I was in the middle of writing reviews for a trio of movies I’ve recently viewed when I was abruptly interrupted. Jen was about to head upstairs when she heard something that sounded like dripping water. I noticed the sound also and we tracked it down. Water was dripping from the ceiling.
“Did you leave a faucet on?”, she asked me.
Scenes from the end of Home Alone suddenly flashed through my mind. I bolted out the office door and toward the stairs, anticipating a waterfall cascading down the steps.
“Stupid water system repairs!”
This all started Monday afternoon when we arrived home from work to find an orange flyer hanging from our doorknob. The local municipality would be doing some maintenance on the water system in the next few days and the water would be turned off during work hours but would be back on in the late afternoon. No problem. I got home today and was assigned the task of cooking dinner. While waiting for the chicken to thaw in the microwave, I decided to wash the dishes that were piling up in the sink. We don’t have a dishwasher. Actually, we have two, one named Jen and one named Andy. We’ve tried teaching Jackson but it didn’t take. I turned on the water only to be greeted with a trickle. It was well past what could be considered late afternoon, so I figured I may need to leave it on for a while until the pressure built back up. I didn’t really know what I was doing. I went around the house turning on all the faucets hoping this would somehow “prime the pump.” Like I said, I really didn’t know what I was doing. After a few minutes even the trickle stopped. I called the city utilities department to see what the dealio was.
[A man’s voice] “Santa Rosa utility.”
“Hi. I don’t have any water.”
“I know. A contractor was working on some stuff. It wasn’t us. He messed some stuff up and its taking longer than planned to get it back on.”
It was clear he’d been having this conversation all evening.
“Any idea how long?”
“Probably another hour. At least.”
“At least.” When speaking with repairmen or customer service people of any kind, possibly the two most ominous words in the English language.
“OK, thanks for the info.”
I finished making dinner, we ate and then I headed downstairs to do some blogging. It was about this time that Jen noticed the dripping. As I rushed out of the office door, I tried to remember if I had left any of the faucets on. Then I thought, no, even if I had I hadn’t pulled the stops so the water would’ve just went down the drain. Then I remembered the kitchen sink full of dishes. It was stopped. All this crossed my mine before I was barely out the door.
Our house is oddly built. Our office is downstairs in a laundry room/basement kind of deal, just off the garage. You can’t get between the two floors without going outside. Just out of the back kitchen door is set of concrete steps down to the office door. I expected water to be pouring from under the back door and down the stairs, but was relieved to find no such waterfall. I got into the kitchen. No water on in here. I ran across the living room to the main bathroom. Sink off, tub off. Hmmm. Well, maybe it was just a pipe that was a little leaky. I went back through the kitchen to go back downstairs when I stepped in a puddle. I hadn’t checked the second bathroom. I looked down at my now wet slippers and saw a growing sea spreading out from under the bathroom door. Crap. The sink was overflowing…with the stop unstopped! Apparently I need to purchase some Drano. You know how most bathroom sinks have that little emergency drain hole near the rim? Yeah, my sink doesn’t have that little nicety. Its funny the things you never notice until you don’t have them.
The water had run down the side of the vanity on either side and a sizable lake had been born. When trapped, water will try its best to find a way to keep moving. It found a seam between the baseboard and the wall and down into a crack and into the laundry room downstairs. We grabbed every spare towel we could and I got the wet/dry Shop Vac and we managed to clean it up without too much trouble. The damage appears to be pretty negligible, just a little cosmetic surgery needed. Just enough excitement to keep me from finishing my trifecta of reviews on Blood Diamond, Superman Returns, and Rambo: First Blood part II. Oh well, they weren’t that good anyway. The reviews I mean.