A River Runs Through It

Avid readers will remember how the Puddin' and I overcame the odds and installed a dishwasher over the weekend before Thanksgiving. All in all, I was pretty pleased with our project. It only ran once (on Thanksgiving day) and it did just fine.

But as those days after Thanksgiving wore on, I started noticing little drops of water on the kitchen floor. I chalked it up to one of the dogs being a bit sloppy with the water bowl and went on my way. But this past Thursday, as the Puddin' walked into the house and to the kitchen we noticed those drops again, only they were getting bigger - more puddle in nature than just a drop or two. So I pushed my foot down with some force near one of these puddles and about a cup of water splushed out from the seams of the linoleum tile. Aw, crap.

So five minutes after walking in the door, the Puddin' was helping me pull the stove and dishwasher out of their spaces and peel up every tile on that side of the kitchen. We were on our hands and knees gingerly removing the tiles (did I mention this style of kitchen tile is discontinued so we'll need to reuse the ones we pulled up?) and finding a virtual lake of water over the sub floor.

Now for some background. The house I own used to belong to my parents and was one of their rental properties. Years ago, a not-so-smart tenant discovered that the ice maker hose was leaking and wrapped it in duct tape before putting the fridge back and ignoring it for months. When they moved out and my father pulled out the fridge, he discovered that the entire subfloor was ruined, the kitchen floor had warped and the foundation had to be jacked up. My brother and father replaced the entire subfloor and tile and my father crawled under the house to bleach the floor joists so that an inspector would not see the dark, water-stained wood and assume it was ruined. I still remember the blisters and red marks all over my father's arms from the bleach as he "painted" the under side of the floor with a brush. It was horrible.

So my house has had some issues with water. And then I discovered that the dishwasher has been leaking for over a week all over (and under) my kitchen floor. So I was getting a little emotional about the whole thing. I had been so proud of the Puddin' and I getting this project done and it was coming apart in my hands. So my lips started quivering and my eyes started welling up with tears. The Puddin' looked and me and said "No no no no. We're not gonna cry. Everything's okay. See, the floor's gonna be fine and we're gonna clean it up." You know that scene from Monsters, Inc. where Boo starts crying and all the lights start pulsing and Sully is trying to cheer her up by singing "ooh, I'm a happy bear" and doing anything he can to get her to calm down? That was the Puddin' and me in the kitchen. My kitchen depression only lasted a bit and we know the part to fix and can replace the tiles (which are all upside down and scattered across the dining room drying). So all is not lost.

Right about the time we finished setting up the fan to dry the subfloor, Mom called. I told her our latest activities and Dad said to save whatever tiles we could but he had found a box of that same style so we could replace it. The Puddin' and I headed off to get some dinner around the corner. As we left the restaurant. he asked me "um, do you have keys to the house?" You see, he'd left his keys at my place the week before and we'd fashioned him a temporary set (which didn't include a key to my place). I hadn't brought keys because he said he had keys and we were taking his truck. (My keys were under the fan in the kitchen anyways.) So we headed to Mom and Dad's to get a key to the house. As we're almost there, Rich asked me "did you bring the dog in?". Uh, I didn't know the dog was out. Apparently he had gone out in the initial hubbub over the floor. So we headed to my parents' house to get a key so we could get back in. As we got back in the house, I realized the back door was unlocked so we theoretically could have gotten in (another oops on our part) except that the fridge was pushed into the laundry room and in front of the back door. So I suppose that was acting like a pretty good "lock" afterall.