Thursday, August 02, 2007

I don't want to play anymore

This posting contains language that may offend some. If you are one of those people, don’t read it.

Restoring an old home is not easy. That’s not new territory for me to cover on this web log. I know that most people reading this have probably had experiences much worse than mine. Feel free to share. I’m sure sharing in your misery will make me feel better.

Interior waterfalls. Broken windows. Falling off ladders. Smacking my head on things. Getting stood up by contractors. It’s all par for the course. I know this now. I knew this when I got started.

But there’s only so much that I can just shrug off. Everyone has a breaking point.

I think I hit mine this morning at 4:00am.

The Breaking Point Setup:

Removing artificial siding from a home is no simple undertaking. You just don’t know what you’re going to get until you take it off. When mine came off there were issues. Trim had been hacked off. Crown molding had been removed. Wood was rotted in places.

To be frank, the house was full of holes. Because of this, I’ve been battling birds and squirrels constantly in my attic. But there’s only so much I could do. The approach to my restoration has been slow but steady. One section at a time.

The Meltdown:

Fast forward two years after removing the vinyl. Progress has been made. I’m generally pleased. The end really is in sight but there are still many miles to travel. I’ll admit getting a little tired. The bank account is getting lower. There are second thoughts being thought.

Then it’s 4:00am Thursday morning August 2nd. I’m sleeping soundly but suddenly startled by a fluttering sound. I think, “Is there something wrong with my ceiling fan?”. “What the hell is that sound?”. “What’s that dark object doing laps around my bedroom ceiling?”.

It’s a f-king bat. In the absence of coherent thought (remember it’s 4am) I pull the covers over my head.

What am I thinking then? I just don’t want to play anymore. I’m done. I just want all this to stop. What’s the starting price for a home at Norton Commons?

Long story short, I get up. Open the front door. I think he flew out. I’m not really sure. At the time, it really didn’t matter. I just started slamming coffee and watched news about the bridge coming down in Minnesota.

I went to work and the day sucked. But as the day wore on, settling took place. I’ll not be deterred by one flying mammal in my bedroom. In fact, I love f-king bats. They eat a ton of bugs. That's great.

Based on research I did on the internet, I’m prepared to live with bats in my attic until September, when the young ones are able fly. Only then will I take steps to remove them.

I broke, temporarily, but now I’m back. And tonight, if a bat buzzes my head, I’ll smile knowingly that his residence is temporary and I’ll have a great conversation starter the next time I get together with friends.

6 comments:

Ceece said...

oh Ted, I'm just glad that you had a breaking point too. Makes me feel normal. kind of.

Well here's a nice story for you. THe leak in the office, that we thought was new, is apparently quite old. When Adam went to tear down the wall paper there was nothing behind it. Except aluminum siding. No studs, no walls, no nothing. awesome.

TedF said...

Don't you just love surprises? Life would be so boring with out them.

dan chandler said...

oh, restoring an old house on HGTV looks so fun......

i too am glad to see that there's someone else out there with a breaking point. we just have to step back and remind ourselves how bored and unsatisfied we'd be in norton commons.

TedF said...

I just met Chris and Debbie, who live in a new house in the Knobs. They were looking at the house next door to me - 844 CB. They said they love the street (cedar bough).

It was an uplifting conversation. They want to restore it. Understand the HPC role. Know the neighborhood isn't perfect. Yet they said it "looks like people really care on this street".

So who paid them to come down here and say all that and get me all cheered up???? ;)

New Alb Annie said...

Bats in the belfry, eh? It probably wouldn't have been as unsettling if it hadn't happened at 4 am.

We had a possum stuck in our garage a couple of years ago. He didn't want to leave. Steve and I had to corner him and then push him with poles to try to get him out. He kept running back into a corner. We looked like a couple of natives in the African bush, whooping, hollering, thrusting sticks at it, like we were trying to frighten it out of our village.

bluegill said...

I used to live in the dank basement of an old house in Bloomington, with my bedroom right next to the former boiler room. That was the bat's bedroom and the wall separating the two didn't quite go all the way to the top.

There's nothing like the gentle breeze of leathery wings on your face to wake you up in the middle of the night. I gradually began to appreciate him, though, since the mice were more afraid of him than I was.