Tuesday, October 20, 2009

And then my mind just went "snap"

Today was One Of Those Days.

It started out alright. Rain, muddy dogs, kids to school, meet a friend and head to the ReStore. And then it all went terribly, terribly wrong.

I should start by explaining that the ReStore is a Habitat for Humanity retail store front, where they sell donated items and the proceeds go directly to Habitat for Humanity. Everything from doorknobs to doors, lightbulbs to light fixtures, cabinets, paint, furniture, sinks, faucets and even toilets (but I don't recommend buying used toilets because, well, just because.) Some of the stuff is old, some brand new, some a little worse for the wear.

We were heading to the ReStore because they had gotten several dozen dishwashers donated by Whirlpool. Brand new dishwashers. I think. At least, that's what they tell me. I guess we'll find out soon enough whether they are actually fully functional brand new dishwashers, because holy mary mother of god do I need a new dishwasher.

Because my last dishwasher sprang some sort of leak. At some point. A long time ago. Only, we didn't know it.

We know now.

It started a few months ago with a surprising cold spot on the kitchen floor - which is tiled. The tile was just, well, cold. In this one spot. Right in front of the dishwasher. Hm.

A few weeks later, the tile started to kind of, well, grow stuff. At first I thought some soapy water had spilled on the floor when we had opened the door mid cycle. I cleaned it up.

It came back.


So last Friday, Sami pulled out the dishwasher at my request. I had a funny feeling. I should pay more attention to those funny feelings. Turns out the reason the floor was cold, and then damp and soapy, was because the dishwasher was leaking and the tile was absorbing and then expelling the soapy water. The dishwasher had leaked so much, and for so long, that it had destroyed the tile, plus the hardy board the tile was set on, plus the wood flooring underneath. We only peeked at the damage - that was all it took to realize that we had a very serious problem on our hands, and Sami promptly disconnected the dishwasher, taped plastic over the small investigative hole we had cut in the bottom of the cabinet next to the dishwasher, the small hole that had revealed the floor covered in mold and rot, and we just tried to pretend it wasn't there until we figured out what the hell we were going to do. It was going to be awful - that was clear. And expensive. And depressing.

As a first step, today I went to get a new dishwasher, and several new cabinets to replace the ones that had been destroyed by the soapy water along with my floor. Since this is what I would label an "unexpected expense" we needed to do this fast and cheap. Ergo, the ReStore. I climbed around in their warehouse, found the things I *needed* and then tried to find a few other things. Like cabinet doors for the rest of the cabinets to match the new cabinet doors on the new cabinets I was buying.

Here's how that went.

I went to a stack of boxes, absent of any identifying information other then a letter of the alphabet to tell me what was inside. And sometimes a wood type would be noted. But not always. So I would start with the closest stack. I would open the boxes in the stack, one at a time, and measure what was inside. IF I found a box with something that would fit one of my cabinets, I would put it to the side. Then I would continue my search, until I came to a box with something else that would fit one of my cabinets. But THAT door would be a different style or color then the first, and they would only have that particular size in ONE style or color. So I would go back to the stack where I had found the first one, to try to find it in a color or style that matched the second one. And I wouldn't find it. So I would start all over again.

After two hours I was covered in dirt, sweaty, thirsty, and extremely pissed off. I needed a drink and some sympathy. That is not something that can be found in abundance at the ReStore, where everything is practically free and they know it. IF you find what you need there, you can only be profoundly grateful.

So when I bought a dishwasher for $130 and a set of cabinets for $30, I knew I had probably maxed out my ReStore kismet for the day. I gave up on finding cabinet doors, and drove home with what I had managed to find, and was met by a friend who proceeded to rip out the rest of the damaged flooring and cabinetry.

It was bad.

Really, really bad.

So it all got ripped out, and the new cabinets got assembled and now the wood floor under where the dishwasher was is (hopefully) drying in preparation for being retiled and then, and ONLY then, we will install the new dishwasher, and the new cabinets, and replace the countertop, and NEVER SPEAK OF THIS AGAIN.

In the meantime, I went racing around trying to come up with the cash to pay my friend for doing all of this work with all of this mold and wet and nastiness. Which is how I ended up at the bank.

Which is where I found out that through some sort of horrible banking snafu, we were terribly, horribly, BADLY overdrawn. Really, truly terribly, where they tell you your balance (or lack thereof) and you stomach goes all in knots and your jaw clenches and you lower your voice because the teller is already whispering apologetically and you say "there must be some sort of mistake".

And then you rack your brain and request a printout of your activity and she tells you there is a fee for that and technically you don't have the MONEY to pay the fee and you just stand there and feel like some sort of criminal even though you know it's all a mistake.

And then you realize that even if it IS a mistake, you still have to fix it, and that is going to involve Dealing With The Bank and all you really want to do is drink heavily and maybe take a nap and wake up and it will all just be one long, horrible bad dream.

But you can't so you wander around Walmart in a daze waiting for your kid to be done with martial arts so you can go home and look online and figure out what, exactly, has gone so terribly wrong but Walmart leaves you feeling so depressed that you decide that honestly it just doesn't MATTER what went wrong and you decide to get an apple pie at McDonalds because FUCK IT. But then you realize at about the same time that you don't have any money, and that buying an apple pie is A. impossible and B. not something you should be spending your money on when you have no money at all to your name.

And that was my day.

We're eating tacos and I'm going to have a few drinks and then I am going to bed. And tomorrow I will figure out what happened to the money but for tonight I just don't give a shit, really. I got a brand new dishwasher for $130 (which I technically don't have but the dishwasher is in my house so HAHAHA) and the moldy cabinets are gone and things are gonna be alright.....eventually.

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