Monday, November 10, 2014

November’s living situation: week 1

My friend’s rental house tenants moved out and for the month of November we are fixing it up so she can list it again.  Aside from the regular cleaning, she wanted to get estimates on a kitchen floor and new windows, so the house was going to be vacant while these things were being done.  When she asked if I’d like to stay there, for free for the month of November, I said sure.  Of course ‘free’ comes with a price, while I don’t have to pay rent, I am living most minimally, on an air mattress and two folding chairs in the living room and helping with the cleaning and repairs.  They were able to hook my iPad up to a cable hot spot, so I am able to stream Netflix or check my email from certain areas of the house, depending on how the wind blows.

I’ll be honest, cleaning isn’t really my thing, and cleaning other people’s filth is even worse.  So a little about this house.  It was built around 1972.  The windows are original.  The kitchen floor is all scuffed up.  The kitchen cabinets are falling apart and need to be touched up.  The fridge is broken, but the freezer, stove, oven and dishwasher work.  The carpet is dirty and a little skivvy in parts. And all the walls need touch-up or repainting.   There are two bathrooms and both cabinets were filthy and one tub was disgusting. 

Day 0, Friday – we stopped by after the tenants moved out to see the state of the house.  We were there about 20 minutes.  No appliances were in the kitchen, the grass was cut but the bushes were overgrown, all the batteries were taken out of the smoke detectors and garage door openers, the blinds were all broken, and maybe 9 out of 25 light bulbs worked and the place smelled and was just kinda gross overall.  I thought I can’t believe I am going to live here starting tomorrow…and that I hoped the four weeks went by quickly.  Just another part of this exciting adventure.  That night they called the tenants and told them to move the appliances back into the kitchen; they did.

Day 1, Saturday – we spent 8 hours cleaning and assessing the damage.  Her husband took care of wrapping the swamp cooler, installing a toilet seat I bought (I didn’t want to sit on what was here), smoke detectors, looking at paint, getting stuff at the store, etc.  She & I started scrubbing one bathroom and wiped the kitchen cabinets with the magic eraser (what an amazing cleaning product).   Yes, it took hours to clean the surface of those items.

They left and I was left alone in my new temporary accommodations.  I was exhausted.  I took a shower in the cleaner bathroom and went to RedBox to pick up a movie. 

Day 2, Sunday – everyone was exhausted so they didn’t come over.  I trimmed the front hedge, and went out driving a few times.  I started to have a lazy day until power was lost at about 3:30.  I went to a friend’s house for a few hours and returned ‘home’ to power at 9pm.

My neighbor’s diagonal from me must run a side business on weekends fixing cars because all day there was revving of engines and cars coming and going and it was just so loud and very ghetto like.

Day 3, Monday – three people came over for estimates, two window people and one floor guy.  As my friend was talking with each of these guys, I was peeling contact paper out of the kitchen cabinets and drawers and applying new cushiony foam stuff.  We then went to two places to look at refrigerators.  Not having a fridge is harder than I realized.  I’ve had to really think about what time I went to the store and when I would be making dinner.  What can I make that does not require refrigeration or defrosting (no microwave).  No making things in advance to reheat later or the next day.

I bought a pair of DearFoam slippers for $10 at BigLots. I am not a slipper kind of gal, but I didn’t want to waste all my socks walking around,

Day 4, Tuesday - I needed to get out of the house for a while, so I left early in the morning, even though I knew my friend was coming over to work.  I want to help her, I do...but I also need to think about ME and finding a damn job.  So I went to a new library and sat there for a few hours reading job postings and not really making too much progress applying for anything.

In the evening I scrapped contact paper off one cabinet.  Friend told me that the new fridge would be delivered on Friday, but they may not put it in the kitchen since they want to get the floors redone...I hope they plug it in somewhere because no fridge/freezer would be even harder than just having a freezer now.

Day 5, Wednesday - Back to the library for more job searching and an 'online job fair'.

Taped a bedroom for painting in the evening.

Sleeping much better on the air mattress.  It took 4 nights, but I adjusted.

Day 6, Thursday - Taped the second bedroom for painting.  Cut the paint in bedroom #1, did all the painting in bedroom #2.

Went to the library in the afternoon.  Didn't have a such a productive job search day. Went home but friend was still there, and honestly I just couldn't handle having 'company' so I turned around, drove around, ran an errand and by the time I got back, she was gone, so I made some spinach and paneer cheese dinner, finished my book, and went to bed by 8:30.  Yup, the depressed life of Denise.

Day 7, Friday - I moved out of bedroom #3 and into bedroom #1 so my friend can paint the room.  Had a few ravioli's for breakfast, then I headed to the library to do....I don't know. I only applied to a few temp jobs.  But it is good to get out of the house and use the internet.  Starting to wonder where in the world I belong.

Fridge delivery window was from 4:15 - 6:15pm, so I was home for that and then went to the grocery store for some food for the next few days....hopefully I will start to eat better since I have this 'luxury' of keeping food good a few extra days!

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