Sunday, March 10, 2013

The Renovation Chronicles: Week One (Part 2)

This one is titled "we did everything wrong".

This is the post where we scream "why on earth did we possibly think this was a good idea!"  No, really.  When we thought this might be a little too big a project for one person, perhaps we should have listened. 

The token "during" shot

And now, the reality of living on the generosity of others (and their couches, trundles and sofas) for one, two weeks or more.  The reality of living like nomad with that unsettled feeling of no home base to go to.   The reality of royally pissing off the painters and the contractor before they even started because, well, apparently it IS too much for a single working parent to pack up an entire apartment solo so while everything was in boxes the boxes weren't exactly closed (we tried! The tape came undone with the heat overnight!), boxes weren't pushed to the middle of the room (we needed to walk around! plus they were heavy!), there were still some things on the walls (also super heavy!), and while the plastic mattress covers were on top of the beds, we hadn't actually put the mattresses in the covers (you try lifting a mattress by yourself! It ain't easy peeps!).  

Apparently "I really did the best I could" doesn't cut it with these guys.

Of course, the other reason they were not happy is because the furniture-less living room we promised them didn't exactly pan out.  Of course, that wasn't really our fault, since the charity we donated to didn't really pick it up the Friday before like they promised.  Which royally pissed off our employer who wa'nt too happy with us taking a day off for nothing.

Cue the lifesaving babysitter who stayed two days later to oversee the furniture pickup that finally arrived.  Cue customer service man number 327 who stayed on the phone with us for hours and tolerated our repeated calls so we could get an update on the truck's whereabouts.  And cue rejection of.....

Wait, what? Wha you say? Yes, rejection.  Apparently our couch was so bad even the charity rejected it when they saw it.  Luckily for us the painters offered to carry the sorry thing downstairs six flights of stairs to the trash for the low, low price of $200.  Which made the $50 counter-bid our super gave us suddenly seem attractive.

It wasn't all bad, though.  There was a nice moment when our (still royally pissed) contractor called us to tell us that the new TV we needed to buy that he was going to hang on the wall was too big a job on that particular wall and he recommends just using a stand like the one we had on the old TV.  Which we had already given away to our babysitter thinking we'd buy a thinner and lighter one......oh wait, maybe that wasn't good news after all.

Sigh. So there you have it.  However it's not all disaster.  Despite not knowing when we can move back in (was supposed to be one and half weeks), despite being clueless about the progress (we're terrified to look so resorting to sending spies) we apparently did one thing right, so we shall pass that lesson on to you.  If you remember ONE thing this is the lesson to learn.

Grease the super.

Even if the contractor will, do it anyway.  Chances are, you'll need him, even if you don't know why or when yet.  And we shudder to think where we'd be right now if we didn't.

Stay tuned for more renovation chronicles, where we wonder why our stuff seems to have tripled when we attempt to unpack it,  where we sit in an empty living room and dining room with nothing in either but a card table and two folding chairs, and when we encounter other "fun" surprises.  

We look forward to the post where one day, looking back, we don't actually regret this project.  A girl can dream....

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