Friday was a day past my personal goal to finish the paint job around the corner. A midway color change on the windows had added to the job. The touch ups were never ceasing, the cleanup endless. But I was going to finish Friday, by doggone. By myself too, because I was all payrolled out.
An early morning going-over with the homeowners informed me of one misunderstanding. I was supposed to clean all the gutters too. Ouch. Of all the ladders moves we’ve made around the house, I’d need to do it again. Plus touchups on the three colors and 28 windows with brown sashes inside white trim (yeah).
And thus, I called my forces. And then I started hurrying. And then I started really hurrying. And before the sun was even over the trees, I crashed a ladder through a glass door.
A certain corner has been a difficult area, due to both an untamed crate myrtle (winning the battle over a bungee corded belt) and a deteriorated concrete stoop which leaves no good place to set a ladder. Since I was in a hurry, and since the 16 was in arms length, I placed it over the steps from the stoop and up to the house. Over the old glass door. Maybe I should have grabbed a smaller ladder and worked something out with the pivot on the steps… But I just needed to touch one thing.
When I reached the third rung, the ladder slipped its footing behind me and I dropped into the glass. I rode all the way to the bottom of the pane, burning two ladder rips through the screen door on the outside and the blinds on the inside. I was still frozen to the ladder when it stopped. Glass had filled the enclosed porch. White paint splashed on the house. Among other things, I would need to touch that up. Miraculously I was unhurt.
Fortunately I’ve recently worked with a guy that does window restoration. For the rest of the day, the 100 year old door was on sawhorses in the front yard and I gave it a new pane of glass, meaning I had to get it cut, plus make a run to the store (run #437). The screen got a new screen and I even sprung for a new vinyl blind. At perhaps 3:00 PM I resumed painting the house, having done some nice work on the doors to make the afternoon very satisfying (please note sarcasm).
The homeowner asked me later, “Is this your first time to fall off a ladder?”
I told him, “I’ve still never fallen off a ladder.” Because I rode the ladder, or you could say I fell on the ladder. But no, we don’t fall off ladders.
At 7:00 the last touch ups were finished and the deal done. I ran home to be off on Ashley and my date downtown during First Friday. In the mailbox was my contractors license from the state of Tennessee. I have been checking for it everyday, of all days.
For what it’s worth, and perhaps it could be the paper on which it is printed, I can call myself a contractor. If that takes a “can do” attitude and a “get it done” mentality, then I’ve got at least that much. Of course I fell through a glass door, scrubbed gutters for goodwill, and didn’t get the bid for the job I was trying to start Monday. But that’s just construction. It reminds me to keep my day job which is writing obscure music for my friends.
Come back for some proper before and after pictures of the house.