Housekeeping has informed me your room is ready.

I never drink water; that is the stuff that rusts pipes.
~W. C. Fields

Tuesday, February 17th, seemed pretty normal for most of the day. Shmoo got home about 15 minutes before me, grabbed the dog and took her out back to potty. When he got downstairs, there was water EVERYWHERE. So when I got home a few minutes later at 5:30, he was walking out to meet me, and everything was suddenly chaos and crap.

By the time an hour had passed the leak had been found, the plumbers had cut and repaired the pipe, and an insurance claim had been opened.
(Forgive the photo blurriness. They were taken with our phones cause it’s easy.)

The pipe that burst was nestled in between the two floors, so when it realized it was really upset about being frozen and fucked right off, the water just poured down the wall and flooded the entire guest room, out into the laundry room and was making it’s way towards the rest of downstairs when we got home.
water flowing the down in the walls

This is our souvenir.
the pipe
That tear that looks like a smiling mouth is not much wider across than a quarter. There was so much water and it was coming so fast into the other rooms, near as we can figure, the frozen spot only thawed shortly before we got home.

And here’s where the plumbers ripped out our friend the angry pipe…
the scene of the crime
Did you know that when you have a leak in your walls, they just start cutting holes in shit until they find where it is? Yeah.

I’m going to stop for a moment now, and show you a photo of our ceiling, just in case you missed the disaster it was all on it’s very own.
the most awesomest ceiling ever
Why yes, that is basically 1x12s around the edge of the room, with vinyl lattice work over black landscape fabric. And yes, it was totally awful and made everyone who looked at it state “what the hell? I don’t even know how to write this down…” and look at us all confused for an explanation. To which our reply was “We just bought this a little over a year ago, and it came like this. I’m sorry.”

So, back to the train-wreck… Basically everyone who has ever had pipes had one freeze the same week we did. So the water mitigation folks who normally would have been out that night or next day couldn’t come until Friday, and there were no other available companies in the area. We know this because we called a bunch of them. After 3 days of standing water, the carpet was certainly a loss and they ended up taking out one whole wall, one half wall, the rest of the walls to one foot up from the floor, and half the fabulous custom ceiling.
And this is what that looks like:
look ma, no walls!
and no ceiling too
Now, you’ve noticed that they took the walls, but not the insulation, which also got wet and had to be removed before repairs could actually start. This is because it was so damned cold while the water removal was happening that they were afraid it would lead to all the pipes in the house freezing if they took it out.

So if you’ve made it this far, I’m just going wrap this up by saying that we had a bit of back and forth with the insurance company and the restoration folks, and while I am not really happy with the restoration people, I’ll live. The repair work started on Friday, March 20th and they had guys out here for 4.5 days, and the last day was Friday, March 27th. It’s done. We’ve cleaned and gotten everything back into the room and all fixed up and now it’s ready for guests!

panorama from the doorway
panorama from the corner opposite the doorway

We love the room and are happy with the final result, which is good, because shmoo’s family is due in this week. They had planned to come out for Cherry Blossom Festival before the pipe incident and we’ve been feeling a bit of stress about getting everything done. But it is. The guest room is restored, my craft room is now also a secondary guest room, and later this week our new furniture we ordered several months ago will finally be here as well, which means the current sofa will finally make it’s long awaited move to the den/bar where it too can be an ad hoc bedroom.

It’s like we’re grown-ups or something…

2 Replies to “Housekeeping has informed me your room is ready.”

  1. That sort of excitement I can do without. It was an interesting ceiling in a domestic setting – I guess they didn’t attempt to put it back as it was?

  2. At least you had the best insurance in the world! USAA rocks :-) and… the room appears to have a standard issue and more energy conserving ceiling now :-D

    I still hope to get to come see you there. Hope you have a good visit with Phyllis and Patty.


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