On the Home Front

We finally have heat!

That’s only a slight exaggeration.  Our living room has one small radiator. It’s just not enough to keep the winter cold at bay.  This was the SECOND winter without enough heat in this room and I was REALLY fed up with that!  Our fireplace didn’t work correctly.  First it leaked smoke upstairs, then we thought that was fixed, but it wasn’t.  It wouldn’t work at all and only filled the living room with smoke.  Not good.

Then we hired an expert to rebuild the fireplace into a built-in wood burner with a glass front and new pipe up the chimney.  He was doing a great job, until he fell off our roof and broke his hip.  He was lucky he didn’t break his head into little pieces.

I just happened to be home the day he was working on the final part of the job – putting the new pipe down the chimney.  He was up on the peak of the roof (4 stories up).  I was in the attic working on the computer.  I heard a big thump thump bang clang coming down the roof.  I thought he dropped a tool.  I thought I’d better go make sure everything was ok.  I got half way down the stairs when I heard him outside the front of the house moaning.  OMG.

Do you know the emergency number to call in the Netherlands?  I grew up knowing 911.  Luckily I remembered that here it is 112.  I sat with him and told him everything would be ok and made sure he didn’t move (he kept trying to move) until the ambulance got here.  It was the longest 4 minutes ever.

They strapped him onto a gurney and took him away.  He could just talk a little but was in a lot of pain.  Like I said, he was lucky to have only broken his hip.  We have only bricks in the front of our house, which is what he landed on.

Later that day his parents came by to tell us how he was and that he would be out of commission for a couple of months at least.  One week later his dad and another guy came to our house and finished the work.  We now have a working wood burner, a warm living room, and a memory of a traumatic day.

Bas, the old cat, has discovered the new fireplace.  He figured this out right away and proceeded to take over the warmest place in the house.  Everything for Bas.

Now that Spring is around the corner we have heat in the living room.  We’ll wait until the summer to buy a load of wood to take us through next winter.   I don’t think I will dread it so much now.

One thought on “On the Home Front

  1. ginni March 7, 2011 / 11:33

    This looks fabulous! Glad to hear that the work was completed after the drama. Fun to read your blog. I miss you and hope to see you tonight!

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