. (Apparently, I had a love/hate relationship with my flute. I whined about practicing on nearly every page of the diary!) Appropriately enough, while I was cleaning, the one radio station I could tune in clearly had a Back To The Eighties weekend. How could I have forgotten Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam? Or T'Pau?

In the end, the flood (and the week that followed, which involved many visits from plumbers, a new A/C pump AND a new hot water heater...another long story) turned out to be a good thing. Expensive, but good. The basement we've had on our To Do list is now completely organized. We found all kinds of lost items and got rid of tons of clutter (old law books, anyone?) But best of all, scanning those old yearbooks, diaries, and photos has given me a world of new story ideas!


Jennifer Echols said...

Oh, Nic, I am so sorry! But I'm so glad you found inspiration in all this. I get a lot of mileage out of my 9th grade journal, in which I detail my love/mostly hate relationship with my oboe.

Wendy Toliver said...