Second entry, part 2: The floor, the floor

A brief interlude before we continue, if you’ll permit me: Here’s someone that could use your prayers. G-man, know that you’ve got mine.

                        It looks nice, but don’t be fooled… that flooring is tough to put in.

So we were driving to Don’s place earlier today, and Mom- at least, I think it was Mom- noticed someone on the road following us. “Is that Jim?” she asks.

We turn as one (except Dad, who’s driving) to look and see who it is.Sure enough, it’s him- we wave for a bit, but not getting a response,we ceased.

Dad wasn’t entirely sure (he’d looked it up, but had never driven there) about how to get to Don’s, so he slowed to let Jim pass us.

So we got there, and Dad and Jim had their guffaws about seeing each other on the road. Jim’s quip was: “That can’t be Gene, he’s driving like an old lady!”

We went inside, and descended in chaos.

We knew coming in that seeing Don and his wife Sandi would be tricky,as he was already hosting his son and their family of four this week.As it turns out, there was at least four more people in the house when we arrived- whether they were staying, or just visiting, I couldn’t say.

After exchanging hugs and greetings with Don, we walked inside,whereupon a lens fell out of my glasses. Cursing my timing, I immediately took them off, and picked up the lens before it could be crushed under the mass of people coming and going.

Don’s a very jovial and outgoing sort, with a lot of ideas that he’ll share with you, given the slightest opening. For whatever reason, I think of Steven Page of the Barenaked Ladies whenever I see him, and I can’t really explain why.

After a hurried greeting with Don’s wife Sandi, who’s in a wheelchair,Don quickly located a small set of screwdrivers to fix my glasses. I exchanged more greetings with people whose names I attempted to place with their faces before I’d forget, and, sure enough, immediately forgot. Once that was done, we went downstairs to start on the subfloor.

Don was renovating his basement, as they’re going to rent it out at the beginning of February. So on top of the concrete floor that was there,they were in the process of putting down 1/4 inch insulation, particle board, and vapor barrier, before laying down the laminate flooring. Our goal for the day was to get the subfloor stuff done,

After getting us started, Don had to take his wife to an appointment,so he left Dad, Jim, Dennis and I to continue with the floor. As Dad was the only one who seemed to know what he was doing, it meant there was some downtime for the rest of us.

We had lunch at a small fish and chips/donair place just up the road from Don’s house. Dennis and Dad had the ‘biggest donairs ever’, while Jim and I both opted for a two piece fish and chips. I think one would have done it, and the batter was too big, but it was pretty good. I’d probably have the donair next time, though, just to try it.

Getting back we finished the subfloor, though we almost ran out of particle board. We had to nickel and dime the corner, which was fine,since the part we got was under a sink and not likely to get much traffic.

We got the subfloor done, and moved onto what Dad eventually termed the ‘worst laminate flooring ever’. With the struggles we had piecing it together, I would agree with him.

Don returned in the middle of the afternoon, and we managed to continue the flooring into the kitchenette area. Dad continued to thank us for coming out today, and even with the dead air, it was good to see Don and Jim, and catch up with them a little while we worked.

Later on, brother Bob came by to take a look at the thermostats. There was a discussion with Sandi about placement (who wanted the thermostats lower, so she could reach them from her wheelchair), and after what seemed an indeterminate period of waiting, Bob took us to his place for dinner.

We met Mom and Bob’s wife Faye there, and though I came in feeling exhausted, and ready to konk out on the nearest couch, I came out refreshed, having enjoyed the visit much more than I thought I would.Meatballs, rice, and mixed vegetables- I thought I’d recognized the sauce from somewhere, and mentioned that. Turns out I didn’t (it’s nota brand carried out here), but meatballs and sauce is something we and Alex do from time to time.

Their teenaged daughter, Kazlyn, (not sure on spelling) arrived home from babysitting just in time for some pie, and afterwards, retired to her room. Though her mother occasionally wandered off to have a few words, I couldn’t really blame her for not ‘being social’, as Bob put it. When I was that age,the last thing I wanted to do was listen to Mom and Dad talk with people, while I sat around staring at whatever in the room I found interesting, and occasionally making forced conversation.

Tomorrow, we see Dad’s brother Roy for lunch, and Mom’s sister Rose for supper. That should complete the list of people we need to see while we’re here. I think.

EDIT: Gratuitous spell checking- thanks to Dennis for the eyes. Either I need a new spacebar, or Xanga’s formatting is messed. Some of it cut and pasted from a text file, but I can’t explain the rest.