Memorial Weekend Catastrophe Timeline

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Around 1:00 p.m., I heard water running, as though a bathtub were being filled.  Knowing that I had not turned on the bath, nor running the dishwasher or laundry, I moved from the computer room toward the main part of our home.  To my horror, I saw the kitchen ceiling “raining”.  Immediately, I ran to the garage to turn off the water pump and main water line.

I phoned my husband to report the problem.  He told me to phone our insurance agent, Ray Richardson of Farmer’s Insurance.  I spoke with Ray’s secretary, Andrea, who asked me if we wanted to file a claim.  I told her, “yes”.

Returning to the home interior, I took a closer notice of the water pouring from the hallway ceiling; the smoke alarm was still pouring water.  I was afraid of being electrocuted, so I did not attempt to remove the light in the hallway to see if its globe was filled with water.  I put duct tape on the power switch to prevent anyone from turning on the light fixture until an electrician can check things out.

Water was sloshing beneath my feet in the interior hallway entry (from the garage).  I opened the laundry room door (adjacent to the hallway) to retrieve towels and a mop to begin cleaning up the water.  The laundry room floor was filled with water, as much as was in the kitchen.

Between mopping and soaking up the water, squeezing out saturated towels, carrying soaked towels to the patio, spin drying them in the washer and drying them in the dryer to re-use, I believe at some point, I was contacted by Service Master who would be out the next day to assess the situation.

These are the initial photographs taken the morning after, before Service Master arrived:

Soaked carpeting between kitchen and dining room.

Built-in pantry was water-logged. Notice containers on uppermost shelf, full of contaminated water. The entire pantry was soaked, including the drawers beneath the cabinet shelving.

3rd shelf in pantry, bowls full of water.

Hallway where it was raining through the ceiling. Service Master is saying there is no need to replace the entire ceiling, only up to ½ way of the light fixture.

Entry way between hallway and living room. Was still soaked after sponging with many, many towels.

Trail of water path as I dragged wet toweling onto the back patio.

Water soaked carpeting in living room, where the couch resided, at the wall between living room and kitchen.

Fans after being placed by Service Master.

Kitchen ceiling where water was POURING through those two light fixtures. Notice the ceiling bulge at the light closest to the pantry and doorway.

Next morning, 5/27/17, ceiling bulge has turned into a large sag, with cracking. Service Master was phoned; representative came out and told us to call him if it were to fall before they were going to remove the damaged drywall.

An hour later, after Service Master Representative visited, the ceiling fell down. A call was placed to the representative who said he would have a crew on the way. Some time later, he phoned to explain that the first technician he was going to send had a family emergency, another crew was on their way.

A closer look at the felled ceiling.

The mess from the felled ceiling onto the kitchen floor.

Four hours after calling Service Master and no technician showing up, my husband and I screwed plywood on the ceiling hole and cleaned up the drywall and insulation mess (3 lawn bags full) that was upon the kitchen floor.

Furniture Medic begins removing cabinetry so that Service Master can remove the wall to the left of the stove, adjacent to the pantry.

Furniture Medics removing pantry interior…


Bunnies in a Bucket

© Swoosieque

My husband does not like to mow the lawn even though he has a super duper, Hustler, professional, riding lawn mower. His back problems intensify while riding through our bumpy lawn, so, he rationalizes that it is better to keep the grass longer to keep it from burning from the intense summer heat we experience.

This past weekend, he knew that he absolutely could not procrastinate any longer as the grass was growing too thick and tall. I complained about the possibility of being bitten by a snake, as a friend of his did while walking through her yard. She is still in hospital after the snake was identified as a pygmy rattler. Her liver is deteriorating from the anti-venom treatment, or so the physicians surmise.

© Swoosieque

© Swoosieque

Back to our yard… So, as Harry was mowing the lawn, and I trimmed the huge tree branches which I had cut down a month or so ago, and had not finished down-sizing the branches due to dislocating my shoulder, I heard my husband yelling for me to come to him.

I dropped what I was doing and ran toward him. He pointed to the ground and there was a baby bunny. The lawnmower had come too close to the rabbit’s nest and this baby ran for its life! I tried to catch it, had it in hand several times, but, my hands have medical problems, I could not hold on to it. My husband retreated from the mower and caught the baby, “Now what do we do with it?” He asked.

I grabbed a bucket and he placed the bunny in it for safety while finishing the mowing.

© Swoosieque

We returned to our chores when moments later, I heard my husband yell for me again. He had caught another bunny. We placed it alongside its sibling in the bucket where they snuggled.

After the lawn was mowed, we carefully placed the babies back in their nest where Mama Rabbit could continue caring for them. It is a myth that the mama will abandon her babies if she smells the human scent.

© Swoosieque

Meanwhile, our old, mostly blind, dog has a fondness for baby bunnies as an appetizer. We needed to somehow secure the area surrounding the babies’ nest. Taking tomato cages, I placed them around the nest, being sure to keep areas open enough for Mama Bunny to slip into her nest.

The next morning, I checked the nest and the bunnies were gone. There was no sign of disturbance and I am confident that Mama Rabbit relocated her young ones to a safer, more secluded place.

It was a good feeling, a special moment in nature, to hold such precious, soft, innocent creatures in our hands.

Beauty is all around us! …except for snakes!!