Friday, December 11, 2009

How NOT to Get Ready for Vacation, Part Two

As if the specter of disease wasn’t enough, the plumbing is acting up. I should have known something was up the other day when the dishwasher poured water onto the kitchen floor. But I was too harried to think it through. Instead I blamed it on Matthew who is the dishwasher loader this month. I figured Matt must have spilled too much water into the door of the dishwasher, and then when he closed it, it poured onto the floor. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, it’s not accurate.

This afternoon, Matt called me. I thought, “Leave me alone! I’m trying to get things ready for vacation.” Matt was insistent. I hrumphed my way to the kitchen. He pointed to the problem. The water in the sink wasn’t draining. What is it about holidays and plumbing!? I remember depositing our entire family plus houseguests on the doorstep of a friend (Nancy, you are amazing!) with about one hour’s notice because our plumbing was completely shut down, which meant no sinks, no laundry, no toilets. Cal and the plumber spent all of New Year’s Day digging out the sewer line. (Thank goodness for sewer insurance.) But I digress, back to this year’s fiasco.

I tried all the easy fixes: running the garbage disposal, etc. Nothing worked. I had two minutes before we had to leave for piano lessons. I did what comes naturally to any Dutch woman; I poured bleach down the sink. Bleach is a cure-all for anything offensive. No doubt it would banish all the heinous clogs. Of course, halfway to piano lessons I realized bleach and Drano don’t mix. Well, they do, but it’s a nasty, potentially lethal combination.

Luke and I tried snaking the lines through the line in the laundry room. But it was a huge waste of time. Eventually I took the sink drain pipes apart. Cal and I snaked the pipes—my wimpy muscles ache are now buffer. Snaking did nothing. Next we tried Drano. Still nothing. Next morning we called the plumber. He cleaned the pipes with super-deluxe-machine-driven-no-buff-muscles snake. It worked. Of course, then we found out that that they raised the price $35 since the last time they fixed our pipes. Cal said, “Huh, last time it was only $50.” The plumber said, “Yep, ever’thing’s gone up since last year.”

At this point, ever’thing would have been fine and dandy. Except one small slip of the memory. I forgot to replace the drainage pipe for the washer in the drain line. You can imagine what happened when the washer decided the wash cycle was over. Needless to say, my laundry room floor is now very clean after I mopped up gallons of soapy water.

I’d like to say this was the end of vacation preparation horrors, but stay tuned...


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Hi, Mom, I deleted "my" previous comment because Luke accidentally commented under my account. :( So that was NOT me... maybe Luke'll repost it under his own name...

  3. I accidentally commented as Ariel, that's the deleted comment. Anyway, I was the one who found out that Drano shouldn't be mixed with bleach, you asked for my chemistry expertise and I saw that the bottle said Drano shouldn't be mixed with other chemicals due to dangerous vapors and/or other hazards