October 15, 2007

I Am Not An Electrician...

And I am not a plumber and I am not a carpenter and I am not a painter. I am a homeowner (again) and that makes me by necessity all of these things. This weekend, I’ve had to re-wire lamps and stereos, replace and troubleshoot washing machine and dryer hookups, paint crown trim, and a whole host of other things for the new house. What’s more, I don’t think I’ve been working as hard as my wife, who has been putting stuff away as fast as I can get it to the house, and who did a lot more of the painting than me.

I am also not a mover, but I got to try my hand at that, too. We hired a couple guys to move the big stuff, and they were a big help. It took two trips with a 14’ U-haul truck, but fortunately Soffit House is only a mile away from our former house, and after five hours all the furniture and other large things had been moved. Yesterday, my buddy helped out with a couple carloads of stuff, and we were finished getting everything over before dark last night, including our food, which was good because it meant we could eat something other than fast food again.

I am also not a dogcatcher. I thought I had shut the gate to the backyard after taking out the trash last night, but apparently I didn’t do a very good job of it, and the gate was open this morning when The Wife let the dogs out for their morning constitutional. And that meant that it was time for the doggies to go boldly forth and explore, where No Dog Had Gone Before. She caught on to what was happening pretty quickly, but in the dark of the early morning, she couldn’t see the dogs and it was anyone’s guess where they had gone.

I am not a happy early riser. But there I was in my pajamas at not yet five o’clock in the morning, calling out my dogs’ names to every blind corner in my new neighborhood. The neighbors undoubtedly think their new neighbor is some sort of crazed Buddhist botanist wandering the streets shouting for “Karma” and “Sassafras.” We saw that the sun had come up, but didn’t enjoy the dawn – we were panicked, looking for our missing doggies. It got to be nearly eight o’clock, The Wife was late for work, and I finally made the call that someone would either catch them and call the number on the tags, or they would be caught by Animal Control and we’d get a big ticket, or they’d be just plain gone. On that glum note, we went to work.

Now, I am a lawyer, but I was a rather distracted one during a client meeting as I was trying to set aside the “Lost Dogs” poster I had created to try and think about my client’s problems. Immediately after a client interview today, a guy called my cell phone and said he had Karma but couldn’t get “the other dog” to come to him. I flew out of the office, and met the guy and his friends at his house – which was about a quarter-mile from Soffit House, but across a very busy street – and collected Karma. He pointed out where he’d last seen Sassy, and sure enough, there she was, and she came when I called her. The dogs were very thirsty but otherwise unhurt. The guy initially refused my offer of a reward, but when I characterized it as, “Have a pizza on me,” he took it and I was pleased to offer it.

Finally, I am not a gardener. But, even before we can replace and stain the cabinet doors, and finish the painting and the trim, I’ll need to buy a lawn mower because the lawn is starting to look a little bit shaggy. And I'll need to set up some chain-link fence to further confine the dogs to an area they can't get out of should I fail to close the side yard gate properly again.

Ah, the joys of home ownership.


Sheila Tone said...

So you're definite on the lawnmower, not a landscaping service?

Salsola was pondering that. Our lawn is a hill, so that must be taken into account. A guy who's always working on his lawn when I walk by said we'd need one with lots of horsepower and rear wheel drive (I think that's what he said, anyway). I said I would help mow, but I fear I'll only do it once.

Arnie said...

Congrats on becoming a painter/electrician/plumber/ gardener/carpenter/etc again. I did not add dogcatcher because that skill was there before. I am quite sure you will be much happier as a homeowner, more satisfied that the tasks of repair, improvement, and maintenance are for your mutual benefit.