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Annnnnnnnd…We’re Back!

About a month ago, I read an article. The main idea keeps popping back into my mind: NO ONE CARES.

  • No one cares what you had for lunch. Stop posting the pic of your latest sandwich.
  • No one cares about your life. Stop tweeting things like, “I’m so down,” and “Ugh. Really?”
  • No one cares what you have to say. Stop blogging.

The general premise of the article was on target. Most of us really don’t care what someone else recently ate. (Let’s start a trend of photographing “what I ate two days ago,” to counterbalance the onslaught of “before” pictures. Who’s with me? What…no takers? Really?! You people are no fun.) The “fishing for sympathy” messages truly do irk me. Sometimes they’re legitimate expressions of need. In general, though, some people can’t take life without drama, real or imagined. I prefer mine imagined. On TV only. Complaining about your hangnail equals an instant unfollow.

For the last 60 days, I’ve taken a bit of a hiatus from blogging—and from writing in general. “Comedy of errors” doesn’t begin to describe our summer. The computer fiasco ended right about the time I read that article and I began questioning whether to continue the blog. Is the lost sleep worth it? (I try to blog after the kids are in bed…nothing kills a creative moment like hearing, “Mama! Should the toilet water be spilling onto the floor? I tried to use the plunger, but now it’s stuck…”)

Then, we had several more leaks in our house (yes, that makes seven). The previous owner did most of his own work and used faulty connections for the pipes. It’s been a game of “find the pipe connector before it finds us.” We also do most of our own work but—not to sound haughty—we do it right. Our son’s ceiling is now completely replaced, thanks to two separate leaks. Kitchen, laundry, bathroom…all in various stages of progress. Hubby replaces pipes and hangs the sheet rock. I do the mud (plaster) and paint. And we do a darn good job. Which also means that most nights I fall into bed, exhausted, no mental energy left for blogging.

Right after—as in, 30 actual minutes after—we finished re-piping our bathroom, the boy came out of the spare bedroom where he was sleeping until said ceiling was finished. “I think there’s a fire under the house!” I ran into Spare Oom (yes, we’re Lewis fans) and listened. Not fire. Water. Please, no.

A connector on our hot water heater was shooting a light spray onto the vent ducts under the house. At 11 pm.

Hubby crawled under the house, pointed to the pipe, then touched it. The pipe FELL OFF. Hot water splashed everywhere. We shut off the hot water, and went to bed, defeated. Right after cold showers.

We called a plumber to fix the water heater and give us a quote to re-pipe under the house. About a week later, I noticed a definite drop in water temperature. The plumber was coming out to re-pipe, so we mentioned it to him. When Hubby opened the door to the crawl space, they found three inches of steaming water under the house. Another connector had burst and hot water had been pouring out for days.

That’s just a snapshot of our summer.

But back to my original thought. Should we blog? Do people care?

Blogging is different. Very few bloggers have nothing interesting to say. When browsing random blogs, I find all sorts of amazing information, enriching perspectives and honest thoughts. Five. In over a year of blogging (and reading), that’s the approximate number of blogs not worth the time I spent reading. Even if the blogger’s ideas conflicted with my own or the content struck me as inappropriate, the ability to connect with someone else’s mind and see through their eyes created an amazing experience.

For me, blogging is therapy. I hope you Read, Follow, Love, but if not, that’s okay. I’m happier when writing. Hubby looked over at me a few days ago. “So. When are you going to start blogging again?” He had that look in his eye. No, not THAT look. The other look. The one that says, “you’re getting twitchy and irritable and I want you to stop.” He’s happier when I’m writing. The kids are happier.

So, writer of the terrible, horrible, no-good, very-discouraging article, you actually proved the opposite of your point. People do listen. People do read. Words matter. And from now on, I’ll write what I please, because even if no one else reads it, I need to write it. Consider yourself unfollowed.

Also, please find attached a picture of my dinner from three days ago.

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Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200 (Part 2)

So…here’s what really went down. Congratulations to the following for making great guesses as to the nature of my confinement in this post: 

http://www.platosgroove.com/, http://pricelessjoy.co/, https://littlelearner.wordpress.com/, https://timeformythoughts.wordpress.com/, http://devdm.com/, https://kiwigrannz.wordpress.com/, http://onetahayes.com/, https://robakers.wordpress.com/

No one got it quite right, but Danny was the closest!

