Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Holy. Guacamole.

I spent a lot of time before purchasing this house planning for things. I budgeted and estimated and researched and et cetera. What transpired over the weekend is something I didn't plan for. It was kind of poopy.

Friday - After work last Friday, I headed over to the house because a huge, 75 gallon water heater was being delivered. The Home Depot truck showed up on time (!) and dropped the thing in my driveway. After that, I enlisted the help of some of the painters in the house, as well as Plumber Joe Merritt to drag the thing down into the basement. We succeeded, after a twenty minute struggle:

Notice the much smaller, regular sized tank behind it. It is probably lighter.

Saturday - After breakfast, Amanda and I made our way to the house to attempt finishing up the third floor. Amanda cleaned the bathroom and I painted the living room walls and attempted to fix the subflooring in the bathroom (to put down stick tiles). We then tag teamed painting the bathroom and called it a day. Pretty lazy day, but not much else could be done, as the bathroom floor needed to set for 24 hours.

While we were working away, Jeff Doors was finishing up the kitchen counter and hanging some closet doors. The third floor, while without electricity, was starting to come together.

*Jeff Doors Aside* - Jeff does not have his lisence. This is because, presumably, of his DUI conviction(s). When his whale-partner doesn't drive him to jobs, he rides his bicycle. Big deal. A lot of people ride their bicycles. But not everyone rides a bicycle that they've modified with a weed whacker engine that propels the bike at 30 miles per hour. Behold:

*Jeff Doors Aside Over*

After we were finished up the painting, we headed into Boston for some delicious Penang dinner. It was super great.

Sunday - With the subfloor in the third floor bathroom set, I drove to the house, from the lovely Ramada, to lay the vinyl tile. On the drive over, I thought to myself, "I wonder if anyone has broken in there. It was a rowdy night in the city, what with the holiday and all. I hope my appliances are still there..."

That said, it's not like this is a new thought. Every time I pull into the driveway, I half-expect everything to be missing. I didn't have any strong feeling or anything, just the usual leariness.

When I arrived, I immediately noticed this (2):

I sighed, thinking everything I paid for would be missing, and reluctantly got out of my car. I walked up to the door (freshly painted by the way) and confirmed that the broken door and lock combination was in fact removed from the side door (2):

Dismayed, I listened to make sure that the house was free of criminals (or at least loud criminals) and pushed the busted door aside. This is what I saw (2):

I thought that it was strange that the appliances were still there. Those are worth a decent amount of money, but maybe the burglar didn't have the means to steal them? I made my way into the first floor and noticed a bunch of water on the floor. It led me to the galley area of the kitchen. Can you spot what's missing? (2):

I am not a stupid person. I am no genius, but I am also not a dummy. Since I already had 'my house has been burglarized' on my mind, the realization that my window was missing baffled me. Who would steal a window?

Dumbfounded, I went up to the second floor, where Jeff has kept his tools and saw another nice puddle in the kitchen (2):

And another missing window (2):

It still hadn't dawned on me. While I was primed for a robbery, the evidence was mounting. I still wasn't putting it all together.

In my stupidity, I checked around the second floor for any items that may have disappeared. The appliances were still there, and I checked the back bedroom for Jeff's tools. They remained (2):

After that, I obviously hustled up to the third floor to check on things and saw this (2):

It was open and broken a bit, but I didn't notice the glaring sign of what actually happened. Unlike the windows in the first and second floor livings rooms, the third floor hallway should not have smoked glass. I am a retard.

I then walked into the back bedroom on the third floor and got to see this (2):

And this (2):

I looked around, yet again for things that may have been stolen and found that, once again, everything remained in the house. I was very confused. I slowly made my way down to the first floor again, a little in shock. All of our stuff was still there, yet the door was broken and there were windows missing. Crazy.

Once I reached the first floor again, I took another look into the galley kitchen and then noticed a faint odor of charred carbon in the air (2). The light bulb moment hit me and I went from complete and utter idiot, to just a regular stupid person. I finally put 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 together* and headed outside to see what the problem was. I was greeted by this:

*Joke premise stolen from Dan Riley

And this:

Awesome. My house had caught fire somehow. Mother effword.

After checking the damage out a little bit, I called my insurance company and the Fire Department. Neither were terribly helpful and I went on with my day by calling Amanda and enlisting her help to board up the damage. Here it is, nice and boarded:

I will continue with this story as it develops. I have been in touch with all kinds of folks over the weekend and this morning. Work has stopped at the house until the insurance fun is settled. Hooray...

On the bright side, the insurance company is now paying for our hotel and meals, so we're out of the crappy Ramada, and back into the less crappy, but still stove and oven-less Courtyard Marriott in downtown Providence.

So I guess this is where I announce that this blog, as you know it, has died. Not forever, but it's frozen. It will become, instead of a home rehabilitation blog, a 'what happens when your house catches fire' blog. You are up to speed on what has happened so far, and I will update this space as the process unfolds. I have little idea how the 'your house caught fire' insurance process works, but rest assured that in the following days/weeks, I'll let you know how it goes.

Oh, and at work this morning, I found this. We're famous. Our house is at 66 Candace Street, which is called out and shown in the story's video. Apparently, we were arsonisted (not a word; yet), as were other houses in the area. Apparently, the arsonist piled up a bunch of crap behind my house (crap which was already back there, but not stacked neatly to ensure a nice burn) and lit the garbage on fire. That garbage then caught the house on fire. Thanks a million arsonist.

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