Friday, June 4, 2010

The Holiday Weekend: Part III

In the third, and final holiday weekend recap I'll let you know what happened on Sunday, and bring you up too speed with what went on this week. Enjoy.


We had hired some movers to get our crap packed up and over to the new property. In order to allow the movers to put our stuff on the floor at the new place, I needed to get a floor covering. I went to the awesome and inexpensive Grossman's Bargain Outlet and bought three big throw rugs, then headed to the property to clean up a bit more. After laying the rugs down and sweeping the cobwebs on the walls, I headed back to our apartment to move.

The movers showed up a little late, but got right to work. I had used this moving company before, and wrote about them. I mentioned how the owner was probably on methamphetamines. I still think he is. Luckily, this time, I was able to snap a photo of him inconspicuously. The photo doesn't really to justice to his constant manic energy, but you can see he looks a little skinny/crazy:

When everything was almost completely packed up (the kitchen stuff remained), he kept asking us if we had any more boxes. A little surprised, I asked why he didn't have any, as I asked for both moving and packing service. He said that boxes aren't a part of the price, which is a lie. They had been using our boxes the entire time (which we had from our last move) and had run out. Sweet.

They took everything except our kitchen stuff over to the house and Amanda stayed behind to buy more boxes and pack up the kitchen.

After everything was moved into the Illegal Garage Unit, which I will refer to as Dan's Guest House from now on, I paid them, tipped two of the movers (not crazy Nick, as he didn't bring any boxes), and they were on their way.

Once the movers had left, I headed back to the apartment to help Amanda. We packed up the rest of our crap, cleaned up a little bit and headed to the also awesome Building 19. Building 19 sells everything. It's a giant warehouse with a giant parking lot with a giant selection of products. From underpants to bread to golf bags, Building 19 sells it all. We went in to get a bunch of sheets to drape over our freshly moved stuff (to keep the stuff a little cleaner and to discourage would-be burglars).

Once the boxes/shelves/mattress/etc were nicely covered, we boarded the place back up, said a quick prayer to the Patron Saint of Not Getting Your Crap Stolen (St. Gratus of Aosta) and got unpacking. Here's how where we live now looks. All things considered, it looks great for a couple of days worth of work:

It's the Courtyard Marriott in downtown Providence! We live in a hotel. Awesome.

*Aside* - St. Gratus of Aosta is not the Patron Saint of Not Getting Your Crap Stolen, but is, seriously look it up, the Patron Saint Against Attacks By Animals. So is St. Vitus. There are two Saints for your animal attack problems. I am not joking. - *aside over*


We took the day off.

Thus ends the busy as all heck Holiday Weekend Recap.

Now, some loose ends to catch you up to now:

Last week, right after closing, I gave Crazy Jeff Doors a call. He was pleased to hear from me, obviously. I was less pleased to be calling him, but secretly love him and his frustrating antics. He came over on Saturday afternoon and walked him through what needed to be done (I also said hello to his girlfriend Rose, who is still enormous). We agreed that he should start working on Tuesday morning by installing an actual door on Dan's Guest House (DGH), to replace the current plywood boards.

Tuesday morning came and went, and around noon he called to tell me that he wouldn't be working there that day. Displeased, but not all that surprised, I reminded him that it's super important to have a locking door on Dan's Guest House, as all of our crap is sitting there, waiting to be burgled. He said he would do that work Wednesday. We ended the conversation and I actually believed him.

Wednesday came and I had an appointment with a replacement window company after work. I met with the salesman and couldn't help but notice, as I was removing it to gain access to DGH, that the plywood was still the only thing between an open door jamb and the world. While the window salesman was measuring things, I gave Crazy Jeff Doors a quick call. He said he was on his way, now that "it was nice and cool out". I actually believed him, as there was the sound of rushing air from what I surmised were open car windows.

Satisfied, I went back to the window business and ordered all kinds of windows. It was a little pricier than I would have liked, but it couldn't be avoided. Why could it not have been avoided? Because there are a bunch of broken windows that are irregular.

Take a look:

This broken window is double paned and smoked glass. This type of window is super weird. Since it is super weird, it will cost more than the regular double hung windows that fill up most other window holes.

