The theory which states that any given amount of work will fill all available space and time is not a theory. It is real, as proven by our latest renovation project.
Trying to keep the disruption of renovating a small basement bathroom confined to a reasonable area near the bathroom being renovated is an exercise in futility similar to cat herding.
A few weeks ago I wrote about the beginnings of the transformation of the tiny, ugly bathroom into what we expect will be a somewhat larger and more attractive one. We thought “it really shouldn’t be that disruptive since we have another bathroom available”. Sure.
Step one was the relocation of laundry room cabinets as the wall behind them would be coming down. This is where we keep things like cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, paper towels, Pepsi, etc. We are a stock-up-when-it-is-on-sale type of family. This task only took one full Saturday afternoon of our time.
The second step was the complete removal of all the fixtures, pink toilet included. This was relatively painless and quick as the professional construction cavalry arrived and took over.
Next was the destruction of the concrete block walls. All of the interior walls in our basement are block. They are very thick and removing them would be the magical key to creating a more spacious bathroom. Removing concrete block walls raises a lot of dust. This fine white dust ends up on everything despite our workers’ best efforts to stop the dust with the pretty blue plastic tarps. A new furnace filter and a portable HEPA air purifier came to the rescue, along with Endust and Swiffers.
The removal of one concrete wall necessitated removing all the items from my wife’s hair salon cabinets as those were on the opposite side of the wall. A major part of that endeavor was the removal and temporary relocation of a rather large and intimidating mirror. Walking or placing anything anywhere near this relocated mirror is to be avoided because it would surely cost a fortune to replace if it were to be broken. Not to mention the mega dose of seven years bad luck. So rope that space off with lots of yellow tape please.
As walls came down, new stuff began to make its way into our house. Things such as lumber, plumbing supplies, wallboard and new fixtures (including a shiny new toilet which is NOT PINK) all needed a place to reside while the project continued. What better place than our Client Consultation Room slash TV Room, which is conveniently located adjacent to the war zone. When that area became too small to temporarily house the new oak vanity which arrived later, more space was requisitioned in my office, which, incidentally, doubles as a temporary holding area for the former laundry room storage cabinets mentioned earlier. Hopefully I won’t need to get anything out of my file cabinets in the near future.
It was now time to start cutting wood to form the new walls and ceiling. This heralded the arrival of the sawdust. Now, when one stands anywhere near the new room to admire the progress being made, all of the sawdust on the floor somehow migrates to the bottom of your shoes, even if you try to only stand in one spot. The sawdust then inherently releases itself from the bottom of your shoes when you set foot in a “designated clean area” of your home, such as your living room or kitchen, despite one’s using the special rug for wiping your feet. Some of the sawdust is specifically designed to remain on your footwear until you arrive at your master bedroom, two full flights of stairs upward. It then detaches from your shoe to create a sort of a random brown pattern on the carpet.
Next morning the fresh wood cuttings affix themselves to your bare feet, and the sharpest, most abrasive pieces manage to find their way into the socks you wear to work.
I haven’t even touched upon how all of the sawing and pounding noise has raised the threat-stress level of our cat to “orange”.
Don’t get me wrong. I think the guys doing the work are great. I am happy to see the progress they are making and I think they are very careful to keep the disruptions to an absolute minimum. The end results are going to be worth it.
Now please excuse me while I go run the vacuum.