Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! Restoration Underway.
Our last visit there, when we decided to buy the old house, there were 8-10 inches of snow on the ground. In Edenton, where they say it only snows every five years, it’s snowed three times since we first looked at the house, and that week was a doozy. This week we saw the first surprise. The snow and ice caused the three old cement steps on the front porch to crumble. Three new concrete steps weren’t in the budget plan, but, there you go. Surprise!
After we met with our restoration expert, Dawson, we learned the cabinetry in the kitchen, nice from a distance, wasn’t made of real wood. The finish was peeling off, hanging like Band-Aids on the doors. Dawson said the face of the cabinet really was wood, so he recommended new wooden doors. He’d have some for us to look at when we returned. We budgeted in new doors. We returned. He was surprised when he got into the cabinetry to discover poor construction and hap-hazard installation. We need new cabinets. Surprise! Ca-ching.
I discovered what I had thought was a utility closet next to the kitchen holding a fuse box, paint cans, and so much stuff I really hadn’t looked farther than the door, is a surprisingly deep and very utilitarian space that is unfinished. Imagine? 100 years unfinished? This is the most wonderful surprise! Here is that place that every homeowner dreams of. An unclaimed place full of deep shelves to hold crock pots, baking dishes, trays, platters that get used once a year, and all those flower vases we can’t part with. What a great surprise this is. It even has a light! Dawson will finish it to my specs. What I thought was a really little house is turning out to have amazing space.
Dawson’s electrical guys will begin today to remove the nob and tube wiring and rewiring to bring it up to code and safety standards. I do love the old brass plates, though; the little pushbuttons with the mother-of-pearl tops. I hate to replace those with beige plastic; loses some of the elegance. But ever since he explained the chaotic wiring affair to me, I’ve listened all night for the firetrucks zooming down East Queen Street! It hasn’t burned down yet. Happy surprise.
The place is growing on me. I think I like it! Surprise, surprise, surprise. Dave knows me better than I know myself, apparently. I’m a writer; I love a happy surprise ending.