These are weird too:

These busted windows are strange in their own way. They are pushed out from the bottom, kind of like hotel windows or skylights, and thus are different from the previously mentioned double hung windows. Also, there are four of them total, so that's four times the weird.

Weirdness aside, we went through the house and I decided that 17 total windows need to be replaced. Some are broken, some are old, and some don't work. There are 12 double hung windows ($219 installed), 1 weirdo smoked glass window ($270 installed) and four strange swinging ones, which I will replace with regular sliders ($345 installed). The grand total, after taxes, is $4,577. Yikes. I signed the papers and handed over a $1,500 deposit. They should be installed in a week or two.

Also? Jeff actually installed the locking door like he said he would on Wednesday evening. Incredible.

Another thing that I've been doing this week is making 17 million phone calls. Some of them to Al Medina, General Contractor, some to electricians, some to plumbers, some to the water company, the cable companies, Sears, the electric company, and some to the city.

Here are the results of those calls:

Al Medina: Our contract is drawn up and signed. He starts next week.

Electricians: One coming for a bid today, another may come Monday.

Plumbers: No responses.

The Water Company: I tried to get the water turned on at the property first thing this week. No dice. There were a few bills from the old owner that were not paid. I called up my lawyers and they confirmed that the payments were sent out from the sellers proceeds after closing. I had to wait until those checks cleared. Once cleared, I can turn the water back on. Luckily, the checks have cleared and the water folks will be at my property sometime between 1 and 3 today. They will probably turn the water on and flood something (everything). I'm psyched.

Cable Company: I canceled service at our old apartment and told them I was moving to New Hampshire so I wouldn't get charged. I hope they don't read this blog... Related: heads up Judy and Paul, a bill and/or check may be coming to your house from Cox Communications.

*semi-vulgar aside* - most cable companies have ongoing deals to entice you two buy two or more services at one time (cable/internet/phone). Cox Communications is no exception. I believe that Comcast calls their deals the "Triple Play"; boring. Cox Communications has a similar set of deals, but they call them bundles. More specifically, they call them something that would double as an absolutely awesome male porn name: Max Bundles. I am really actually very proud of this joke. It's kind of sad.- *semi-vulgar aside over*

Sears: I had to change the delivery date for a few things. It was easy. One refrigerator, three electric ranges and a coin-operated washer/dryer combo were delivered this morning. All of which I cannot plug in. Well, I guess I can plug them in, but it won't do anything.

Electric Company: I called these folks right after closing. They let me know that they cannot turn on the power to one of the three units because, according to them, the meter is missing and needs to be installed. I asked how I could get one installed and they told me to call the city, get the place inspected, call them back and they could install a meter.

The City of Providence: I called the Standards and Inspections folks to find out what I needed to do. I left a couple of messages and finally talked to the City Line Inspector in charge of my property. He said that I nee to hire an electrician to clean up anything that needs to be cleaned up, pull a permit, have the electrician do the work, call him back and have the place inspected. Once inspected (and presumably passed), he can give the electric company the OK to install the meter. Chagrined, I hung up knowing that we wouldn't have electricity for weeks, as that's how the City likes to run things.

Electric Company: When the appliances were being installed this morning, I noticed the spot on the side of the house where the electrical meters were supposed to be. Three empty holes. Awesome.

I have since learned, form the seller, that the meters are likely in the basement, all three of them. I have no yet confirmed this, but am hoping that it is the case. I am also hoping that if all three meters are in the basement, then I will not have to talk to the folks at Standards and Inspections and can just get the stupid electricity turned on.

I am hoping this despite what I was told when I called the electric company back this morning. "You may need to get them inspected before we can restore power." Crap. I sure hope I can convince the keepers' of the current to just turn the essword on and be done with it. I am hopeful, but not optimistic.

So I think that's it. You are now all caught up. I have a lot more phone calls to make and a lot of work ahead of me (us). Luckily, our current apartment is cleaned for us daily and we have a sweet mini-fridge and pool. It will be both easy (financially) and hard (aesthetically/comfort-wise/soul-crushing-depression-inducing) to leave the lovely Marriott and move into Dan's Guest House.

Updates as needed to follow.

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