|Early morning…a great blue heron takes a drink from the rain-refurbished river.|
It rained last night. A long, soaking drizzle which began about 9:00 p.m. and continued until an hour or so before dawn. The passing storm cooled things off considerably, invigorating the air, while the steady drip and patter coming through the open screen provided great ambient noise for sleeping. Today, the landscape looks fresh-scrubbed and the river seems livelier—murky rather than muddy, up by maybe a couple of inches.
For the past few days I've been working on the final phase of our bathroom remodel. This necessitated removing drywall off two walls, rerouting various electrical lines and fixtures, plus making several temporary plumbing adjustments—even though a neighbor and I plan to convert the cottage's entire plumbing system to PEX in a couple of weeks.
Neither the bathroom or laundry area, the two rooms in which I was working, offer much ventilation. With all the drywall dust being created, fans were not an option. So in a "dead air" room of a non-air-conditioned house, outside temperatures of 90˚F and higher assure sauna-like working conditions inside. Hot, stuffy, tough on breathing. Sort of like working inside a nailed-shut coffin.
I drank water by the gallon, sweated it out as fast as it went in, and had the quickly discharging energy capacity of an old iPhone battery that needed replacing years earlier. Not fun.
Occasionally I needed a break from these sessions of necessary abuse—when the heat, exhaustion, lack of oxygen, dust inhaled into my lungs, and near-blindness caused by the steady bath of salty sweat streaming into my eyes became unbearable. So I adjourned to the side yard where I'd set up my sawhorses and work tables, for an alternate project constructing a floor-to-ceiling cabinet for the bathroom.
Yes, the oxygen supply outdoors was more plentiful. And I am indeed smart enough to have placed my work site in the shade under several towering sycamores. But 92˚F in the shade is still 92˚F…an oven is still an oven! And the once-per-hour lethargic stirring of the air—not anywhere close to being sufficient to call a breeze—brought little in the way of relief.
But I persevered, prevailed, and survived. I think. And yesterday evening, amid much shoving, cajoling—and when that failed, judiciously applied application of a few vicious whacks with a rubber mallet—Myladylove and I managed to set this recalcitrant cabinet in place.
Now, if only it stays cool for awhile…