Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Finally, News

As you may have noticed, we've had an extended period of enforced hibernation waiting for somebody to tell us something. Today we finally had our fire inspection...and the news is mixed.

On the one hand, we've been assured that our house has not burned down...nor is it particularly likely to do so due to bad wiring, inappropriate storage of flammables, or any of the usual hazards. On the other hand, if a fire were to start in our basement, we would probably die before we knew there was a problem.

Talk about your wake-up call.

The people who built this house clearly ran out of money before giving the house back to the bank. They sank a lot into it before giving it up as a bad job, so we have excellent siding, shingles and foundation; they did not, however, finish the basement. And when I say they didn't finish it, I'm not kidding. No wall board or anything. They used forms for pouring the basement that came with styrofoam insulation preattached on the inside, which is fine...until it catches on fire and eliminates all forms of life in the house from the fumes. Bacteria would not survive.

The fire marshall, being on top of his game, blithely informed us that along with a couple of other minor things that can be taken care of in an evening with materials we already have, we must also put up wallboard over all exposed styrofoam on the walls before being allowed to be showered with the blessings of pseudo-parenthood. That's bad enough in itself, but further problems arise when you consider that we want that basement to be finished and finished well. We had planned to do so all along, but only as we got the money, time and energy. Now we have to do it right now, which means that we have to get the electrical wiring in place before putting up the wallboard. Who wants a basement when you can't have a pinball machine, soda fountain and cheesy decorative light above the pool table?

Who you gonna call? Dad!

My parents are the most wonderful, forebearing people on the face of this planet or any other. They were here within 4 hours to begin emergency operations, and will be here for an unknown period of days. Ya think they want grandchildren out of this deal?

I call the electrical inspector in the morning to arrange for a permit and get any necessary instructions so we won't have to rip out a bunch of wallboard because something doesn't meet expectations. Tonight we picked up some special glue-caulk and 250 ft. of 12-guage wire. The Wife and Dad will be running to Menard's tomorrow to get junction boxes, extra sheetrock screws, and assorted other electrical and sheetrocking materials, and they will begin operations that I will join immediately upon getting home from work.

No rest for the wicked...but I hope and pray and plan to have this gig in the bag by Thanksgiving. Looks like we'll have the basement-finishing project much further along much faster than I thought even this morning.

The greatest news is that I think we're done with the fire inspector. The three changes he ordered simply need to be verified when they're done by our licensing social worker, and that would be the day we sign contracts and become officially licensed. "Vicki" has already informed us that when that day gets here, if there are placements available she'll probably be on our step with some Little Darlings in tow.

This is much, much, MUCH easier to take when there are concrete actions we can take ourselves to hurry the process along. Sitting around waiting for who-knows-what was starting to stress my vital organs. This I can handle.



At 5:30 PM , Anonymous Auntie J said...

Screw the turkey...let's work...or can we get sis to throw the turkey down the stairs so we can eat and work at the same time.?


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