Today was supposed to be a fairly forthright day. It isn’t that I didn’t have a ton to do, but that I had a plan for what I was going to do. I intended to get the wee ones ready for school, get a couple posts written, get to the gym, exchange a too sheer curtain, run a couple loads of laundry, make dinner, bake a coffee cake for a party tomorrow, and so forth.
Well, Mr. Murphy, welcome to my home this lovely Monday.
I am spoiled. I’ll admit that. In my ideal life, I have a fairy who shows up to magically clean my house. The laundry does itself. Clean a bathroom? Ha! Once upon a time, I had a cleaning lady who at least did the big jobs. I still had to do my own laundry and dishes, but it was better than nothing, though even she’s long gone.
Silly me for wishing I lived more like a princess. Today? Today was definitely a Monday.
This morning, I walked into the bathroom downstairs and stepped into a huge water puddle. The toilet wasn’t leaking, nor was it backed up, so I notified my landlord (ahhhh the joys of renting again) and changed my socks. As the wee ones were mostly ready for school, I walked into the laundry room to start putting away clean clothes from Saturday. And I saw where the flood had originated. The floor was covered in water.
Groaning, I carefully rescued the dry clothes that I could, tossing the newly wet clothes back into the washing machine to deal with later. I notified my landlord that there was more water – good news! As I started cleaning up, I noticed that the tile drain in the laundry room was bubbling up. And up came more water, right after I finished mopping up the water that had been on the floor.
After shouting at the wee ones to quickly bring me a towel, I found myself in possession of two of my good bathroom towels, but… beggars can’t be choosers. They now line the drain tile in a circle in an attempt to contain any future eruptions. The problem? The flooring allows water to get under it, so I can step on it and squish water out towards the drain. And I can’t get at the water under the washing machine.
As the wee ones were heading out the door, Mister Man informed me in a not so calm voice that the floor of the coat closet was also a lake. Everything on the floor was soaked from my husband’s (no longer missing) leather glove to Little Miss’s boot liners to rugs and more. Awe.Some.
We won’t mention the periodic funky smell I catch from time to time in my kitchen. And the scratching of my head as to what I am going to do with everything that’s wet sitting in my washing machine right now. And the obvious fact that there was no way I could make it to the gym today.
I can’t take a shower because I can’t run water. I can’t really go to the bathroom for the same reason. I can’t prepare dinner because I can’t wash my hands or dishes. I can’t run the dishwasher. I can’t make that coffee cake for my friend’s party tomorrow morning. I can’t even make and eat the breakfast I was planning to because I need to wash the blender right away or the smoothie still inside will never come out.
My list of can’ts is pretty long. My potential complaints? Just as long, especially as my landlord doesn’t seem to be quite as concerned about the water that seeped through walls and under flooring (and what kind of water is coming from the tile drain anyway?) as I would like him to be.
I am about as far away from a life of luxury where my every wish is taken care of by someone else as I ever have been in my life, but I’m not going to focus on the negative. I’m not going to spend today complaining endlessly. I’m on my fourth pair of socks for the day. I no longer both to change both socks when one needs to go, so they don’t match at the moment. I’ve cleaned the bathroom and the kitchen. I’ve gotten work done that needed to get done. And I have a backup plan if the plumber isn’t able to fix the issue soon.
Welcome to the neighborhood, family of six that moved into the place next to me last night and discovered this morning that this perhaps isn’t quite the upgrade they were hoping for. I’m not blaming them – they had no idea showers and laundry would have this effect (though I do wish they’d realized earlier that continuing to run water was making things worse for both of us) and only moved in last night so are far more inconvenienced than I am.
I’ll never have a fleet of servants to do my every bidding. I’ll never live in the lap of luxury with no chores to face, but I’m ok with that. Especially at this time of year with Christmas so close, I’m focusing on what I do have – my health, my family, my friends, and more. There are so many others who have so much less, whose problems are so much greater than my own.
The post was inspired by the book “Lady Catherine, The Earl, and the Real Downtown Abbey” by the Countess of Carnarvon. It is part of the From Left to Write book club where we don’t write traditional book reviews but rather write posts inspired by the books we read.