Science

Don’t Cry Over Spilled Orange Juice and Clogged Toilets, Instead Be Thankful for Double-Decker Boats

September 7, 2017

I remember slinking through the aisles of the grocery store when my mom had asked me to run out and grab some toilet paper.  I had to balance the desire to drive somewhere with having to buy toilet paper of all things.  Driving obviously won out. 🙂

Matters concerning the bathroom are better-off kept behind closed doors.  This applies to most folks, but definitely not to children in the midst of potty training or those who have fallen under the ‘dirty diaper’ wizardry of The Diary of a Wimpy Kid.

Of course these days, I’m rolling through Target with that giant package of Charmin perched with pride on top of everything else in the cart.

Saturday morning I dropped a brand new gallon of orange juice onto the floor and the container burst open spilling every last ounce of juice all over the kitchen floor and into the dining area.  I had good helpers, who after inquiring as to why I did such a thing, ran to grab towels, so I could sop it all up.  I then proceeded to mop the floors.  Twice.

Silver lining in hand, I concluded they needed to be washed anyway and felt thankful after breakfast for having clean floors.  But I was feeling a little low on Vitamin C and silently hoped no back-to-school germs had latched onto me. 😉

Later that day, the toilet off of the kids’ room clogged.  The same helpers came running with towels on the ready as I prayed to the good Lord above to keep the water contained below the lid.  I have prayed and made promises over toilets before, but under different circumstances.  😉  The outcome has never been what I wished.

It is interesting.  The leasing company has a plunger in our rental that is emblazoned with their name.  Hmmm.  I wonder if the former tenants had issues?  Let’s see.  This toilet has clogged every week or two since we moved in in May.  I have yet to be successful at conquering the clog and have surrendered every time, closing the lid and placing a handmade stop sign on it so the kids don’t use it.

I then wait patiently for my husband to return from whatever business trip he is on.  Wielding the plunger, he is always successful at returning the toilet to working order.  I even called him this time to ask what technique he uses.

I was unable to emulate it.

We have lived with one toilet before when we lived in the tiny house.  It is doable.  It is not ideal, but certainly not impossible.

This particular instance though, he left the day before toiletageddon 2017 for a ten-day business trip to the other side of the world.  I gave myself a pep talk that we could manage.  I didn’t want to bother the landlord with our toilet matters and all things considered, I resolved we would survive.

That is until….until Sunday.

After returning from a great outing in Charlotte with friends, our second (and last) toilet clogged.   I was up for the plunger challenge, but after countless (and valiant) attempts I was unable to return the toilet to a usable status.  I called the management company and the dude in charge (who obviously didn’t want to resolve the problem within any reasonable timeframe) rattled off excuses about the holiday on Monday, the fact that he, himself, was at the beach and encouraged me – worst case – that he would resolve it upon his return the next evening.

Allow me to pause in this toilet debacle dissertation to say, he cautioned me, “If you go stay with family for the next day, make sure you turn off the water because if there is a leaky flap the toilet could overflow and then there will be and even bigger problem.”

I whimpered back that I didn’t have family that close by to stay with.

I hung up feeling somewhat badly for interrupting his vacation, but with a growing distaste for our renter/land lord relationship.

Folks.  He could have cared less, but I maintained composure knowing that the next day we had fun plans at a friend’s house on the lake (scroll down to see pictures).  I theorized, if desperate enough, I could head over there early and leverage her modern-day plumbing.

The next morning I awoke with fervor (did not brew my coffee – for obvious reasons) and decided I was conquering toilet number one. Four bladders were depending upon me.  And, it overflowed onto the floor.  Not the bladders – the toilet.  Same difference (eye roll).  Weak from my toilet battles, I called my husband on the other side of the Earth, tears welling up in my eyes, and asked him to call the landlord to see if he could get a different outcome.  He left him a message with a plumbing ultimatum.

Then, I swiftly carted my people to the grocery store to use the restroom.

True story.

