Saturday, September 01, 2007

Week 3 - And Labor We Did

We certainly made the most of our 3 day weekend. We logged almost 30 hours of sweat equity. And what I said about the worst being over? I. Was. So. Wrong.

The demo is taking on a Sisyphusian quality. It is a never-ending, big honking mess. Everything we had planned to save has come down - we're down to the studs. The good news: Joseph, our new handytractor, (handyman/contractor) starts Sunday! He's already proven to be reliable by calling when he was going to be 5 minutes late, and he doesn't seem to be insane. This must be a good omen.


We need to get all the demo done today, so Joseph can help us start framing tomorrow. We began the day by taking down the other side of what is to be our new closet. More Plaster and Lath. This wall is in our bedroom, so it required even more tedious preparation to ensure that as little dust as possible gets into our room. We wanted to wait to take this wall down until we were able to frame, and therefore drywall, within the same weekend. The demo was little easier this time, because we had already taken down one side, so we were able to kick out the lath from the back, vs chipping off the plaster and pulling from the front. But as usual, it made an awful mess.

Physical labor is pretty solitary and gives you a lot of good thinking time, during which I crafted this Haiku:

Plaster and Lath blows

Gets in my eyes and nose, but

I'll have the last lath

Honestly, the worst part off all of this for me is wearing the required safety gear. I love the physical labor aspect. I sit at a desk all week, so it feels great to pound on things. But wearing the mandatory respirator and protective eyewear SUCKS. For one, there is no air conditioning in our work area. Once we took down all the walls, we became one with the outside. It is September in Georgia. It is HOT people. We already had the safety gear from our previous bathroom renovation, but one of the safety glasses disappeared, so we have 1 pair of safety glasses and 1 pair of safety goggles. I must have drawn the short stick, b/c I ended up with the goggles, which are the equivalent of horse blinders. Add Respirator + Humidity, and Goggles = Foggles. I discovered this while hanging off of the second-to-the-top rung of the ladder, hammering away at the wall in a cloud of lead dust, with the heavy respirator sliding around in the sweat on my face and making a rats nest out of my hair. Suddenly I couldn't see and I nearly tipped over. Wiping them off required coming down off the ladder, going outside, taking off my gloves and respirator and finding something clean to wipe off the goggles. I just wanted to get it done, so squinting through the fine mist became the lesser of 2 evils.

I'm much more uncomfortable than I look.

But at least we're done with the demo!!!

Once we finished, we had about 2 hours of clean up.

This project took the better part of the day. Joseph gave us a materials list for framing tomorrow, so we'll be starting bright and early at Home D.


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