***

I sit, morose, staring at the wall of my laundry room. The smell of moldering wood and damp stone fills my nostrils. I feel my sinuses flare, building pressure.

We had a huge leak between the bathroom and laundry room. Our son, with batlike ears, alerted us. “Mama, I went to get in the shower, and I hear water. I haven’t turned it on, yet.”

Hubby and I locked eyes, then almost tipped our chairs backwards onto the patio as we rushed toward the screen door. A quick listen at the tub wall confirmed our concerns. ANOTHER leak.

We removed a three-shelf unit from the wall above the washer, pulled the washer out and Hubby pressed a sheet rock knife to the wall. It crumbled. soaked through.

This small room, not quite two meters square, does not lend itself to comfort. Hard floor, bare walls. No bed, not even a cot (because, laundry room). Just a pile of dirty laundry. Stenciled letters on the rough grey back of the shower, which I can now see, indicate my location. “Downstairs Bath.”  Like I’d forget. I guess the contractors wanted to make sure the tub went to the right spot.

Exposed pipes, dripping water…this place should be condemned, or at least remodeled. Okay, we’ll just repair the pipes and put up new sheet rock. The previous occupant managed to leave a small hole in the floor. An attempt to escape? Shawshank Redemption isn’t going to happen here. No one stays that long in the laundry room.

Maybe he was digging a latrine. (Actually, the hole in the floor—which should not be there—saved us; much of the water pouring from the pipe ran out the hole and under the house. We’ll have to replace a lot of insulation in the crawl space, but we won’t have to replace the flooring in much of the downstairs, which is likely what would have happened if the water had stayed on the floor and flooded through the house between the sub-floor and flooring.)

I sit in one cramped corner and stare up at the small window, then over through the steel bars of the laundry shelf we removed, praying for this ordeal to end. Nature calls, but I’m not using the bucket in the corner. Is that even a legally acceptable bathroom facility? I’m waiting for Hubby to finish exploring the damage under the house. I will hand him tools through the hole, as he replaces failed copper pipe elbows. I can wait a little longer, I think.

I pick at the crumbling masonry. Dripping water has eroded enough that a chunk falls off in my hands. I dream of simply walking away, then glance at the black and tan guard dog in the hall. Okay, slight exaggeration. He’s no guard dog, just a 25 lb. beagle-basset hound mutt, sleeping with his face buried in our laundry (now piled in the hall). He’s dragged pieces of our clothing to the top of the pile. he’s sleeping with his face buried in half of my…brassiere. He looks sort of like a 1800s prairie girl with a bonnet. Or a one-eyed alien frog.

No sleep tonight. I sigh, resigning myself to missing yet another blog post. Shaking out my stiff legs, I lean my head back against the corner and pray for rescue. Finally, SuperHubby finishes all the pipes and announces we can call it a night, freeing me from my little spot behind the washer. Do not pass Go…go straight to bed!

Now if I can just figure out how to collect that $200.

Do Not Pass Go; Do Not Collect $200

Today’s Prompt: Go to a local café, park, or public place and write a piece inspired by something you see. Get detailed: leave no nuance behind.Today’s twist: write an adverb-free post.

First person to guess where I’ve been for the last couple days (and WHY) wins.

(Yes, this is why I missed a few posts…)

***

I sit, morose, staring at the wall of my cell. The smell of moldering wood and damp stone fills my nostrils. I feel my sinuses flare, building pressure.

This small room, not quite two meters square, does not lend itself to comfort. Hard floor, bare walls. No bed, not even a cot. Just a pile of dirty rags. Stenciled letters on a rough grey background indicate my location. Like I’d forget.

Exposed pipes, dripping water…this place should be condemned, or at least remodeled. The previous occupant managed to leave a small hole in the floor. An attempt to escape? Shawshank Redemption isn’t going to happen here. No one stays that long.

Maybe he was digging a latrine.

I sit in one cramped corner and stare up at the small window, then over through the steel bars, praying for this ordeal to end. Nature calls, but I’m not using the bucket in the corner. Is that even a legally acceptable bathroom facility?

I pick at the crumbling masonry. Dripping water has eroded enough that a chunk falls off in my hands. I dream of simply walking away, then glance at the black and tan guard dog in the hall.

No sleep tonight. I sigh, resigning myself to missing yet another blog post. Shaking out my stiff legs, I lean my head back against the corner and pray for rescue.

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