Monday, September 14, 2015

Manual Labor and a Feeling of Accomplishment

My  parents are renovating their house, starting with the garage and entire exterior. As part of the garage renovations, I was enlisted to come home for a weekend and assist in cleaning out the garage.

Seems like a doable task. Clean out some bikes and some yard tools, etc.

So not the case.

We moved into this house 20 years ago. It is crazy what a family of three can accumulate in 20 years. And then you realize that my family is not the typical family and that we accumulate more like 8 pack-rat's worth of stuff. Geez.

Every single space in the garage was used up. Every usable inch was covered in shelves and boxes and everything imaginable. Between the wall beams, in the ceiling rafters, in boxes, in drawers, in cupboards, on shelves. E-V-E-R-Y-W-H-E-R-E. It took two days to empty and clean the garage and get it ready for the new walls and ceiling and organization system.

Of the items in the garage we FILLED the giant garbage with a lot. I was actually pretty impressed with what my dad was willing to part with! Then we filled a big pod with more stuff. And we moved things to the porch. AND a few things were left in the garage (i.e. 3 bikes).

When you look at what went in the big plus the trailer and the porch, I still am in awe that all of THAT fit in the garage. AND they still had room for two cars (it's a 2 car garage BTW).

It was pretty rewarding work. Painful and gross and my allergies are a disaster from being outside and all that dust ... but still rewarding. After working week after week, month after month in a job where sometimes it doesn't feel like I'm moving forward at all, it was nice to just do something where there was a clear start and end and it was very obvious when things were done.

But it was gross. So gross. Since the garage wasn't insulated and finished, little critters and lots of dirt collected. For 20 years. 20. Years. I cannot even begin to explain that amount of dust and stuff (gross stuff) that collected behind all stuff that was collected in there.

But now it's gonna look all fancy and clean and with its fancy walls (!) and ceiling (!) and storage systems. And I have been contracted to return to the garage when it's time to put all the stuff back so I can put my mad organization skills to good use.


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