The Reno

I am babysitting the construction guys right now but don’t let my charges know they are under hammers1surveillance. One is painting the upstairs bathroom walls. The other is rebuilding the tub deck with 2×4’s and I don’t want anything to disturb them since they are two months off schedule.

I am sitting downstairs at the kitchen island, my office for the last three months since the bathroom renovation began. It is my center of operation and I can hear every tool drop right above my head. 

They all arrive at 7:30 am. Not my best hour. I make myself appear alert by making the bed and squeezing into some black sporty clothes to give the impression there’s a strong possibility I’ll charge out of the house at any time and go for a run. I have no idea why I care.

This charade continues with a snappy toss of laundry into the washer, always a feeling of pseudo accomplishment, but slamming the lid down does make me feel temporarily efficient as it echoes through the house with a metallic twang.

Then it’s time to clear out the dishwasher and start over with the load that sat in the sink overnight. (I may be called a house WIFE, but I’m not a house KEEPER.)

The guy rebuilding the tub deck traipses downstairs and peeks around the corner into the kitchen and asks what I’m up to today. Ah, well, it’s very important and mysterious, involving money transfers, bills and emitting great heaving sighs while contemplating things that require an impressive fluttering of papers. Then there are letter mailings which involve some envelope licking, an application of stamps for official business and a ceremonial trip to the post office. It’s a big project. 

What is wrong with me?

I deftly turn the conversation back to him. Will you get the tub set today? For the love of god tell me YES! I don’t know how much longer I can sit in this house day after day. He pauses and looks to the ceiling. That’s a no. What he’s really wondering is what does she do all day in this kitchen and is 10:30 too early to go to lunch?

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8 Responses to The Reno

  1. Jeanne Yarbrough says:

    So glad that you’re writing again or at least posting what you’re writing. Very good stuff! And I can identify with this situation so much. That’s why I’ve been putting off re-doing my bathroom!

  2. Patrick says:

    Contractors always seem to be behind schedule. I’m guessing that the one worker asking what you were doing today was hoping you would not be supervising the job.

  3. tomadodd says:

    Speaking as a retired construction guy who is now working full days seven days a week at improving the homestead, supervision is invaluable. I failed to keep an eye on some good guys building retaining walls here, and I really regret it. I thought they knew what they were doing and I focused on my own projects, and some mistakes are now embedded in concrete that is a foot too high.

    That guy on the tub should be able to tell you when it will be done. These things are foreseeable if the guy has much experience. Keep a critical eye on waterproofing and sealing around the perimeter. Don’t be shy to question the logic and the method, you are paying for it and have to live with it. It should be clear that he knows what he is doing. Good luck!

  4. Kris says:

    Mimi, such a great read! Love your pin point descriptive narrative! xo

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