Homestead Day 53 Monday 11/12/2017
Daybreak at this time of the year is about 9:00. This creates the illusion of getting up very early when you arise at 8:00. I have for years gone to bed at between 11 and 12 every night and been back up somewhere between 7 and 8:00. I worked for myself and I had an ailing wife so I was never in a hurry to get up, I just did. Having moved four time zones west certainly messed up my biological clock. Just in the past few days have I begun to get back into my normal pattern of sleep. It seems in part it may be due to having an actual bed in an actual house. A return to normalcy that has let me sleep more soundly during the night instead of awakening several times during the night. The travel trailer was almost like sleeping in tent. The bed was comfortable but every sound penetrated the walls and my brain. It wasn’t that I was afraid it was simply a disturbance of normal sleep. This morning I had my usual caffeine injection. Read some news, paid some bills and sent a couple of emails. My dislike of the coming task, plumbing, made me linger a little longer in front of the fire.
“Once again unto the breech, dear friends” I gathered my wits about me and set about solving the minor, but continually aggravating plumbing problems. Once again I found that there were parts needed to complete the task. 10 miles to the hardware store and back only to find that one of the two parts I bought was wrong. It was on the same peg as the correct one and I just grabbed the first two off the peg. I should have been paying closer attention, so it is ultimately my fault that I got home with the wrong part. Another 10 miles to the hardware store and this time I returned with the correct part. At long last the plumbing system was complete or so I thought. The first test, I had Summer turn on the water at the pump house. Water ran all over the kitchen floor and was dripping from the ceiling in the hallway. A panicked shout to Summer stopped the flood but not before a half dozen towels were needed to soak it up. The leak in the ceiling was easy. I had failed to crimp the rings on two PEX joints. The second not so easy. I had failed to put the valves on the sink lines. I had the valves and I was able to scrape up enough material to get them installed. Finished, at last. But……I forgot to get the hoses for the washer. You could say that Summer was angry as she had run out of clean clothes waiting for the plumbing to be finished. You could say that. But saying that would be a gross understatement. Off I go on my third trip to the hardware store. Ten miles down a two lane black top at a blazing 45 mph. Forty minutes later, I put the hoses on the washer and all was well. Summer began the daunting task of washing two weeks worth of her clothing.
Having solved all of the obvious plumbing problems, I went upstairs to check out the newly operational bathroom. I turned on the water to the sink and the cold water began to run. The cold water handle was in the off position. I turned the under sink valves off. Not a problem I’m going to tackle today. Next I turn on the water for the commode. It filled and filled until it is about to overflow the tank. I shut the water off and tried to flush only to find that the chain was missing. We’d been pouring water from a bucket to flush it since we moved into the house so I was completely unaware of the defective commode parts At that point, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. What I did do was go downstairs and make myself a vodka drink and call it a day.
Summer seasoned some chicken thighs and wrapped them in foil. These she placed on the shelf in the wood stove. When she unwrapped the for dinner they were fall off the bone tender. We had some baked beans as a side and had no dessert as we had eaten all of the Nutter Butters last evening.