The other day I found myself in the midst of a dilemma. It had been three and a half days since my last shower and I was good and ripe, but there was a problem. The problem was: our one and only shower was broken.
For those of you who don't know, the five of us live in a small house built in the 1930s with one, tiny bathroom. Now, to be clear, I love my house and the song 'Love Grows Best in Little Houses' is my theme song...BUT occasionally the one bathroom thing can be a problem.
Over the past couple of days, Andy had been trying to fix the stupid thing. He had gone from hardware store to hardware store looking for the right parts, but everywhere he went he heard the same things:
"They don't make parts like that anymore."
"I've never seen anything like that before."
"Are you sure this came from a shower? Looks like parts from a sink."
Apparently, our shower is so old and unique that it defies all categorization. Anyway, we tried to make the parts we had work by rigging them with other parts. No luck. We tried just, you know, pushing on it harder. That didn't work either. So we finally had to give in and call a plumber. He came, he saw, he laughed, and then said he could do the repair the next day.
So there I was, three and a half days without a shower and faced with one more. What should I do? I could make it one more day, I thought. But I had to go out in public a couple of times before the plumber returned and what if someone came up to me and tried to start up a conversation? I smelled like a pickle. No, going one more day was not an option.
The cold water part of the shower still worked (sort of) so technically I could take a freezing cold shower if I was desperate enough. But it's winter people! Sounds like a good way to catch pneumonia if you ask me. So no, that wasn't an option either.
I briefly considered hooking a garden hose up to the sink and running it into the tub but all the hoses are tucked away in the shed for the winter and it would take too long, so I finally decided there was only one thing left to do. The one thing that, in my life, is the step right before dialing up 9-1-1. I called Sarah.
Now Sarah lives across the street, is one of my very best friends, and is a beautiful, wonderful, amazing person. Unfortunately for her, I call her quite often when I find myself in these kinds of interesting dilemmas. Anyway, I explained the situation to her and asked her if pretty please I could maybe just run over super fast, while my daughter was taking a nap, and take a shower at her house.
"I'll be in and out in less than ten minutes," I assured her.
Ever the gracious and generous friend, Sarah was happy to oblige and the ten-minute shower took place. I emerged from her house a new woman with a fresh scent and fresh perspective on life, humming the words to 'Love Grows Best in Little Houses' to myself. So what if our house is small and old? I thought to myself. At least it's ours.
Then Andy called to let me know what the bid from the plumber had come in at.
"It's going to be a little over $500," he said.
Sigh. Did I mention how much I love my house?