For several weeks now we've had a shower leak. It started as a drip, progressed to a trickle, became a stream and then the hot water ran full blast even if the faucet was turned totally off. With the emergency funds gone since Harold has been underemployed these last two years and my foray into trying to get a part time job having only put us further behind we have simply not had the funds to contact a plumber so we managed the problem by turning the hot water on and off at the valve at the water heater. Inconvenient to be sure but still not unmanageable. Until yesterday. When that valve also started to leak.
At that point I printed out our contract with American Home Shield and discovered that all this time we have had plumbing coverage and didn't know it. So today the plumber is here. He just went back outside to turn on the water and test the first fix as we speak. If all goes as planned, I will have hot water that doesn't require a trip to the garage by the end of this visit. Hopefully I will not also have a chunk of my shower that needs to be retiled.
Still, this whole mess has made me acutely aware of the incredible luxury that is hot water and how much we take such things for granted.
I find myself thinking today of my friends Hugh Hollowell and Peter Gathje who run Love Wins Ministries in Raleigh, NC and Manna House Memphis respectively and also of my friend Bec Cranford-Smith who serves as the Director of Community Relations and Volunteer Services at the Gateway Center in Atlanta. These three folks are doing good work among our neighbors who live outdoors AKA "the homeless". One of the things that both Manna House and the Gateway Center (and I imagine Love Wins may as well) provide to our neighbors who sleep outdoors is a place to come and shower and do laundry. A couple of things I also take for granted.
Sadly I am still without the ability to have hot water conveniently. The valve on the water heater is fixed but the valve in the shower/tub is FUBAR. AHS will not cover it as apparently it isn't due to normal wear and tear AND in order to actually replace the valve we have to remove a section of my six year old kitchen cabinets. I could cry. $400 for the plumbing part of the fix and still contacting contractors for estimates to get us access to DO said fix. Accepting recommendations.
Still. First World Problems.
Until tomorrow. Peace.
PS. GET THE HECK OUT THERE AND VOTE TOMORROW IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY!