Saturday, September 22, 2007

I just wanted the drain unclogged

You have probably noticed that we call our home the "Big Ugly House". It was built in 1896 and was always big, but not always ugly. Over the years, there have been owners with questionable taste and an inflated sense of remodelling abilities who have left it with areas that, really, the only way to describe them is ugly. Well, ugly and often of questionable structural integrity. The masking tape holding the (live) electrical wires together gives a good sense of what we are up against.

In one of the bathrooms (not the ugliest, but in the running) the sink had recently been used to change the turtle's water which caused a few too many wood chips to go down the drain. So the drain became clogged. Blithely thinking that this would be a simple task, surely no more than a half an hour at the outside, I asked J. if he could clean out the trap and unclog the drain. Silly me! One thing led to another and it wasn't very long before the drain was empty. Well, empty and no longer attached to the sink, because there was no sink to which it could be attached.
This picture doesn't quite do the bathroom justice. What it doesn't show are the ripping linoleum tiles with the nice ceramic tile underneath. Or the area by the radiator where it was difficult to lay the cheap tiles, so white paint was used instead. Or the bright yellow butcher paper thumb tacked to the ceiling. Knowing that much of the "remodelling" that was done was just a big cover-up job for real problems, none of us have been brave enough to remove the butcher paper to see what lurks underneath.
The reason the whole sink went, was that as J. was removing the pipe to clean it out, the sink started to fall apart. He discovered that the sink was not attached to the vanity, the whole thing was not attached to wall, the only way to turn off the water were valves in the basement, the list goes on....

In order to make the new sink fit, J. had to remove the "soap dish" which had been "installed". This is what lay underneath. So, on top of the sink, tile work was also required. (Yes, that is wood and rubble you are looking at.)

So, after four weekends, five trips to the hardware store, a new drill bit, and some choice words for the manufacturer of the cheapest sink that our big box home improvement store sells, we have a new sink....

The bathroom is still ugly, but a little more functional. And we can turn off the water supply without running down two flights of stairs!

3 comments:

Carissa said...

Oh how I can be right there with you, our house was built in 1898 and NEVER updated, so still knob and tube wiring that someone TRIED to put to a circuit breaker box, one bathroom that a small child would not fit in the shower that has ONLY cold water, a kitchen floor that well balls could roll on their own on and so forth and so on....so we do not have the ugly problem so much but the possibly unsafe problem and we still have a lot of the original BUT original horse hair plaser does not keep for almost 110 years and is starting to fall off the walls! So anytime you need someone to understand here I am!

Tami said...

I feel your pain! We live in a house built in 1853...which leaves a lot of time for tons of people who didn't know what they were doing to mess around with 'updating' the house! UGH! It's a constant work in progress, which is now on hold due to the adoption. Our hope (and prayer) is that we can do some serious work after we return from Ukraine. But somehow I don't think this project will ever end! :)

MamaPPod said...

What!!?! You don't call Pete when you have a crisis of this proportion? What are friends for, if not to bring over their sizable collection of tools to put to good use in your home? Pete is feeling very, very sad right now :(

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