On A Break From Vacationing

The New House

Well, we made it back to Rich­mond late last night and were safe­ly back at our jobs today. What was sup­posed to be a relax­ing trip to Ten­nessee to help sort through some of Ange­la’s old things turned out to be a full on mov­ing expe­ri­ence! We got most all of her par­ents’ things from the old house to the new one, though. This was in no small part due to the help of friends and fam­i­ly who came over to lend a lot of help. Jason John­son and Kevin O’Mara earned more thanks than all of us could ever give them by show­ing up on very short notice and work­ing very hard with­out com­plaint to move a lot of fur­ni­ture. My mom and younger broth­er also spared some of their respec­tive days off to come and lend a hand. Just know­ing that you have peo­ple in your life that will help out like that real­ly makes you real­ize how lucky you are. I know you heard it so much you prob­a­bly thought it was a skip­ping record, but I just want to put in writ­ing for all the inter­net to know: thank you all so much for your help. It meant so much to me, Angela, and my in-laws for you to put in hours of labor for us.

I learned some­thing new about my wife that I hon­est­ly either did­n’t know or just had­n’t been able to grasp what it meant until now. She owned more stuffed ani­mals than a car­ni­val ball toss booth. She was­n’t the kind of girl in col­lege that kept them out on her bed dur­ing the day or any­thing, thank good­ness. No, they had been hid­den like Al Capone’s loot in the back of a nev­er opened and thor­ough­ly filled clos­et since she was a lit­tle girl. Upon round­ing the cor­ner one morn­ing while car­ry­ing box­es, I saw what hon­est­ly made my draw drop: shelves from floor to ceil­ing of stuffed ani­mals. There were Care Bears, My Lit­tle Pony, Cab­bage Patch Dolls and Pound Pup­pies. She even had a stuffed Pac Man (although appar­ent­ly my wife had com­plete­ly for­got­ten the waka-waka Pac Man sound effect as she clear­ly demon­strat­ed to me…). It was amaz­ing. Sad­ly, no real pho­to­graph­ic evi­dence was made of just how much stuff was stuffed on those shelves since there was too much sweat­ing and curs­ing going on at the moment to make me want to find the cam­era. How­ev­er, it was real­ly an amaz­ing sight.

While I had real­ly hoped to get a lot more done at the new house in the way of light­ing, fix­tures, and arrang­ing, most of the time in Cookeville was spent just haul­ing stuff. Dave and I did man­age to get at least one ceil­ing fan installed in a guest bed­room (which will be known as the Angela suite for now on), but not with­out some trou­ble. We quick­ly got the old light fix­ture down and the new one up in it’s place, but in my haste I did­n’t do a very good job of pro­vid­ing a sol­id wiring con­nec­tion. In the process of get­ting the fan in place, one or both of the wires came loose and the fan of course then could­n’t work on an open cir­cuit. Grum­bling, Dave and I took it down and I got a good, sound con­nec­tion at both wires. Hop­ing to be sure that this was just my poor wiring skills and not some sort of more dif­fi­cult prob­lem with wiring else­where or the fan itself, I decid­ed to test the fan before actu­al­ly get­ting every­thing put back togeth­er. There’s a rea­son that step is left out of the instruc­tions. While the fan was hang­ing by the tem­po­rary hook which allows for some work­ing room to con­nect wires, I flipped the switch. Well, an un-weight­ed fan gets to top speed very quick­ly and the mass of the fan motor pull the hook off of the ceil­ing mount in an instant. The motor weighed enough to pull itself free of even my now very sub­stan­tial wire splice and came speed­ing straight down onto the bed below. While a very old mat­tress, there was plen­ty of bounce to pop the motor back up into the air and off of the bed onto the (very) hard­wood floor below. The fan was mov­ing a fair­ly good clip and the del­i­cate brass met­al and plas­tic relays stood lit­tle chance of sur­viv­ing impact. In front of my broth­er and mom and in the span of about a sec­ond I went from tri­umphant elec­tri­cal prob­lem solver to a rather embar­rassed broth­er, son, hus­band, and engi­neer. After a fair­ly short silence, Dav­e’s roar­ing laugh­ter made us all feel a lit­tle bit bet­ter about just how hilar­i­ous what we had just watched was.

We quick­ly went over to Lowe’s and bought an iden­ti­cal fan and had the sec­ond up and work­ing in less than ten min­utes after get­ting back to the house. The les­son here: just wire it right in the first place and don’t try and test things in what are obvi­ous­ly stu­pid ways. Wait, that’s not even a les­son; that’s just plain com­mon sense. Some­thing that I would real­ly regret hav­ing mis­placed that after­noon were it not for just how real­ly enter­tain­ing it was to watch that fan motor take flight.

The bad news after this trip, oth­er than just how tired and sore Angela and I both are, was that we did­n’t get to see my big broth­er or my Dad and his wife, Susan, at all. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, there just was­n’t time for us to get to do a lot of the things we real­ly want­ed to dur­ing this trip because what had to be done took a lot of time. Any­way, we’ll have all that much more to enjoy come the Christ­mas hol­i­day sea­son and it sure was good to have the Dyers moved. I know their going to enjoy their new home and we’ll enjoy get­ting to vis­it.

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