About 10 days ago, we discovered a water leak in our master shower. Our house is now sort of torn apart and we have a new summer project of trying to put it back together. Don’t you wish you were us??
It’s all rather funny. Kind of. OK, not really.
Back in December Rob and I decided we had charged ahead too hard and too relentlessly last summer. We were still paying for that exhaustion at Christmas, so we boldly said to the universe that we were going to have a quiet, relaxing summer this year. Few plans and fewer houseguests. Just slow and easy and boring. That’s what Summer 2015 would be.
And the universe laughed.
And laughed and laughed. And laughed.
It’s a long story which I have desperately tried to shorten three times already. I’m just so close to it, all of the details feel vital. The punchline is a metal fitting in a showerhead in our master bath cracked. Probably a long time ago, perhaps when it was installed during a remodel 7 years ago. At least 3 years of drip-drip-spray-drip later, we had mold and rotted subfloor and moldy carpet and spongy studs (not of the SquarePants kind). “Had” being the operative word, because within a matter of days last week, we went from this
|The showerhead on the right is the culprit|
|The leaky showerhead is on the other side of this wall, on the left|
|Fun times behind the cabinetry|
|None of those holes are supposed to be there. |
Upside: the house is very airy now! Hello, crawl space!
The first few days I was in so much shock, I just laughed it all off. I had fun taking pictures and joking with the parade of contractors that kept emerging from the restoration company’s clown-car of a van. I giggled at how truly redneck we were to finally have a port-a-potty on the premises. And, being a quick learner, I offered chocolate to everyone on site. Until some of it ended up on the carpet. Oops. That was two days before learning the carpet will be replaced. Bring back the chocolate!
|My attempt to turn tragedy into art.|
|Delphino was a hoot. His sense of humor inspired me to keep laughing.|
|Because sometimes you just have to go.|
I happily shrugged my shoulders of denial at the plastic tarps and loud HEPA fans and flurry of emails from our insurance company. I power washed our driveway to drown out the sounds of mirrors breaking and shower tiles being crowbarred and new doors being created in walls to allow for better containment and access. You have never seen a 24-year-old driveway sparkle like ours does now, therapeutic it was. (What, suddenly Yoda I am? Tired so.)
|I rocked and washed to my '80s playlist all day long.|
But then it got to me.
The constant company of contractors. The stream of phone calls and texts and emails that all needed timely replies. The trudging upstairs to use our guest shower and each day forgetting something that made getting appropriately dressed before the contractors arrived a little more adventuresome. The moving of tension poles and tarps to access our closet. The inability to back out of the garage without having to ask someone to move their truck first. The wrangling of our two cats to sequester them behind closed doors upstairs. The eating of dinner at our table newly relocated to our living room. Much like the copper elbow, I finally cracked.
Tears. Fear. Sadness. Exhaustion. Insomnia. Oddly, no anger though. I’m not mad. Not even at the plumber who likely caused this with his overzealous tightening 7 years ago. Don’t get me wrong though – he is not welcome to visit again. Ever.
I have no idea if the plumber will experience any consequences from this. We learned a new word yesterday: subrogation. We also learned that the statute of limitations on this type of construction is 6 years. Honestly that is something of a relief. I wasn’t really looking forward to being tangentially involved in a lawsuit between The Plumber and our insurance company. Plus, this means we can keep the cracked elbow as our own evidence and eventually turn it into garden art. Don’t think we won’t.
|The password is: subrogation (the right for an insurer to pursue a third party that caused an insurance loss to the insured; see also statute of limitations; see also I could have gone a lifetime not knowing this)|
We have done remodeling projects before (though not on this scale). We have lived at the whim of contractors’ schedules before (though not happily). We have had to special-order shower fixtures before (yay for being locked into Polished Brass. Had we only known.). We’ve done this before. We can handle it. Right? And the insurance company, they are great. Right? All the contractors love them. So really, this summer won’t be so bad. Right?
Oh, universe, please don’t laugh at me again. I’m really not that funny. Right?
|It's a bit exaggerated but it is making me smile and feel better|