Friday, July 31, 2009

OK, maybe too much slowing...

But only because I don't have a bathroom yet. It's coming.

Short post, because for once I'm tired and not because of nervous exhaustion or anxiety-induced freezing. It was caused by actual sustained physical activity. Now there's a concept! A lot of what I want to do around here has been put sort of on hold while the bathroom got sorted out, and because of the stunning amount of rain we've had. I'd be willing to bet we haven't had three days in a row without some sort of precipitation since the beginning of the month. I don't think painting is a great idea in a steady downpour (even though I'm painting inside, of course). I have visions of the fresh paint simply peeling off the old paint, just like pudding skin. (Which I love, by the way.) Perhaps if it were a little warmer whilst being rainy, I might be willing to take the chance. But upper 70's at the beginning of August doesn't count. If I were a farmer, I'd be having a heart attack pretty much every day.

So back to the sustained poured steadily all day, until about 4:00. Then the sun made an appearance, and combined with the humidity...YUCK. It wasn't all that hot, but SO muggy. As the sun went down, it wasn't so bad, and I think everyone who had some yard work (other than mowing, that would be an exercise in foolishness) leapt into action. It's supposed to be sunny tomorrow, but rain again Sunday, so we must make hay while the sun shines. I took the opportunity to pull the weeds I had dosed with Spectracide the other day, and boy did it kill stuff deader than a beaver hat. Said stuff was growing up through the gravel that is my back walkway into the mudroom, and where I park. Before long I had the rake out, and realized that whoever dumped this gravel...well, that's what they did. Dump it, and barely spread it around. Wherever it fell, that was good enough. (I can only hazard a guess whose work this was. *ahem*) So I raked the gravel off of what turned out to be a concrete slab under the steps into the mudroom, and away from the base of the WOODEN steps. Then I had to start working on the parking spot, again, just planning to rake out the dead stuff.

That's when I realized that the basement window wells should perhaps not be full of gravel. And that the gravel also should perhaps not be right up against the house to the point that it's under the siding. And that the gravel would really do well to be under my car before I chew up that muddy, muddy spot. So I hauled out the work gloves and BY HAND scooped the gravel out of the wells. Between the two of those, and raking away from the foundation a fair bit, I had enough to cover about half of the parking area. (It's roughly two cars long, and one car wide. I live on an alley, remember?) There was garbage and broken glass in them as well, always a treat. Now, if it turns out there should be more than the shallow layer of gravel I left in there, I will happily march over to the Home Despot and buy me some bags o' marble chips or something. But it would take a lot of arguing to convince me to fill them to the brim again. I've left a couple inches of the galvanized metal whatever-it-is-around exposed, to encourage the rainwater to go around instead of over (and presumably, IN). The windows have plywood in them now. I wonder if plexiglass would be a good replacement? (That would probably lead to replacing the window casings down there too...maybe I'll leave that alone for a little while...)

So I raked for two hours, met two more neighbors, and realized that it's VERY gratifying to have people tell you how welcome you are to the neighborhood, and how nice it is to have a nice person living in the house again. It had been abandoned for a couple of years prior, and while I categorize my house as medium-large but modest, the neighborhood is quite...well, not-modest, for the most part. (Especially the street above me.) Let's just say that "abandoned" is not generally the architectural style preferred around here. It's much more welcoming than any neighborhood I've lived in before, and I think I'm going to like it. much for a short post, eh?

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