Sunday, January 29, 2006

The House Began To Pitch. Make That The Shed.

Retelling the story that started on January 18th. Windy Wednesday for lack of a better term. The weather forecast said that we could expect winds of up to 60 miles per hour. I drove to work knowing that I had not put my trash cans under cover, and figured I'd simply have to find a lid or two a few feet away from the cans on my return.

During work, I could see a deluge of rain being pushed around by heavy winds giving the ground surface the appearance of the ocean. Wow. I get a phone call cluing me in that power lines are now down all over at home and that school is canceled. Okay, good to know, but I realize that even if the weather seems bad, it makes more sense to just stay at work, rather than have to drive through the storm all the way home.

The storm lessens now at work. The rain and wind are only moderate. I get two phone calls at work just moments apart. I have a metal shed in my back yard. The calls tell me that the wind was so strong that my shed left the back yard, went to my front yard, and then proceeded two houses down the road, putting a large dent in my neighbors siding there. Also that my neighbor and two others are moving the shed back and attempting to place it back the way it was.

At this point I hurry off to get home. I call my insurance agent just to tip them off of the potential claim and so they can advise me in case I need to know anything. Their phone has been off the hook with claims all day.

When I got home, I found out the shed did indeed travel down the street as described. Towns folk spoke of it in the local pizza place. "Did you see the metal shed that got blow down the street?" Two of my next door neighbors and at least one other person dragged the thing and reattached it on to its platform base. Most of the items in the shed were Christmas decorations and clothing. Yet another neighbor (the wife of the man attaching the shed to its base), scurried to pick up as much of the debris as she was able and threw them back into totes. My backyard was littered with pieces of wood several feet long. One of my basement windows was blown out and the outer screen was undamaged. The story I had heard of the damage to the siding on the house was not totally accurate. A small area of siding was broken off the house, and it was not the neighbor's house, but my own.

And of course the shed looks like it had just been tackled by the entire NFL. I walked down the street and found various debris (my Christmas decorations) littering the river bank. The daylight hours are rather short, so my game plan was to start working on things that Saturday.

Saturday arrived and I started hauling out the shed's contents. I just didn't realize how many totes I had in there, nor how heavy they would be if the contents were soaked. My sister arrived and helped me sort out much of contents. End result was that I donated a literal car full of clothing, had a full trash run to do. I had lost most of my Christmas ornaments, but the ones with the greatest sentimental value managed to survive. Yay!

The following Saturday found myself and three members of my family armed with screwdrivers and crowbars demolishing the shed, breaking it down into pieces that could be easily carted to the junk yard for recycling.

Sunday led to the demolition of the wooden platform that the shed once rested on.

Well, I just need to work on the repair of the siding of the house, and the basement window. My shed never made it to Oz, but there is a good chance it will make it to China.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

The Red Kettle Has No Rust

Today, just a brief observation:
During the holiday season I always see people collecting money for the Salvation Army in front of stores. This year had one small twist. Every person seemed to be near high school age. I don't mean some of them, don't mean most of them, I mean every one of them that I saw. What's up with that?