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Smell the Coffee: Sandy before painting

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- In spite of all the weather warnings, I really hadn't expected to end up home from work on Tuesday. I can't recall the last time I had an unplanned day off that didn't involve chicken soup and a box of tissues, so I was determined to make the most of it.

While my daughter slept (and slept and slept), I found a can of white paint and took on some nicked-up baseboards. Which, of course, led to repainting a dinged-up door. And then some shabby window frames. And then the wall surrounding the window.

All this, of course, made the cabinets look decrepit, so I found a second can of paint and took them on next.

The room was beginning to look pretty sharp. Except for the chairs.

I repainted the chairs.

Then the base of the table.

By this point, I was thoroughly exhausted, so I headed to my bedroom to take a short nap. Except there's this new thing in my bedroom -- a recently added water feature. I know fountains are the rage and all, and the sound of running water is supposed to provide a lulling to sleep, but when the fountain is centered directly above the bed and comes by way of a water-soaked ceiling, it's hard to generate much enthusiasm for its presence.

The evening before, I'd been too tired to deal, so I'd shoved my bed practically into the closet to avoid the leak. But that had been a late-night desperation move. I knew it needed relocated completely. What better time to do that than during a day off from work?

Disassembling and moving my large and extraordinarily heavy antique iron bed was no small feat, especially considering that I needed a place to move it to. So before I could even begin, I first needed to empty the dining room, which would serve as my makeshift bedroom until the ceiling was fixed.

As I slogged my way through moving the furniture, I became more and more tired, and less and less careful. That I survived moving my massive old television without either breaking it or pancaking myself was a miracle. It took a little less than two hours, but eventually, the move was complete.

Except much of my furniture had been badly dinged during the move.

So I pulled out the paint to touch up the nicks.

And then I noticed the baseboards.

And the door frame.

And the window trim.

If you hear of a South Charleston fatality blamed on Hurricane Sandy, now you know the story behind it.

Reach Karin Fuller at karinfuller@gmail.com.


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