I painted a drawer front and a cabinet door last week. I painted them in our heated warehouse. I neatly wrapped my wet paint brushes in plastic and promptly forgot them when I left. I went back three days later and the paint brushes were perfectly preserved. The primer on the cabinet was too. It was perfectly preserved damp. It is not like waiting for paint to dry, it is waiting for paint to dry.
We brought the cabinet and the door and drawer fronts to the garage where we are staying. To be extra cautious I put down a canvas painting tarp and then used both cardboard and plastic to protect my paint area. I carefully sanded down my primer and had a second go at getting the paint to dry. It was relatively warm in the garage. I was painting in my shirtsleeves.
This morning I came down to find that the paint was not dry. The cabinet I am trying to paint is one made of wood and particle board that I found for $30 in the take-a-way bin at the lumber supply. I can pass off some of the problem as that. I bought two unfinished decorative legs to hold up a kitchen counter. Their primer dried and their paint dried but when I put a second coat even after leaving them overnight, even they globed up.
Paint does not dry at 40 degrees. I knew that but somehow I thought I would defy the laws of nature and my paint would dry. It is like that building a house in the winter. It feels like we are waiting for 2000 sq feet of paint to dry.
In reality, it is like a raceway at the house. We are back to the day-count for how long we have our current lodging before going to a hotel. We have 26 days. Our contractor and all of the subs are racing against our clock. When we are at the house I feel like I am ducking in every direction. Roof felt whizzes by here, plumbing pipes there, a ladder, a pneumatic hammer, people, dogs and all the trappings of a well-organized construction circus, er….site.
While it can feel like waiting for paint to dry, the house is coming along rapidly. We get roof felt this week; I think doors and windows too. The roofing has been ordered (deep burgundy metal with a tiny bit of dark green peeking out) and will be here soon.
The place reeks of plumbing solvents which is like smelling the most sublime roses to us right now. We have piles of plastic pipe in what will be our bedroom. There are holes drilled into the floor and places that were carefully built have been “un-built” to instal plumbing. I imagine the electrical will include some “unbiliding” too.
The initial electrical wiring will be done this week. We are putting regular plugs in the receptacles and we are adding some USB plugs. It will be interesting to see how long they are useful or if they will go the way of Betamax video.
I have written about the little basement apartment we are carving out for us to live in until the house is finished in the spring. When I first proposed it, and anxiously proffered the carefully worked out schematics, I commented, “It is about the size of a cruise ship cabin.” The name stuck. We all stand around saying things like, “This is for upstairs. Now, down in the cruise ship we will do it this way….” We have even gotten invoices marked for the cruise ship. Sometimes new people on site look a little confused until someone thinks to tell them that it is a metaphor, there really is not a cruise behind the garage. Every once in a while I swear I see someone go behind the house to double check.
My gut tells me this house won’t be finished until May but I do expect we can move into the cruise ship in the next 3-4 weeks. I don’t want to move in before it is really pretty ready since I don’t want to push my spouse who has a little less enthusiasm about building things than I do. I try to be sensitive to the hesitancy to live in the middle of this muddle. He has been a good sport about agreeing to move into a 400 sq ft basement apartment in the middle of an active building zone.
The joke (which he thinks is funny too) is that we will shove him down the mountain in the morning when the hammers start and he can come home at the end of the day. I will stay as I have tons of work to get done. I know when I read this blog to him in the morning that he will actually smile over this. We are trying to be indulgent with each other. I am making sure that the cruise ship is well appointed and he is making sure that he keeps his enthusiasm up for both of us.
In addition to my $30 kitchen cabinet and $25 cabinet legs i have been waiting to dry, I have two cheesy cardboard and particle board linguine chests for our tiny cruise ship bedroom. Of course, they came in a box so long before I get the painting I find I am in trouble. After 2 1/2 hours we don’t have even one chest yet. It took me 45 minutes to sort the screws and parts and over an hour and a half to assemble the drawers less the runners. I have not attempted the body yet since I don’t have room without bumping into wet paint. The chests are part of a big book/headboard bridge to build for over the bed. We have a 3 foot closets so we need some storage space. Tthe chests are waiting on me to build them as if they were waiting for wet paint to dry.
So, for now, I have grand plans for cabinets and headboards. I am waiting for the paint to dry. If it ever does get dry, and I can pull my plans off, it off it will really be nice. I have flapped my trap about what I am doing so I suppose everyone is expecting Da Vinci or Da Saster. Either way you cut it, I am still waiting for the paint to dry.