it's Friday night

It's been a week.
Before I describe the trivialities, let's think of Mary.
Mary is the most selfless person I've ever heard of and I'm going to be thinking of her this weekend.
We'll think of Mary, and K's aunt who is very sick, and you, if you need us to.
My friend A is done with her treatment and is recovering nicely.
We are all well, though Oldest had a tough week, he's doing better tonight.
And then there's the ants.
I'll tell you the story of the ants.

The shower, upstairs (in the bathroom renovated, what? five years ago?) has been leaking. Bad grout, poor tiling, it's hard to tell. Long story short (for this part), K took down about one square foot of dining room ceiling where a leak from above left a water stain. Then, after several experiments with a garden hose brought up from outside and into the bathroom through the window, he determined what needed fixing and fixed it. Twice. Presently, it seems to be staying dry.

But, what about ants, you wonder?
Well, we had ants last summer. We took special care to wrap things or put them in plastic containers but we still saw ants. Big ants. We found them in the kitchen and up in our bedroom and sometimes in the bathroom that was leaking. We put down baking soda, we sprayed, we laid traps and we left dryer sheets in the pantry. We did just about everything we read about, but the ants persisted.

When the weather turned colder there were fewer of them and we let ourselves think we had won the battle.
But they came back.
K lobbied for total ant detection and removal, which would entail removing the cabinets on the wall under the leaky bathroom (which backs on the chimney). I disagreed. I couldn't imagine the work involved and thought we'd never get the cabinets re-installed properly.
But, yesterday, Oldest opened some cookies and they were infested and K had had enough.
He emptied four cabinets and removed them from the wall.
He found black mold. He took down sheetrock and found a giant ant nest.
Luckily for me, I was at work.
Middle (who was assisting) said the wall was so infested that they had to walk away for a few minutes to decide on a strategy.
They beat the ants but my kitchen is all over the house.
The shower had been leaking into the kitchen wall too and we are hopeful that part of the house is dry now.
We'll wait and see, K will replace the wall and re-install the cabinets and we'll decide if we need to gut the bathroom (which we don't really have the budget for).

I'm writing about all of this because it's easier to write about trivial matters like sheetrock and ants than it is to discuss Aunts and losses.

It's Friday night. We're looking forward to the weekend.


Oh. Dear. On all fronts.
kmkat said…
Don't quote me on this, but I think those big ants my be carpenter ants. They only eat rotted wood. I'll let you do the research to confirm or deny this. I'm just passing on my (infinitesimal) bit of knowledge.

On the sadness front, there was an article in the WSJ last week about how doctors choose to die, and they would largely have agreed with Mary's family on their decisions. Dying is part of life and deserves to be treated with respect and compassion, not with a tsunami of technology and pharmaceuticals that in the final analysis only postpone the inevitable for a little piece of time. My heart aches for the family's loss but rejoices that their father did not linger in misery.

RW said…
I cannot even imagine Mary's loss.

and the ants... gosh. K and middle are brave souls.

and I have a shift to work tomorrow and in the grand scheme of things hardly worth complaining about but, I am still bitter about having to work Saturdays now.
Miz S said…
Thanks bb,for the kind words. I saw that article, kmkat. My siblings and I were lucky that we were all in agreement, and that in my father's case it was fairly black and white. He was not going to recover.

Let's all have a trivial and boring weekend! I'm off to look at wedding venues today, which is a delightful distraction from funeral arrangements.
I feel extremely blessed this weekend when so many people are sad. The news is all about the tornadoes.

Oh, the ants...yuck. We discovered a termite infestation while our Cape house was on the market. This was about a week before a pipe burst between the bathroom and the kitchen. At least the buyers got a brand new bathroom!
Poppy B. said…
OMG you poor guys! Good luck with it all. Thank goodness K. is handy. (I love him to death, but I can't imagine the ineptitude if Mr. Buxom tried to deal with this kind of thing himself.)
Paola said…
Hugs to you MizS.

K rocks. Period.
KPB said…
that you have a husband even vaguely motivated to do such things and a son willing to assist gives me hope that my currently-barely-willing-to-breath offspring may turn a proverbial corner.

We had such ant infestation/nesting in our garage once. I will never be able to unsee that.
Anonymous said…
I'm gobsmacked that they DID IT THEMSELVES. I'd have called in professionals. BRAVO, K & CO!
Anonymous said…
I leave you for a weekend and come back to this?? Sheesh! What an ordeal. I mean, it could be worse, but yuck. Congrats to the guys for tackling the job.

Sorry about the family issues...thinking good thoughts for all who need them.