Saturday, October 17, 2009

Basement Woes

If you read my blog then you have probably heard me complain about the basement! We had record precipitation this year and all spring the basement was continually flooding. Even the sump-pump and the shop vac. couldn't keep up with it! Eventually things dried out, but the damage was done.

We tried treating the mold with a bleach and water solution, which would seem to help, but the mold would always rebound. Eventually, even though the basement was dry, it was spreading to new surfaces! After finally facing the facts we are in the process of demo-ing out most of the basement.

Ross has been working on it a couple of hours here and there all month long, and he's my hero for doing it, but this has meant no heat! We didn't want to risk turning on the furnace and spreading nasty mold spores all through the house. Luckily he tells me that he is just about finished removing every mold tainted surface and we should have heat by Monday. Thank God!

For your viewing pleasure:

Friday, October 02, 2009

Why Don't They Like Us?

I was stunned to turn on the TV this morning and learn that Chicago's bid was the first to be eliminated in the voting for the 2016 host city. All week the rumor had been that the real contest was between Rio and Chicago, with Tokyo in dead last, so when Chicago dropped out I said, stunning. It continues to amaze me how overlooked Chicago is. When we were in Las Vegas we met two separate couples from the UK who, in addition to Las Vegas, were going to be spending part of their American vacation in L.A. I felt sorry for them! How weird is it that L.A. and Las Vegas are the cities that represent the U.S. to so many visitors? Honestly, of all the cities I've seen in this country, none has the natural beauty combined with the architectural magnificence (not to mentioned the richness of culture and history) of Chicago. I know I may be biased, but I think it is America's finest city.

And yet, poor Chicago, it is much maligned! I had a Spanish teacher in high school who said that when she told Europeans she was from Chicago they would invariably reply with either "Al Capone!" or "Bang, bang!" On our visit to South Carolina this summer a relative said about me "Well, I guess they can't say nothing good ever came out of Chicago." Um, thank you? I hoped that the Olympics would let the world see just what a great city we have, but I guess for the time being Chicago's greatness will continue to be our little secret.