When one is renovating a trailer, one can either sit and write about said renovation, or one can visit lumber yards, Habitat for Humanity ReStore locations and hardware stores. One can ponder the meaning of the universe as it connects to the renovation of a 1959 Tour-A-Home or one can get a tetanus shot after one slices one’s finger with a rusty window frame.
Obviously, this one has been doing the latter. “I’m SO behind on my blog,” I whine as I hold a panel of plywood over my head while Boy Child screws it into the ceiling of Daisy. He glares, ever so slightly, asks me to hold it steady, and licks the finger that nearly got screwed into the aforementioned ceiling of Daisy.
“I haven’t updated my blog in three…four…five…weeks,” I enumerate weekly as I chip away at layers of paint and badly done silicone caulk and try to keep the dog from eating it off the ground. Even though his IQ isn’t MENSA material, I really don’t want to see what happens to his six canine brain cells if he ingests lead-based paint.
“Blog?” I whimper at Spousal Unit as he exits the camper, sweating Texas rainfall amounts, after hours of trying to get an air conditioner into the spot we were sure was going to work. He’s put in four hundred hours at his job this week traveling the south making hospitals safe for computers and this is his weekend, his respite, his rest. I close my mouth and hand him a glass of water. He would prefer beer.
“How may I help?” asks Girl Child, seeing my dismay.
“I am so far behind in life. The electricity’s gonna be cut off if I don’t sit down and pay bills. This house is a mess. There’s a stink in the kitchen I can’t find. The dog is bored. And I haven’t written a blog in more than a month.” She looks at me, certain that I just grew a new head covered in warts and oozing green phlegm from pustules.
“I’m going to my room now…” she backs away carefully.
“They’re going to repossess your horse!” I call after her.
Why the frenzy? One word: Bonnaroo. If the word means nothing to the reader, then I suggest the reader look it up. I will never be able to clearly describe nearly one hundred thousand people on a farm outside of Nashville in various stages of maturity and recreational substance use at a music festival. This is our family vacay 2015. And Daisy’s debut. Daisy, who still isn’t completely weatherproof. Who may or may not be road worthy. Who doesn’t have a door. Yes. Bonnaroo.
We aren’t complete idiots and depending solely on Daisy as refuge. We are also renting an RV from a place two hours away and said RV will have amenities, such as a toilet, shower, and kitchen facilities. For what we are paying, it should also be able to airlift us from music stage to music stage at the festival AND keep an eye on my offspring to ensure their good behavior. It should have a hot tub and massage services and feed us three squares a day. Alas, it will just sit there waiting for us to do all of the work. And because we rented TWO VIP camping passes, it will sit alongside Daisy, and we will create a Caldwell Compound of sorts. The Kennedys have their compounds. We have ours. The more time that passes, the more I believe that my late mother-in-law might have been right about me.
And still, we work. We pound. We scrape. We drill. We pound some more. We cuss. We look at the calendar. We pound a little more. We try to figure out what will save some time, but not undermine the quality of Daisy’s renovation. During the demo, we learned that Daisy’s cabinets were beyond repair. By this point, we realized this was more of a remodeling than a restoring and we quit fretting over authenticity. I suggested we go to the Habitat For Humanity ReStore to find cabinets.
Boy Child and I stepped into rehab nirvana. They were thirty minutes from closing on a Friday afternoon and instead of growling at us, Tim welcomed us. We found a bathroom cabinet and a friend. We only brought home the bathroom cabinet.
The next day, Boy Child had his Girl Frand helping us. She’s scraping. I was scraping. Spousal Unit and Boy Child made room for the cabinet. The dog had something in his mouth and I couldn’t catch him. We’ve already made one costly trip to the emergency vet clinic to x-ray a nail in his gut. (He passed it.) Boy Child jumped down from the trailer – wanting to impress Girl Frand, I’m sure – and wrestled the dog to the ground, removing the object from his mouth.
“Is it duct tape?” I asked. It’s blue. And kind of shiny. The color left Boy Child’s face. He held the item in front of himself and whimpered. “It’s a condom package.”
It was as if I were the DEA at a checkpoint on the border. Knowing that I am way past needing birth control, Spousal Unit barked out, “Well, it’s not mine!”
Boy Child’s baby blues opened even wider. “It’s not my brand!” he claimed, overwhelmed with the idea that he was holding a condom – albeit new – that obviously belonged to someone else and not realizing what he was confessing.
“Aick!” squawked Girl Frand, who knew full well what he was confessing. (As if it were news to us.)
The dog looked at us as if to say, “Well, you know it’s not mine. You cut them off, remember? Now let me eat that thing.”
That’s what happens when one buys a bathroom cabinet from a ReStore and one doesn’t check out all of the drawers first. When Boy Child is done bleaching his hands and sanding all of the flesh off of them, I will get back to scraping. Meanwhile, I am SO gonna write a blog.