Friday, November 18, 2011

Flashback: Arriving at the Homestead

  It's been a hectic week around here.  DW caught the plague or some such related disease when she went to North Carolina to visit our Grandbaby.  It's hit her pretty hard and she's downright miserable.  We've all but quarantined her from *E* and to some extent myself in order to keep the house from turning into a total trainwreck.  Both parents sick or a sick baby is bad juju!

  I thought I'd write down a little bit more of our trip out to the homestead in North Dakota this summer.  This picks up on our arrival following a nightmare last day of travel (see earlier post for all the gory details).
  We pulled into the yard with both of us totally exhausted from being awake for the last 24 hours or so.  The first disaster was evident right away as all the wood shakes were missing from the top three feet of the roof.  It had been a particularly nasty winter and the old shakes just had no more to give.  Who knows how old that roof was?!!  To add to the fun, there was a hole chewed though the roof planking on the west side just big enough for a racoon.

If you look really hard, you can just see it up near the top. 
  The next fun was of the creepy crawly variety.  We managed to arrive at the height of tick season and as you can see by the above picture, the grass was a good two feet high.  We stepped out of the truck and were instantly covered.  Our poor dog Sparky was an instant walking tick feast and I think DW got more on her in the first ten minutes than she has had in her whole life!  We quickly ran into the house and initiated de-ticking procedures.
  With nerves stretched pretty thin, we took a walk through the house.  Our racoon friend had been busier than we thought and had also chewed a hole in the living room addition's roof.  It made for a nice sun roof but played havoc with the wood floors underneath the carpet.

  To top everything off, we also found that every drain in the house was plugged.  We knew from the previous summer that they weren't quite right but now nothing moved.  We discovered really quickly that not having running water is nothing compared to not having drains!
  It was all too much.  I couldn't stand having  DW and *E* spend the night in that carnage so I disconnected the trailer, packed them back up into the truck and sent them off to the nearest motel, which was over twenty miles away.  Sitting empty for 20 or so years had not been kind to our old house.  As I watched the truck pull out of the yard and drive away down the dirt road I asked myself "What have you gotten us all into?".  I spent almost the entire night and next morning cleaning and knocking down the jungle of grass in front of the house.  It was still a nightmare when they came back the next morning but it was bearable.

  OK, OK, that was pretty depressing!  Here's some gratuitously cute pictures of *E* dressed up as a scarecrow for Halloween to cheer you back up.  Enjoy!

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