Sunday, September 8, 2013

the best laid plans

I had such a plan yesterday.  Some of the day went exactly according to the plan. 

Sugar and I sailed, and I found treasure.  Once again the cosmos listened and complied:

This dog is so happy.  Maybe you can see her joy?  A couple dozen tennis balls for $2.  I gave her one and gave one to Gus, but she kept staring at the bag full of balls on the table, so I gave in and dumped the whole bag on the floor for her.  You can't see her tail, but it didn't stop wagging for hours.

Then I headed to the Provo house.  I cleaned the kitchen, the bathroom, the floors, the crunchy as well as still alive spiders.  I washed and dried the curtains and realized that for some reason the tenants took the bedroom curtains with them.  Jessie will need to make me some new ones.  It will probably take her about 20 seconds.  I painted the baseboards and spackled the nail holes, at least the ones I could.  Some of the nails didn't want to be pulled out, and who knows, they may be in the perfect place for any tenant to hang up pictures.  So they are staying.

I stopped to chat with the duck tenant on my way out.  She was telling me she had seen the rain gutters over the basement bedroom windows overflowing and she was concerned they might be causing flooding in the basement, when suddenly the wind picked up and before we realized what was happening, it was swirling around us in circles, whipping up bits of dirt and plants and who knows what else.  She spotted the damper from the top of the fireplace laying in her garden where the wind dropped it. 

I haven't been able to confirm it, but I think we were in a tiny little tornado right there in the front yard of the Provo house.  And then it started to rain.  Great big splatting drops that quickly soaked us both.  I told her I'd be back today and we could chat more then and ran to my car to leave. 

During those few moments of starting the car and fastening my seat belt, the rain filled the gutters in the street and it just kept on raining.  Hard.  As I pulled away, I thought about the basement getting flooded and knew I needed to go back and find something to divert the rain away from the basement bedroom windows, so I circled the block and parked back in front of the house.  Before I made it across the tiny lawn, I was soaked through, my hair dripping wet and plastered to my head, and still no sign of it easing up.  I tried to move a large board from the 'dry' side of the house around to the flooding side, but gave up when a brick from the chimney flew past my head and slammed into the ground.  The tenants offered to drag the board around the house to shield the window, which would also help divert the water into their garden.  I was grateful again for good, environmentally conscious tenants and hurried back to my car. 

Driving home in the downpour was intense.  And a little chilly in my wet clothes and hair.  Getting soaked, finding flooding in the basement, nearly getting clocked by a brick--not one of these were in my plan.

Jr and I went back today.  We trimmed the neighbor's overgrown trees that had knocked bricks off the chimney during the storm.  He cleared out the rain gutters that were full of dirt and debris.  We agreed to wait to clean carpets and finish tidying up in a few days.  And I need to find a chimney repair guy.

In a sorry turn of events, I realized that at some time in the past week, the former tenants had returned and claimed their Bowflex.  Damn.  Another snag in my plan.  I was so ready to be sleek and gracious.


Lisa B. said...

I came back to your gardens today explicitly to see what happened to the Bowflex. WOE. And also I'm glad you didn't get hit in the head with a brick.

Jake Wilde said...

Best comment ever: "I'm glad you didn't get hit in the head with a brick." I also am glad that you didn't hit in the head with a brick.

Jessie said...

Count me as third to be glad you didn't get hit in the head with a brick. Especially since we'd have to claim it on our homeowner's insurance. :)

I'm not sure I can thank you enough for all that you're doing in that house.