Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Water & The Damage Done

Well, I decided to blow the dust off of my old blog and use it as a personal depository for writings and things that don't quite fit into my website at which focus more on art and creativity. This notion arose after a recent minor disaster I just went through, which if interested, you can read below...

I woke up at 4:00 am to what I thought was the sound of rain. I laid in bed listening to the watery splash of dripping for a few minutes thinking to myself "boy it sure is dumping out side" before before getting up to use the bathroom and grab a drink of water. My first thought as I stepped onto the floor and into cold water was that I had spilled the glass I had on the ground next to my bed. I quicky realized that there was way more water on the ground than a small glass would hold and that my laptop, which was also by my bed and on its side was sitting in about 2 inches of water. It was until I looked around that I realized my studio was flooded.

The very first thing I did was get my feet out of the water and unplug and pull the battery out of my laptop. Which is the lesson learned when I dumped coffee into a different laptop years ago.  Next, I quickly unplugged all the extension chords, chargers and all electronics that had been on the ground and getting wet. When I went into the bathroom where the dripping sound was coming from to find water coming up from the drain in the shower and pouring out from the overflowing shower stall and onto the bathroom floor and out the door and into my entire unit. One small section where I most of my musical stuff was still dry and spared but the rest of my studio was in several inches of water. I phoned my landlady who lives upstairs but she was sound asleep and did not answer. I decided that what I really needed to do now was get my stuff off the floor.

I put everything I could on whatever table and counter space that I had available and set up another fold up table outside where I could put more stuff that was on the floor. I took all the dirty clothes and towels that I had and used them to make a barrier at the bathroom door to help contain the water. All the boxes filled with my belongings that I had just moved from my previous art studio were soaked. All the artwork, paper and books that were under the bed and lying flat on the ground were saturated. It was a minor disaster. I kept telling myself "stay calm, its just stuff." I did my best to respond rather than react, and focused my thoughts on solving the problem and not losing my cool.

I propped up my laptop to help any water that may have gotten inside to drain out and I raised what I could off the floor.  I tried to reach Lehua, my landlady, again by phone and by knocking on her front door but there was still no answer. By this time the water had stopped coming out of the drain, so I started doing what I could to use a broom to sweep the water out my front door. This went on for a few hours. Amazingly for the amount of water that was on the floor my unit dried quickly. The weather outside did not look like rain was coming so all the stuff I moved outside was able to dry too. Unfortunately, it was obvious that quite a few books and artwork were ruined as well as the new flooring that was installed right before I moved in at the start of the year.

Lehua finally called me back and quickly came down stairs to see what was going on. She was not to happy with what she saw, but took immediate action and assured me that if my laptop was ruined it would be covered along with whatever other damage had occurred. I had backed up most of my files before my trip to California so that was some consolation. After a few more hours had passed, I put the battery in my laptop and powered it up with fingers crossed. The laptop booted up and seemed to be working fine, However the LCD screen now had visual water damage done and  the background pattern now had a new look to puddle look to it. But it fired up and was still working so I said out loud "Thank You!" I then did another back up to get what had not been backed up onto my external drives.

The rest of my day was spent moving things around and doing my best to get what I could dried out. The rest of my weekend was spent moving things around, drying things out and disinfecting everything with a bleach solution. I cant tell you how glad I am that it wasn't sewage coming up out of the drain. I did have another scare the next morning when my laptop would no longer take a charge and the battery level went down to 10%. I took it into the computer store here on Kauai that specializes in Apple product and was the power supply died. I was relived but they also told me the mother board is oxidized and could die at any time. So I have a new laptop in my shopping cart to ensure I don't add to any more of the down time I incurred this weekend.

The other bummer is that I realized late Saturday night as I was heading to bed that I missed getting my 750 words written thus ending a nearly 200 day writing streak. Not exactly how I planned to spend my weekend and I am a little behind schedule with my creative efforts and projects,  but I am truly grateful for all the things that went right and that this deluge happened while I was home and not a few days earlier when I was in California.

"It is what is, accepted it. You will control it or it will control you."


amystic said...

So sorry about your art, books, computer, etc. What a bummer!
Hope you will be able to salvage some things...I feel for ya!

Chongolio Randybain said...

Hey There Amystic thanks for the taking the time to comment. Fortunately the worst is behind me the damage wasnt as bad as it could of been and a new laptop is on the way. So I am doing OK!

Sue Cottle said...

Darn - I hope the landlady's insurance covers replacing all the flooring and stuff. I hope you're gonna invest in a few shelves now too, so there's not as much 'stuff' on the floor.

Have you found out why the water was backing up the shower drain? Does it not flow into the sewage pipes?

Yay - new lappy! I really need to back up mine onto the new harddrive hubby got me.


Sue Cottle said...

Darn - I hope they landlady's insurance covers the damage to all the floor coverings and your stuff. Do you know why the water was coming up out of the shower drain? She probably needs to get that checked out, or it's gonna happen again. Does your waste water not go into the sewer? That's lucky.

Hope you're going to get yourself some shelving to get things off the floor now!

Just as well you'd backed up your old lappy - yay - nice new one!

Hope the sorting is going well.


Chongolio Randybain said...

Hey Sue, the insurance only covers the building not the stuff inside but she has assured me that my damages will be covered one way or another.

Plumber couldn't find any problems. Fortunately, it wasn't sewage so it appear to have been a temp clog that was finally pushed through when enough pressure built up.

Yes excited about the laptop and I bought an auto back up device to go with it
, but just hope my workflow isn't completely disrupted.

Thanks again for the concern and comment Sue.

Allen Hoffman said...

"It is what is, accepted it. You will control it or it will control you." – That’s the attitude! Well, there are certain things that are out of our hand. The best thing we can do is to prepare the next time it occurs and have the clarity of mind to deal with the situation. And based on your blog, I think you dealt with the situation quite well. Just a little more prep and repairs and your house will be free from water damage! [Allen Hoffman]