02 May 2009

A Father - Daughter (Mostly Daughter) Project

"Danie you are the only person I know who travels around the world with just a backpack."

If you ever wonder where I get my sense of exaggeration from, I'll introduce you to my dad. He's the one who picked me up after my awesome flight back east last weekend. I did travel across the country with just a backpack though, and I was pleased with myself for that. My dad and I went to Long Island, where his girlfriend (Deva) lives. She's what I call "very pregnant," meaning she's due in less than a month and could pop at any time. As we were driving, I asked my dad how we were going to spend our day. He had no idea. He first proposed I busy myself, while he prepared the baby's room. I reminded him I watch a lot of home improvement shows, and that love projects. I enlisted in "Operation Baby Prep" and my dad and I formed a plan.

The first part of the plan was a list of things I could not say to Deva. Things like "woah you guys are really behind on this room" and "why don't you have this done already?" Were very high on the list. My dad said Deva was starting to stress. And has he told me what needed to be done, I got a little stressed too. The baby's room was not prepared because it was occupied by Deva's daughter, Neesha. Neesha was supposed to move into the basement. But the basement was full of renovation equipment, because the laundry room had just been re-done. One week before the shower and three weeks before my brother's scheduled arrival, he and his belongings had nowhere to live. This is a major difference between my dad and myself. I believe in preparation. He prefers chaos. Neither of us can change the other, because in the end, both of our methods work.

My dad & Deva work nights. So they stay up until about the time I get up for work. That means they sleep until at least brunch time. Work started after 11 on Saturday morning. In order to have a room for my incoming brother, I had to start in the basement. My dad busied himself with some mysterious "hose issue" in the laundry room and Neesha and I got to work.

Step one: cleaning the basement and organizing the equipment that had to stay down there. We cleared the wood part of the floor and designated that the "living space." There is a part just outside the laundry room that still needs tile. I cleaned the windows, and swept and mopped the floor. Neesha was off bringing a boy over to help. She's 19 and boys are very important.

Neesha & the boy returned, and I set them to emptying her bedroom. Oh, I forgot to mention the room was pink. It was a very girly, very pronounced, pink. Some people may be okay with putting a little boy in a pink room. Those people are not my father. Neesha and Brian The Boy emptied the room, then both left for work. He and I had to dismantle some of her furniture to get it down stairs, and suddenly I was left all alone to put it back together. My father (hours after this all started) was either at Home Depot or somewhere sawing a piece of pipe. He reappeared with some primer, tape, and tips for how I should prime the pink room.

He promptly disappeared and promised to fill in the blanks after I did all the edges. Three or so hours later the room was primed and my dad had not appeared. I passed the time listening to Wicked, Flogging Molly, and other inspirational tunes. I did a fine job and was quite pleased with my work. My dad (The Not-So-Great-Houdini) said my brother will love me.

Once the room was done, it was time to clean. My dad helped me reassemble the bed (once the "hose issue" was finished) and put the box spring and mattress in place. I cleaned the priming equipment. My dad organized the building equipment. I tidied the rooms that got trashed in the process and at the end of the day my brother's room was ready to be blue. It was 9PM.

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