Quote of the Day: "I knew this sort of thing happened to other people, but never to us!" - Mary Haines
1) Up around 7:15 after a loooooooong night's sleep. I put in a load of laundry, made coffee with a bit of Mexican chocolate in it (indulgent), had my devotional in the parlor, and actually went back to bed.
2) About 9:00 AM, my third-floor neighbor called. "Are you available?" "Sure, are you in the basement?" "Yeah, and wear shoes, it's wet down here!
3) Between the time I'd put my wash in and 9 AM, my hot water heater burst its seam, commencing to flood the basement. Time to lurch into action! Quick! Rush upstairs for towels, call the plumber and leave a voicemail, find their online emergency request form and fill it out, empty buckets as my neighbor continued to drain my hot water heater. At least I'd already had my coffee . . .
4) With the heater drained and the plumber expected in a couple hours, we could then survey the situation. A thin but substantial puddle spread throughout all three storage units, but 99% of belongings were not stored directly on the floor. My unit has always been "low tide," but this time around, the back of the center storage unit seemed to have the deepest water.
5) To my surprise, the condo association actually owns a wet vac. I can now claim to have successfully operated a wet vac, under the tutelage of my neighbor. First he removed the filter and I emptied out the barrel or chamber or whatever you call it of remaining brick dust. Then I found the sweet spots in the floor where the water was deepest. After that, it was like Mammy lacing Scarlett into a corset: "Just hol' on, and suck in!"
6) We drained that chamber thing four or five times of brown-black water, filling buckets and emptying them in the back of the house. Gold stars all around for teamwork!
7) The plumber has come and gone, and I'm choking a bit on the price (since this is happening over a holiday weekend). But I am counting my blessings, too. This was discovered before the entire contents of the heater had flooded the basement, and while someone in the building who knew what to do was here (e.g. NOT me) so that I didn't have to get through it by myself, that I'd already had my coffee when it happened, and that a surprise escrow refund a couple weeks ago is cushioning this sudden expense.
8) Speaking of "counting my blessings," I did have a notable GTS moment while cleaning up around the busted heater with my neighbor. "How many fur coats have I got, Annie?" "Six." "And how many of these service stripes have I collected?" "Seven." [with mounting hysteria] "Imagine! Six fur coats! Seven diamond bracelets! An apartment on Park Avenue!" "Honey, what're you tryin' t'do to yourself?" "What am I trying to do? Don't you know? I'M COUNTING MY BLESSINGS, ANNIE! COUNTING MY BLESSSSIIIIIIIIIINGS!"
9) By the way, the quote in the title of this post comes from Roald Dahl's My Uncle Oswald.