Wasted Day

snow blocks 0319
Another project that got ignored on the non-stucco run to Montrose: the roof is shedding snow in large blocks, which are blocking the back porch. It’s a metaphor.

The most wasted day is that in which we have not laughed.

–Sébastien-Roch Chamfort

There are days when I think I might just as well retire right now, because by the time I get done running around trying to manage the rest of my life, it leaves no room left for work. Yesterday was one of those days.

Lynn and I had tried to plan a trip to Montrose all week, and we were pointing toward Friday. But the weather’s supposed to take a turn (imagine!), and since Kara is headed out the door for 10 days (off to London, pip pip cheerio), it was starting to sound prudent that I be at work Friday (ha! More on that in a moment).

So we made a rather last-minute decision to go Thursday afternoon instead. For awhile it seemed like I might never get there. First, the court appearance that I expected to last five minutes took an hour due to Y’s tardiness, and on the house front we’ve gone from a week where Lynn was sure absolutely nothing was happening to it feeling like everything is happening at once.

The gas fireplace that was a rush, then wasn’t, now is, and there was an immediate — immediate — need for a deposit. We’ve been dithering on exterior colors for the house, but now we instantly need to start putting a roof on, to protect the insulation and drywall that may be getting installed tomorrow or three weeks from now. If we’re going with our current internet provider, they like to run their own special wire and that should be done now. But we can’t go with our current provider, because some hill somewhere is blocking delivery of their signal to our new location. And the Solarize project that doesn’t close until the end of April needs to run wiring through the attic prior to insulation, and so they want a decision right now on which of three options I want to go with. Along, of course, with a deposit.

So I watered my plants, and that it was it for my appearance at work. Instead, I went to Western Lumber to get a sample of the roof color we’d like the HOA’s blessing on (approval that arrived as I was composing this). I took a deposit to the fireplace place, where I was told it wasn’t enough. These folks buy sweatshirts from me, and I don’t require a deposit, nor do I ask for payment on pick-up, confident that they will send a check in a week or two — which is what happens. But the owner seemed sure that I was going to stiff him for the balance, and won’t put anything in motion until the “deposit” covers all the materials, or 90 percent of the total bid.

Not only is this insulting,  it’s also another suck of time out of my work day today. Except that Dusty volunteered to take over on this issue, and I’m going to let him.

With the morning completely shot, Lynn and I set out for Montrose. We had stone and stucco samples to return, and we were hoping the stucco place would have some grays and stucco finishes that we could look at. But we never found the stucco place, despite an impressive Industrial Tour of Montrose.

I had been to the company’s website, and where I made my mistake was in assuming the picture of a building prominently displayed at the top of the site was where their showroom was located. The building says “ReMax,” but it’s a large two-story building with room to share. And it turns out, ReMax does share space with another company, but apparently the reason it’s at the top of the page is as an example of stucco work rather than any direct affiliation with the stucco company.

The back of one of the samples was stamped “Out West Drywall,” so we tried to go there. What business offers store hours of 6:30 a.m.-3 p.m.? Why, Out West does — and it was just after 3. Then we traveled most of the way to Olathe, looking for 4078 N. Townsend. We found RVs and fireplaces, bricks and newspapers, UPS . . . but no stucco. A subsequent call to Dusty back in Gunnison suggested Casias mostly operates out of a home office, and maybe things could have been dropped off at the fireplace place — but even that wasn’t clear.

By then we were on South Townsend, and I was not willing to just drive endlessly up and down a road with more traffic than capacity, particularly when every driver in Montrose was in too big a hurry to stop or even yield. So we wrote off the stucco — not happily, mind you — and went to Home Depot.

I just cannot say anything good about Home Depot. I don’t like it. It seems as though the intended vibe is that you’re getting a special tour into some company’s warehouse. Equipment and half-opened cartons are left scattered everywhere. To look at carpet samples, we had to step over and between the tines of a forklift. This seems like Liability of the Highest Order to me, but maybe it’s just “ambiance” to them.

They had totes on a “blow-out sale,” but no lids and no prices. When I could find prices, on tiny totes, the “blowout” appeared to be a 50-cent savings. One employee had offered to help us early on, although I thought we were just wandering, but then when I did want help (how much are the totes and where are the lids?), there were suddenly three people clamoring for his attention. We left with a tiny square of a floor sample (we couldn’t find samples for most of the floor types we liked), and I may have made a decision to just send Lynn and Dusty in if we’re ever required to put in an appearance there again.

Then we went to Target, another self-serve big-box, but I like it a lot better than Home depot. No forklifts left lying around. However, while there, Lynn thought she heard some mumbled announcement about a dog running around the parking lot, and when we returned to our car, no dog was in it.

By now it was after 5, and I had visions of learning Oz had been picked up by animal control, which would have closed at 5, necessitating a deer-ridden trip back to Montrose today, but Lynn located him inside, behind the service counter.

So really nothing good came of the trip to Montrose, other than lunch at A&W/Long John Silver’s. And we do now have HOA approval for our revised color scheme. But instead of heading to work on time, I now need to discuss solar panel options, sign contracts and dig up a deposit. I should just retire.


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