Wednesday, September 19, 2012
The Designer's House.
Back in July a little plastic thingy broke on our washing machine causing a flood and a chain of events.
We had the plastic thingy replaced. We also replaced the Laundry Room floor before resuming normal life. We were okay, for a day, until the washer decided to go for a walk about every time we turned it on. Whatever that appliance repairman did while replacing the little plastic thingy has cost us a fortune. Have you priced appliances lately?
Just one of these new machines cost more than I wanted to spend. Unfortunately, today's fibers are not too washboard friendly. These new machines are big, so we had to remodel the Laundry Room. There was a war about who would do the remodeling. Blowfish was opposed to hiring a contractor to do a thing he could do. I , on the other hand, do not hold his construction talents in the same esteem as does he. Perhaps some of you remember how he "fixed" the hammock or how he painted the tree instead of the chain? So one day while Blowfish was pouting over my bad attitude I hired someone to remodel the Laundry Room. In truth I think Blowfish was relieved because it was done in a day and did not require his funding. I know it probably saved his life.
The Laundry Room remodel meant we needed to get a painter in. Again, Blowfish and I had a difference of opinion on the skill level needed. About 5 years ago I had gotten an estimate to have our entire interior painted. The best bid was a bit over $20,000. The going rate is about $4 per square foot with additionals for things like period trims, paneled doors and the use of high gloss oil paint. So over time we have had the exterior painted and had the interior painting done a section at a time as budget allowed. Since we had to have the Laundry Room painted I thought we should bite the bullet and get the last of the interior repainted, which is the Foyer, the downstairs hall, the stairs, and the upstairs hall. This includes lots of trim moudings, about 20 paneled doors, ballusters, stair risers, stair stringers, and both Hall Baths. We also needed to have some corrections done at the Entry from a problem with a primer which did not hold.
We hired a pro. A good one.
Because the paint was high gloss, the trouble was not immediately apparent. On the third day the project came to a screeching halt as all the trims, and doors were "ruined". No longer the smooth, beautifully crafted hardwood detailing which has always graced our home. Now we had awful looking , sandy textured doors and trims which looked too horrible to put in a repossessed double wide. The painters on site had no clue what the problem was or how it had happened. The contractor came and said, " Wow Fishy I've never seen this but we'll find out and make things right." As it turns out, the manufacturer of the $80 per gallon top of the line paint, had a production flaw with some sort of fine grit in the cans. They stood behind their product, replacing the paints and paying the men three full days of labor costs to remove the offending paint. I cannot express how horrible the mess all over my house is. The men were careful, the process is just hard to contain with the air filled with newly airborne paint fine as cake flour.
A week ago, one of my siblings called for a chat. Right after I said, "Hello" she responded with this question,
"Fishy, are you crying?"
" No. Just compacted and miserable from breathing in paint fumes and dust."
I filled her in on the difficulties.
" Get out of there and come here! Staying in that house is not healthy!"
" I cannot leave Blowfish here to deal with things alone."
" Does he sound as bad as you?"
" No. He is unaffected. No congestion, no swollen sinuses, no inflamed throat or eyes. Sleeps like a log."
" Get out of there! Just get in the Fizz and escape!"
" I cannot leave Blowfish here to make any decisions."
" Why is that?"
" So Mermaid won't have one parent in the ground and the other in jail".
Today, some three weeks after starting a job which was going to take one, the painters are getting to the finish line. When they leave tomorrow they will not be coming back. Once they depart, my house will still be in disarray. There is that fine paint powder everywhere. There are piles of artwork, mirrors, rugs, furnishings stacked in adjacent spaces. Everything will have to be cleaned by hand before it can be placed into position. Our Laundry Room also is part Utility Room and part Storage Room. All of that stuff will need to be cleaned, organized, placed. I have a professional service coming to clean the floors in the halls, foyer, stairs, baths. The painters were neat and orderly but it rained most of the time and so there are dried footprints imbedded in the hardwood floors. I have decided while things are in disarray I might as well go ahead and have the man come to re-glaze two of our vintage pedestal sinks and one of the bath tubs.
If I find the perfect replacements, I might change out the Kitchen hardware too. In the mean time I am searching the online jobs listings as I might need to get a night job.