This is not the first time I have royally f*cked up..nor will it likely be the last. But..it is a big one!!
Over the 30 some years my sweetness and I have been together..we have ventured into renovations, far too many times! I hate it..worse, I HATE, living in it. Gyproc dust in your nose, in your hair, in the freaking butter...not a single inch of room that does not contain either a tool, or a bit of building material, or paint, or"mud". The smell of polyurethane hanging heavy like the morning dew, burning the crap out of your eyes.
Generally by the time a project is done, it may look lovely, but the cost of arguments, and labour, usually has me viewing the finished job with hate. The price monetarily is always far less..free labour is cheap...but holy cow, physically it is expensive.
I believe this latest project has increased my grey hair percentage by about 40...I see myself as I brush my teeth, and gasp in shock. I have enormous bags under my eyes, I wouldn't call them bags anymore, they are more like steamer trunks! I try not to look, because I now resemble a bag lady..someone who lives on the street. I no longer own a piece of clothing that any thrift shop would accept. I live on caffine, nicotine, and potato chips, with the odd chocolate bar sucked back when I need an energy boost. I work in my pajamas until I have to enter a room with windows facing out to the road, and then must put some "real" clothes on, in case someone glances into my curtainless windows.
My "living" area is void of anything now. Almost every ceiling and every wall has been painted. I have taught myself to do the jobs my honey usually does, because he is not here to help. I am doing this project basically solo. Daunting is the word best used to describe this period.
Over time, I admired independent women, one in particular, who seemed capable of doing absolutely anything...well, in truth, she can. I, on the other hand, know my limitations, and they are many. I am not adverse to hard work, done that for most of my life, so although age is creeping up quickly, and I no longer have the ability to wait for a second wind..because the first wind blows out pretty fast, I know I can stand the test. I just understand, I am not the smartest, or handiest human, so big jobs scare me.
I am in the midst of one of these big jobs. I managed to paint and mud, and sand, almost a whole house, but..this job..what a bloody headache.
We have hardwood in our home. Oh..I was so thrilled to get this stuff. Hate, hate, hate carpet. When we bought the house the livingroom had carpet. It also had a wood stove in it. Who the F*ck does this? Sure the wood stove was set on a tiled area, but..anyone who has experience with these things, knows, sometimes when you go to fill them up, things pop (embers) and they can fly a great distance..in fact they can fly right over the tile, and onto the carpet. Add to this, the mess of firewood being tracked into the house, then throw in some dogs, some kids, some grand kids, and you have a stinking mess with black spots. So...hardwood it was. Beautiful stuff! I am partial to light woods, so I got my way..lovely golden birch shiny flooring replaced the nasty carpet.
This stuff is engineered.whatever the heck that means. Well, I sort of know what it means..it means it is birch, but not all of it. It also has this amazing glossy clear finish, and...the big thing..it is capable of being refinished!
Well folks, stating it is capable is one thing, doing is a whole other matter. My beloved showed up to spend 2 days at home, so we could get this job done. We had the professional sander,we dished out big bucks for the clear coating, and applicators, and sand paper, pads, etc. We worked until well past midnight, sanding. He actually had me stand on the sander to add pressure, because nothing was getting through that amazing finish.Well..almost nothing..somehow my dogs managed to get through it over time..what the heck was going on?
2 days he was here, then he had to leave. The floor was not done, but..it had been sanded in spots, so we were now past the point of no return, and there I was..on my own. The sander guy sent us off with this paper that could take the skin off an elephant..but..surprise..whoever engineered this coating could use it to armour elephants!
So after some tears, and the urge to crawl into a corner and curl up into a ball, I called the folks that sold us this flooring. She laughed when I explained what was happening, and then told me not to worry. All I had to do was sand the top, to create a surface, and then happily set about applying the clear coat.
Sounds easy, eh? NOT!!! So far I have managed to put two coats on 2 floors, the areas that did get sanded, well they are sucking that coating in..the surface sanded ones (which are the majority) are just getting nice and glossy. So..again..this project is too far gone, it has to be completed. Now I have to spend my day, flitting about, coating the sanded areas a couple of times so they take on the gloss of the rest of the floor.
I am grateful to know that amazing woman who can do anything on her own, I have to bring her to mind in the midst of all of this, because right now, I need to be just like her! I don't want to be like her, I want to pick up the phone and call someone who knows what they are doing, and just grab a glass of wine, and relax outside, watching the river flow..but I can't.
This, of course, will pass. It will eventually be finished, and like many projects in the past, it will look lovely..but...right now, I wish it was carpet, and all I would have to do is rip it out and replace it. This time, I realize, somehow, I will manage, but, I also realize, next flooring I get, is definitely NOT going to be hardwood!