Thursday, April 11, 2013

Demolition Day In Our Kitchen......

The count down is over, and the mess has begun!  Yesterday morning started out like any other first with our weekly Spanish lesson then with a lesson of another sort.  What happens when a cement counter top is demolished?  A big mess of cement dust and chunks of cement spread all over the house.  Under the cement that was poured onto the counter was a layer of steel rebar that ran horizontally along the whole thing.  So far it's been about two hours and already half of the old counter is history, vanished into a pile of rubble.  I've stopped to blog about the day because Clyde ran off to have the tires from his garden trailer repaired.  We've been filling up buckets with the cement pieces and he's been putting them into his little red, tow behind garden wagon that he pulls with his lawn tractor.  Down the road he goes to dump the cement pieces onto the side of the road, to fill in a pothole in the dirt that we actually ran into one night. And before he returned I demolished a small brick wall that framed one side of the stove.  It was my first attempt using a sledgehammer and it felt good to destroy something.

The start of the demolition

"Maybe" I am too old for this hard labor

Terry thought I was going to catch myself on fire
We filled up 18 of these
but who's counting.

Set them placein just to see if they would fit

Day one ended around 4pm, about five hours or so after we started but it probably felt much longer for my poor husband who was doing most of the work.  The old counter is gone and the new cabinets have been set into place and fit almost perfect.  Since I couldn't live with the layer of cement dust on everything I had to clean.  After using the vacuum I mopped the floors over and over so we could at least walk around without getting dirty. I had to wipe down the couch and end tables too before we could use them since everything was covered with dust.

Clyde cooked dinner in the dining room since that's where the stove is temporarily parked.  He made his scrumptious chicken Parmesan with avocado the night before so the chicken was cooked, but he had to add the toppers.  He added some red sauce, sliced avocado, mozzarella cheese and popped it into the oven to heat.  Since I didn't want to make a salad in the mess I simply ate an orange after the chicken, then some crackers with peanut butter later on for both of us.  Our dinner table was the couch since that's about the only place we could find to sit down.  Clyde downed some beers to make his aches and pains go away from swinging the sledge hammer so long.  We washed the few dishes from dinner in one of the bathroom sinks before crashing on the couch for the night.

The refrigerator is also in the dining room and the dining room table is covered with everything that we pulled out of the kitchen cabinets and off the top of the counter.  Since everything is covered with a layer of cement dust it'll all have to be cleaned before being put in the new cabinets and drawers.  Clyde's plan for today is to level the cabinets, hook up the sink and dishwasher and hopefully install the granite counter tops too.

After that he still has top cabinets to build and hang along with covering the two huge pantries that sit at the entrance to the kitchen.  But because of windows above the counter there's only enough room for two cabinets on the wall. And since house projects are never-ending, especially when one has a wife to come up with new projects, there's always more to be done.  Clyde wants to replace the old decorative trim that lines the top of the kitchen walls, maybe with stone to match the pass-through in the kitchen that he added and trimmed last year. 

Many men talk about the projects that need to be done but not all of them actually do them.  When Clyde worked as a firefighter the other guys at his fire station called him "the finisher."  He didn't just talk about things he wanted to accomplish but actually did them and in a timely manner.  The kitchen project here has been on hold for so long because of the long wait for the kiln-dried wood.  Clyde was ready to get started a long time ago.

A brand new kitchen is in the works as we breathe new life into this old Panamanian style home.  But not before more headaches, muscle pains and lots of sweat equity for these retirees.....along the gringo trail.

1 comment:

  1. Looking good! Clyde, you have outdone yourself this time!


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