Sunday, November 21, 2010

Rebuilding bathroom and life

11/21/10 Sunday
Church was good. But it’s always good to go to church. We were busy Saturday working on the bathroom. That tub ended up being one of those old cast iron ones and, man, was it heavy. We had torn out the rest of the wall, except a small part where the toilet is sitting, and cut out the two by fours that won’t be needed. This exposed the end of the tub and revealed it was cast iron. Ricardo went and gave it a big yank and it didn’t budge. We went outside and found a five foot long steel bar I had to use to pry the tub up. We pried and pried but that bad boy wasn’t coming up. I went out and got my big hydraulic car jack. It’s rated for five tons so there’s no doubt it can move this tub. It moved it for sure but there was still something holding it where we couldn’t pull the whole tub out. It was the drain so I had to crawl under the house and figure it out.

Crawling under the house isn’t easy. The hatch is only thirteen inches by sixteen inches long, if long is the right word. Thank God I live and work on this farm for I sure have lost weight and am more trim than I was when we moved here. Despite that it was a squeeze getting into the crawl space and once down it was still tight. Just rolling over was a chore as I worked to get my shoulder past the floor joist. A big concern was that in order to crawl to where the tub drain was I had to go over the PVC pipes and because they weren’t flat on the ground there was the possibility that my two hundred plus pounds could break one. I had Ricardo run out and locate a piece of plywood I could lay on top of the pipes to spread out my weight. That worked. No broken pipes. So I unhooked the drain and thus freed the tub, more or less. In the end I had to punch out the drain using the five foot steel bar to free the tub. With great effort we both lifted one end of the tub and set it on end. Then we were able to get the two wheeled dolly under it and carefully maneuvered it out of the house. I’m guessing that bad boy weighed about three hundred pounds. It will become a planter now. Don’t know what I’ll grow in it but where it’s at is where it will stay. If I have to move it I’ll hook up chains to the tractor and drag it.

Looking at all the pipes and things it was clear that neither Ricardo nor I have the expertise to know what we needed to hook up the new tub or move the toilet. He knows a plumber who is a good Christian too so gave him a call. He will make time to come out and look at the situation Monday or Tuesday, and give us the advice we need. Meantime I’ll work on tearing out old floor and removing the drywall, much of which is trashed anyway. There’s a lot of water damage from the leaking pipes. Part of the floor is in bad shape but most of it is old wooden flooring and pretty tough, not as susceptible to water damage as plywood is. The toilet goes into an old cast iron fitting and that sucker is not moving anywhere. It goes straight into the ground and I’m sure runs out to the old cesspool.

I need to install cut off valves into the system so we can turn the water off. While under the house I examined where the water line comes in from the well. That doesn’t look very good. The line coming in is steel and highly rusted and was mated to PVC pipe. My grandfather did a lot of southern engineering when he rebuilt this house, that had burned down about sixty years ago, and added to it a couple of times. I’ll ask the plumber his opinion but right now am inclined to leave this alone. To replace it means to dig up the line where it comes into the house from the well, and that’s a lot of digging as it runs across the driveway from where the old well used to be. The present well is a half mile away on the far corner of our property. But progress is being made. Hallelujah! For now things are at a standstill till we have a better understanding of what needs to be done.

Today I seem to be unusually tired and physically weak. Don’t know why, just making note of it. I removed some two by fours we had bought to build the new wall with from Cherie’s truck and had a hard time lifting more than two at a time. I burned some weeds and did a little work outside after church, and it’s like I worked all day long. So I came and am laying down now, writing this so at least I’m not wasting any time. This evening there is an interfaith thanksgiving service at the Baptist church. I am conflicted about going for here I am sure to meet some of those who have treated us so badly in the past. If I go, will I be seen as a trouble maker? Will my very presence be seen as an offence? I don’t know, but am inclined to not let fear motivate my decision. If I go, I go to represent my church and to represent my God, who loves me no matter what I’ve done. Cherie has no interest in going and I completely understand that, so won’t encourage her to do so. She’s gone through enough without having once again to endure the cold rejection of hypocrites and be reminded of the stabbing pain gossip causes.

Someone thanked our pastor for taking in all those that they, at their church, didn’t want. I don’t know what church it was and it doesn’t matter. It saddened me greatly to hear this and it illustrates so well a cancer that infects churches throughout the world. And it’s nothing new. This was exactly what James was referring to when he wrote in James 2:2 Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. 3 If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand there" or "Sit on the floor by my feet," 4 have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? 5 Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? 6 But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? 7 Are they not the ones who are slandering the noble name of him to whom you belong? 8 If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, "Love your neighbor as yourself," you are doing right. 9 But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers.

How is it that those, who call themselves Christians, can so completely misunderstand the heart of God? Jesus himself set the example, showed us how to act, during His short time with us on earth. Mathew 9:9 As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector's booth. "Follow me," he told him, and Matthew got up and followed him. 10 While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew's house, many tax collectors and "sinners" came and ate with him and his disciples. 11 When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and 'sinners'?" 12 On hearing this, Jesus said, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."

Jesus loved the unlovable, cared for those not cared about by the world. It was the destitute, the downtrodden, the rejected, whom He reached out to. The ones He had the greatest problem with was the elite, those who thought so much of themselves and presumed to be religious, thinking they were loved of God and the rest were not. It was for them Jesus had the harshest words.


Gwynne said...

Good to see you making progress! Redoing old bathrooms is messy HARD work. I just had two old cast iron tubs hauled off on Saturday also...took three guys (and me) to move them. Your efforts will be rewarded though, especially for Cherie!

Bob said...

If you find any tubs with the claw feet on them, they're worth bucks to certain collectors.

Shower Enclosures Bronx said...

Good luck on the rebuild! And god bless!

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