Tuesday, May 13, 2008

More travels along handyman lane

What I'm reading: Hunter Kiss by Marjorie M. Liu

What I'm working on: Fozzie's Book -- I might have to kill my heroine's best friend; she's starting to get far too interesting.

Day 3 (which should have been Last Day but isn't)
We get a call that Worker #1 is running about half an hour late. Minor shock that she called at all. She arrives at 8:40, only 10 minutes later than the predicted half hour. Says her partner is right behind her. She starts to work. Worker #2 shows up at about 9:30, mumbles hello and starts working. No mention of where the heck she was on Friday.

There's an issue with the old drywall adhering to the baseboard under the kitchen window, but they don't want to replace the baseboard, so they struggle to take care of it, conversing in whispers. Eventually, it's done. Worker #2 says she's going to pick up more supplies. Sandpaper blocks? These aren't things that a contractor carries as a matter of course? Guess not.

The house is quiet, and I notice Worker #1 isn't here, either. About an hour later, Worker#2 returns, and disappears within the next hour without a word. The drywall is now up. Still no return of Worker #1. Working hypothesis is that they have another job in progress and are shuffling back and forth, since they have to let the drywall stuff dry. I begin to get irked, because I've arranged my schedule to be home while they're working, and if they'd told me they were going to be gone for as long as they have, I could have run errands. After all, I've got my daughter coming into town tomorrow night, and she'll probably want to eat.

Worker #2 returns with a soda, saying Worker #1 is right behind her. Time and communication seem to have different meanings to contractors and those who work for them. But, for the next hour or so, they are both busy. One's spackling, one's caulking. They swear that all they'll have to do tomorrow is paint, and they'll definitely be done with the inside work. We'll see. Meanwhile, there's a coat of dust over everything, they've been far less diligent about picking up debris, and Worker #1 says, "Is 8 tomorrow morning good?" I say yes, and whoosh – they've vanished. Glad I was in the kitchen to request they put the fridge back where it belongs so I can open it before they did. A quick inspection of the day's work has me wondering how they can come in and start painting first thing. Looks like there's still a lot of wall prep to be done. But they don't get paid until they finish. I think I'll let my husband be the one who decides if the job is acceptable.


Katie Reus said...

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they finish when they say they will. When I lived up in NC, we had some guys come in and redo the entire central air system of a rental...they didn't cover any of our furniture and when they were through, it looked like a bomb of dust had exploded over my living room and kitchen. DH was overseas at the time and the rental company refused to return any of my calls so I was stuck cleaning everything :(

Terry Odell said...

If there are any guarantees, I think it's that nothing will go as planned.

Savanna Kougar said...

Omygosh, that's why I have this fantasy that I can do it all myself, which I can't. Hey, there's a novel for you -- the perfect hero to the rescue of remodeling your house -- don't I wish!

Terry Odell said...

Thanks, Savannah -- actually, Blake in What's in a Name? arrived in the guise of a handyman. He had the skills.