Thank you local Food Lion for having such lovely and clean restrooms right by the front door.

The short end of this long story is that only after I had called a plumber, and advised the head dude via text that he was going to pay for it, did he call me back.  And, he didn’t reference my text at all – only that my husband had called him and he was circling back with me because of that.  Of course.

A maintenance man was over within the hour.  He was working on Labor Day, across town painting another unit.  The gentleman was a gem and apologized for taking a little while to get to me.  He had to get to a stopping point and clean his brushes.

Isn’t it puzzling the difficulty with getting an employee to come and help me on a holiday.  You know.  The one who is already working on the holiday to get another unit ready for renting.

Right.

But he got us back in working order and we went on to have a lovely day with two of my sweet friends and their wonderful children.  We met up at one of their houses, which is on the lake and super close to where we are building.  She has this epic two story pontoon boat, which is…well, epic.

Pontoon Crew - Toilet Post

Pontoon Jump - Toilet Post

Pontoon Jump 2 - Toilet Post

Pencil Dive - Toilet Post

That last one is my favorite.  My youngest is opining to my friend’s daughter about his pencil formation in mid-air.

But after all of that toilet nonsense, I am left wondering if the snakes have returned to the attic, or worse yet if perhaps they are the reason behind the poorly functioning toilets??

Call me paranoid, but it has been known to happen!

Look.  I do not want to die of a heart attack ignited by a snake gazing up at me as I sit down on the toilet!  Not on these faux tile linoleum floors.  Bleach is good, but does it really get into those dents well enough?!

I suppose it is a matter of perspective and finding the silver lining. 🙂

We have a hurricane barreling down on the east coast that is predicted to reek havoc here in the Carolinas…even several hours inland where we are.  A friend who grew up not far from here said they were without power for two weeks when Hurricane Hugo hit in the late 80s.  I remember the flooding it caused around my hometown in Southwest Virginia.

Texans are still recovering from Hurricane Harvey.

I have plenty to be thankful for, but I did ask the builder yesterday when he thought our house might be done.  He hasn’t gotten back to me yet, but here is a picture of the latest progress!

House Progress - Toilet PostOh, and Mom – if you are reading this – can we come and stay with you all for the weekend in case Hurricane Irma plans to do damage here? 🙂

XO Mom and everyone,
Melissa


Hurricanes

Hurricanes are a type of tropical cyclone and are called hurricane because they develop over the Atlantic or eastern Pacific Ocean.  The same storm is called a cyclone if it develops over the Bay of Bengal or the Indian Ocean and a typhoon if it develops over the western Pacific.

A cyclone forms due to the collision of warm and cold air resulting in the large rotating weather system.  They form over the warm waters near the equator and are like engines that use warm, moist air as fuel.  The warm, moisture-laden, low-pressure air begins to rise.  As the cooler air rushes in it is also warmed and hydrated and begins to move up.  When the system organizes itself and begins to spin it gathers force and develops into a tropical depression.  When the winds reach 39 miles per hour it is classified as a tropical storm.  Then, when the winds reach 74 miles per hour it is reclassified as a hurricane or other major storm, depending upon the region.

Hurricane - Toilet Post

The Saffir-Simpson scale is used to categorize hurricanes.  Hurricane Harvey was a category 4 and Hurricane Irma is a Category 5.  A category 1 hurricane has wind speeds of 74-95 miles per hour and a category 5 has wind speeds of 157 miles per hour or higher.  The damage of a category 5 hurricane is catastrophic.

Hurricanes are named beginning with the letter A alternating the gender of the name from male to female with each letter sans Q, U, X, Y and Z.  The World Meteorological Organization generates a list at the beginning of every season.  Here are the 21 Atlantic hurricane names for 2017:  Arlene, Bret, Cindy, Don, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irma, Jose, Katia, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Philippe, Rina, Sean, Tammy, Vince, Whitney.  If there are more than 21 storms, the storm is named with Greek alphabet names starting with Alpha.

Wishing everyone in the path of Irma safety!

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