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Reboot? - Karen's Musings
Random Rambling
You know, I think I can just give up on March right now.  Let's review:

March 1:  Ellie gets admitted to hospital.  Diagnosed with Reactive Airway disease.
March 2:  Ellie spends the entire day in the hospital and is eventually released (admittedly this is a bonus).  That night is not a great night.
March 3:  I get rear ended.  My husband's car breaks down in B'more.
March 4:  Abby gets really sick.  Like, I almost took HER to the emergency room kind of sick. 
March 5:  Abby still sick.  Ellie still getting nebulizer treatments.  But at least I'm back from work.
March 6: Hallelujah!  Ellie's back to normal.  Abby's on the mend.  I'm totally exhausted, but no one is in crisis.
March 7:  Lovely day, guests for lunch, fun walk with the triplets in the afternoon.  All good.
March 8:  All hell broke lose in the morning.  I did not handle it well.  The afternoon redeemed itself.

Which brings us to yesterday.

We knew we had a plumbing issue because the last quarter of 2008 our water bill was near $700 (our normal quarterly water bill is ~$130).   Our sump pump has been running regularly, which it has never done in the 4 1/2 years we have lived in our house.  Never.  Not once.  Not even in torrential downpour that has flooded all the other neighborhood basemements.    We had our handyman out to check to see if there was a problem inside the house.  Nope.  No problem.  He shut off all the water and noticed that he could still hear water coming in the pipe into the house.  He walked around the house and found that, in fact, there was a soggy ground all around the side of our house, despite there having been no rain or snow in the several weeks prior.  He postulated that the pipe between the water meter and the house was broken.  But he doesn't fix that kind of problem.  The last time he knew someone with that kind of problem it was 5 or 6 years ago and it cost about $3K to fix.  Crap.

We had our water company come back out to confirm that there really was a problem.  Yes, Houston, we had a problem.  We are using a thousand gallons of water a day.  Clearly, there's a major leak somewhere.  65 feet of pipe where that leak could have happened.  Now we needed to find a master plumber.  That's where yesterday comes in.

We had two plumbers come out yesterday.  The first quote came in at $6500.  It would involve digging a 65 foot trench, 43 inches deep, and replacing the pipe, having it inspected, all the permits, closing up the trench, etc.  *gasp*  He could start Monday.    The second quote came in at $5850.  They have a different way of doing things...  they'll go through the masonry inside the house, and dig underground with an air piston for 62 feet and only dig for the last 3 feet to the meter.  This involves less damage to my yard, which is good since we spent a considerable amount of money regrading the yard and redoing the landscaping last Spring.  And of course, none of these costs cover the cost of redoing any of our landscaping after they destroy it.    They could start the next day (today, Tuesday).    We signed the contract and hired them.  Six thousand dollars.

Oh.  My.  Gawd.
18 comments or Leave a comment
lizziebennet From: lizziebennet Date: March 10th, 2009 03:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
My parents had this problem last year. Being my parents (and having only one person working full time, and no young children), they researched the options thoroughly, while keeping the water shut off at the meter except to take showers. It really does cost that much. Then they dug a trench themselves—apparently this saved money. For just about anyone else (not even considering people with *triplets* plus another child, and two full time jobs)—not so practical! It took a long time!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: March 10th, 2009 06:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
we definitely cannot dig this trench ourselves. I don't think even if we wanted to we could. So we'll be forking over a massive amount of money very shortly. Sigh.
lizziebennet From: lizziebennet Date: March 10th, 2009 06:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
lol obviously you cannot!! I really didn't mean to say you could! My parents had a totally different situation, which made it even theoretically possible, and are a little crazy anyway--it really wasn't a sane thing to do in the circumstances. :)

Sigh. It's a really annoying problem!
eyelid From: eyelid Date: March 10th, 2009 05:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
omfg. !! ...and I thought our refrigerator breaking was a pain. My sympathies!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: March 10th, 2009 06:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah. This? This is not fun. It has not been a good week. I don't think I've got you on my face book (feel free to friend me - Karen Snell Cohen), but if you'd seen my status updates in the last month or so... good heavens, it's like a dark cloud has been hanging over me!
journeytoernie From: journeytoernie Date: March 10th, 2009 05:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
WOW! a thousand gallons a day!? oy! how does something like that even happen!? your house isn't that old!!!

:/ maybe april will be better?
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: March 10th, 2009 06:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
My house is over 70 years old. The underground pipes are at least 50 years old. That's a long time for pipes to be hanging out 4 feet under ground.

It's a long time until April for me to wait for things to get better.
journeytoernie From: journeytoernie Date: March 10th, 2009 06:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
REALLY? for some reason i thought your house was made in the 60's or 70's. huh.

april isn't so far! 2 weeks!

go watch follow that bird. the "aint no mountain you can't climb" song will make you feel better.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: March 10th, 2009 06:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
It was built in 1937.

there are 21 more days of March left. That's 3 weeks. If I have to go through 21 more days like the last 10 days? I won't make it.
journeytoernie From: journeytoernie Date: March 10th, 2009 06:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
huh! i guess i was thinking of someone else or something!

hopefully it wont be a full 21 days left.

and i dont want to say anything or jinx you...but maybe that's it for house issues? i mean only one thing at a time usually happens right?
real_bethy From: real_bethy Date: March 10th, 2009 07:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
Good grief! This just hasn't been your month!

I'm sending you good thoughts - which, I know, are not as good as money, but hopefully they are almost as helpful.

Here's hoping that April is a month of awesome for you!
malkaesther From: malkaesther Date: March 11th, 2009 12:29 am (UTC) (Link)
Ouch. May the rest of the month be full of only good things.
zis770 From: zis770 Date: March 11th, 2009 12:39 am (UTC) (Link)

Amen. Hello, Adar is supposed to be a month for happy things to happen! May all the annoyance do a hapach hu into revealed good!

magid From: magid Date: March 11th, 2009 02:04 am (UTC) (Link)
Another person hoping Purim is the time for nehefoch hu, and all will be turned upside down, in good ways, of course.
From: atimesif Date: March 12th, 2009 11:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oy vey! I just read through your last few posts. What a nightmare. I hope everyone starts to feel better real soon. A lot of times breathing issues come up when the seasons change. I hope they gave you a nebulizer for the house and you're not shlepping to the doctor for each treatment. And good luck with your forced 'construction'. I hope they do a good job and that this is the last of your homeowner expenses for a good long time. I hate when these things happen. As though life is not stressful enough!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: March 12th, 2009 11:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
They did get me my own nebulizer through my insurance, so it's mine to keep.

The construction is done - they did a great job. I suppose that's something.
yeishlitikvah From: yeishlitikvah Date: March 13th, 2009 06:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
HUGs I trully can understand and relate. I currently have a basement full of raw sewage.

I have paid for plumbers I think three times in the past two weeks. Once wednesday and one thursday. Only to be told the back up will keep happening until we replace teh sewer line. which gasp is around your plumbing chaos.

I'm glad the munchkins are feeling better.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: March 13th, 2009 07:03 pm (UTC) (Link)

Replacing sewer lines is almost double what replacing our measley little pipe cost! (at least in a house like ours).

My sympathies!
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