Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Kitchen Project. Day 7.

Today they did electrical.

I went down this morning to get a light bulb out of the laundry room (don’t ask).  There were approximately 329 workers standing on short stepladders in my kitchen, sawing at the ceiling with power jigsaws (I made that up; I have no idea what tools they were sawing with, and also I am using hyperbole; there were less than 329 workers, perhaps 73).  A six-foot pile of pieces of putrefied pink insulation loomed in the center of the floor; they were pulling chunks of it out of the rafters.  They had arrived a full hour earlier than expected.  I am trying to look on this as a good thing.

It is very cold in here today, on this 7 degree day when all the insulation has been extracted from my kitchen ceiling.  There is so much dust in the air, my eyes sting and my throat is sore.  The dogs sit with their front feet splayed, looking up at me, their faces a mixture of perplexity and terror as the floor beneath them in this upstairs bunker goes, “Boom, boom, boom!”

Usually, as soon as the workers leave, I get out the vacuum.  But today, in this haze, I wonder if there will be a point.  Most of the dust hasn’t even settled out of the air to a surface from which it could be suctioned up.

[Aside]  I wish I could go to my sister’s house, sit in her beautiful kitchen and look at her beautiful things.  A pear.  A piece of driftwood.  A rustic wooden box.  I would like to sit with a hot mug of coffee garnished with steamed milk (because she has a Nespresso milk steamer), and not hear rough voices, bangs, crashes, drills, saws, thumps and a radio station not-of-my-choice.  Or, I would like to go to my parents’ house and eat dinner, real dinner, a hot casserole pulled from a working oven, served with salad made of vegetables that were washed in the sink and sliced on the counter, in a house where there is almost no dust, ever. But wishes aren’t fishes and fishes can’t fly.

I spoke with the contractor today.  He thinks the cabinets will be installed by next Tuesday (February 4).  Then the countertop people come and measure, and it takes a week for the countertops to be manufactured.  So a week later, on February 11, we might get countertops.  After that there are a few more things:  the backsplash, installing the appliances.  The contractor said, “Unless we run into any hitches…”  Unless we run into any hitches we might be done by February 17 or 18?

Dare I hope?

Eleven years ago, when we did our other kitchen, it took three months.  However, it was never like this.  I can’t remember clearly, but it was almost as if that guy took out one cabinet at a time and replaced it, allowing me to move my stuff as he went along.  I do remember that there was only one day that I didn’t have a kitchen sink, and that he literally cut the old counters out a strip at a time so I always had at least some countertop to work on until the old cabinets were all gone.  But then, it took three months.  The old band-aid analogy may apply here.  I hope this is the quick rip. 

I hope the fluster, flying dust, flurried activity, racket, booms and crashes will pay off here.

It was a very long day.  In fact, they are still cleaning up downstairs, and the sun is setting.  I won’t be able to get pictures of the kitchen, but mostly their work involved repositioning the old can lights and changing around the light switches.  It was a long day, and messy, loud and difficult.


They put lights in my bathroom!!!

There is still a gash in the wall where the original light was.  The carpenter will fix that on the day he does drywall in the kitchen.  But in the meantime, I have lights in my bathroom for the first time in six months!

So, I am happy.  Overwhelmed with dust, but happy.


Shannon said...

Mom! The lights look great! I'm so excited for you and your bathroom!

ruth said...

Thank you! They are galvanized tin. They are supposed to be lights that you put outside, like on your garage. But I liked how they aim the light down, and I thought they were a cool contrast to the glitzy little chrome and glass ball we dangled over the tub.

It is super nice to be able to see, lit from above rather than from below-and-to-the-left-through-a-tiffany-shade, the way is was when we had the lamp on the vanity. Funny, the thing that felt the most terrific this morning: being able to open my drawer without moving the lamp cord aside!

Shannon said...

Yes, I think they look really nice. I would never have known that the lights were meant to be outside lights if you hadn't told me.

I bet it is really nice to have appropriate cordless (in the practical sense) lighting. One wants to be able to see one's face while in the bathroom.

ruth said...

I dunno. I had to be careful no to up the wattage too dramatically all at once. I'd grown rather accustomed to how lovely and smooth my skin looked in the dark.