I have been really good recently. Even though school has been out for about ten days, I have made a point of keeping to a halfway normal schedule. Wake up at 6:30. Spend an hour waking up, drinking coffee, eating breakfast, catching up on the headlines, playing stupid computer games. Around 7:30, I am dressed and heading out the door to work in the gardens. This morning was no different. I grab my sun-hat, head outside, and grab the hose.
Usually, I use the drip/run-off water coming from the exhaust of my air conditioning unit to water my garden. This enables me to save money and recycle…you know…be environmentally conscious and frugal at the same time. I am so totally patting myself on the back for these decisions. However, today, the temperature was supposed to hit 100, and that doesn’t include the heat index. So, today I was going to use the hose to water my gardens to ensure that the soil around the plants was nice and saturated with water.
Only, the hose was a bit kinked up around the device that has it coiled. Not a problem. Pull out what I can until I can’t get anymore out. Go back to the hose-box, pull out some more at the box so I don’t cause any damage to the house (my son accidentally broke the PVC pipe to which the spigot was attached). I pull out some slack, judge that I have enough. Grab the hose, go to the gardens, get ready to water.
Now, I had turned on the water which was flowing quite nicely. So, naturally, I turn around to see where the hose might be kinked up even though it shouldn’t be.
It’s not kinked up. It’s detached from the house. As in, the PVC pipe has broken yet again and water is gushing out.
Under the house.
Crap. Actually, I used a few other words, but I won’t type them here.
You see, I have a lovely case of claustrophobia which was discussed earlier in the blog. Therefore, when I opened up the crawl space and am presented with lots of darkness and more darkness and cramped in spaces that might also contain snakes and spiders (and, in my defense, I’m not actually afraid of snakes….but it’s dark and I can’t see everything). Regardless, I clutch my leaking, spilling courage and start to crawl under the house. I try to see where the pipe is.
I can hear the water gushing. I can’t see where the pipe is broken much less where the water is gushing. So, I reverse crawl out, go in the house, grab a flashlight among the five or six that don’t work, and go back under the house. After I grab the dog because if I’m going back under the house, I am not going to do this alone.
I go under the house, find the leak, and find the valve that is above the broken pipe. I turn the valve and even more water starts spraying because it’s not just broken under the valve but above the valve as well.
More words that I can’t type here were spoken.
I try to find the main water valve. I am really not trying to be helpless and feeble and like the stupid woman on the stupid commercial who looks helplessly at the television camera and says, “I have to install the ceiling fans and I have all these projects that need to be done. Who is going to do it all?” My response, every single time I see this commercial is, “You.”
But I can’t find the main water valve and I’m panicking because copious amounts of water are leaking under my house which is not an ark and I am totally exaggerating but this is money spilling out across the floor. And water…which is not good when we are talking about houses.
Even though it’s the crawl space of the house where nothing is stored and I have a cinder block foundation, not a sponge or Twinkie foundation.
So, I go back into the house and do the one thing I have been avoiding since this entire rigamarole began: get my husband to help me.
Pat had a late night last night. And he’s been dealing with insomnia. So when he’s asleep, I am super protective. Also, he was constantly fussing at our children for pulling on the hose, saying that this exact foolishness was going to happen and now it has, for the second time. Only, this time, it’s much worse than the first. And I did it.
The desire to say more bad words was very strong. Instead, I sounded panicky when I awakened him which probably didn’t help the situation. So, back outside we go. Back under the house we go. And he turns the water off at the valve (the original one) only to realize that it’s leaking above the valve (I told him this). And I can’t find the main valve which I also tell him and my wonderful husband (sincere here) finds it. Right next to the crawlspace door.
More bad words wanted to be said. Trying not to say them. I probably did anyhow.
Shut off the main valve. The house now has no water going into it. And it’s going to be the hottest day of the year up to this point. Lovely….And by that I mean not lovely.
I am now going to start skimming the details. Because they involve going to Lowe’s and buying PVC pipe and PVC corners and 90 degree angles and new garden hose spigots and a new valve and extra everything because no matter what my good intentions are they generally fail.
Oh, and I used the bathroom there because Lowe’s had flushing toilets. Very important at this moment.
Throughout all of this, Pat did remind me that he had mentioned multiple times not to pull on the hose or we would be dealing with this exact situation. And I told him how I had coaxed out the hose to which he lightly scoffed and returned to his original point.
But, in the end, he didn’t cuss or fuss or mock. Now, I can hear all of you out there in reader’s lands saying, “Why would he? It was an accident!” Yes, it was just an accident. But, this was a preventible accident. In addition, I would like to challenge you to think of a time when you were rudely pulled from your sleep and begged to fix a problem that you had kindly asked not to happen by doing simple measure to prevent the problem. Did you become enraged? Say ugly things? I know that I have done this. I confess, I have a horrible temper which means I will say horrible things when I am enraged. And this is the kind of action that would start the rage cycle.
But I never experienced this. Instead, my beloved, exhausted husband crawled under the house time and again and worked at fixing the pipes and the leaks. It’s not completely fixed yet. That will happen tomorrow. Because he had to fix things to the 95% since he had scheduled a date with our daughter. And it was important to him to honor his date with our daughter.
Yeah. I had wonderful intentions of taking care of my garden…which eventually got watered…with the run-off water from the AC unit. And these intentions went hugely awry. But I watched a man who also has a horrible temper like me maintain calm and not get ugly and just let me feel loved.
I don’t have a poem for today. I’m weary and just want to curl up in my jammies and go to sleep. I’ll write two tomorrow. Maybe. I also will be going under the house to finish working on the pipes.
I’m not as afraid anymore. Maybe, this wasn’t such a bad thing after all.