PATRICK HELP ME !!!
PLEASE !!! HELP !!! HELP !!!
such a beautiful scene above.
it’s also a house painter’s nightmare.
there’s a story here. and a reason for this picture.
and i’ll tell you in a minute.
i’m thinking it might turn out to be too long.
you know only too well how my stories are sometimes.
so you can just quit reading any time old bean.
I WILL TOTALLY UNDERSTAND AND NOT BE HURT !!!
some tools of the trade are pictured below.
i learned to use them well.
that . . .
and the three inch brush for ‘cutting in’
the brush that filled my entire hand. you do NOT use a small brush.
and it was the hardest thing i had to learn how to use.
that and wielding a 12 foot ladder around.
but learn i did! and i loved it!
meaning getting a CLEAN razor sharp line of paint on an edge
where ceiling and wall meet. or wall and baseboard.
or where shelves meet the wall.
how to get JUST the right amount on a roller.
making it easier to blend . . .
so that there are no lines left on the wall.
it’s a skill.
and it meant
working SO HARD all day long
that i didn’t have time to think. to cry. to do anything but
i would come home exhausted. but it was not the empty
exhaustion of grief and loss and mental fog.
i would take a shower and shampoo my hair and eat.
and i felt rested somehow.
but i was young.
it was long ago.
FLASH BACK FIRST
bob died in early july of 1979.
almost immediately after he died
i worked as a secretary
in a huge corporation
rich with thickly carpeted offices.
in the middle of the oil boom then.
the corporation was called
technical oil tools corporate operations
a subsidiary of
i worked there for only 6 months.
my young boss was so uptight about
in his life . . . home problems . . . as well as work problems
that the tension there everyday could be cut with a knife.
i did feel sorry for him. i think he was going through a divorce.
i was a young newly widowed know~nothing back in the work force.
and smack in the middle of my own personal grief.
grief that i was keeping hidden.
because i wanted to be PROFESSIONAL.
i was sorry for him
but i had little energy left for his unprofessional problems.
i was exhausted
emotionally and physically and running on empty.
being around him and being his
was the last straw on my feebly constructed house of straw.
one day i turned in my two weeks notice and left
FOR ONE GLORIOUS WEEK
in the grand bahamas.
the bahama princess hotel right on the beach.
it was the first vacation i’d had in years.
the only thing missing was my beloved bob.
but it was beautiful.
i just rested. soaked up sun. played in the surf.
i did some soul searching there in the bahamas.
but even then . . . it took another 6 months to realize
i needed to do something else . . . or thought i did then anyway . . .
with my life.
my goodness. i guess i had become a job hopper!
that first year after losing bob . . . i just wasn’t settled.
the next 6 months were spent working at the university.
here. the magnificent gothic bizzell library.
i loved my job at the bizzell system of libraries at the university!
you know that old bean.
i did a post about it.
in the short 6 months there . . .
it’s in the side bar
named ‘ my bad ‘
but . . . here’s the thing . . .
i just needed to feel free of mind problems. i can’t explain it actually.
i had a longing to not think. i needed awhile where i didn’t think.
that sounds terrible to admit here.
because most of my followers on the peanut are DEEP thinkers!
but it was true about me then.
and yet i knew i had to earn a living.
and i’ve never been afraid of hard work.
once again i gave my two weeks notice to the library.
a friend of mine introduced me to a house painter
an adventure of well over a year in my life most unusual began!
uh oh. what a sentence. LOLOL.
but alas alack and as it were . . . true.
i had grown up helping my mother paint our rental houses.
not the outside. but the inside.
so fresh so clean.
i loved everything about it!
the wonderful smell of the paint making everything new.
when i somehow talked patrick into hiring me . . .
i apprenticed to become a professional painter.
and i spent the next year of my career life . . .
doing just that!
painting i mean! LOL
painting apartments. painting houses inside and out.
painting two stories with ladders within 2 feet of the pool’s edge.
i was the only woman that i knew doing that in that ‘ man’s world ‘.
at least in those days i was here. surely there are many others now.
i was never treated with anything but respect.
maybe good natured laughter at first yes. . . . but later
when i had learned my trade . . . respect.
i worked for patrick for the better part of that year.
i even made it past the 6 month mark!
he worked for himself and just used a helper.
i was that helper.
my mistake later was thinking i could leave him and work for
i had a little white mazda pickup… my own ladders…
i even had a special dolly that i could roll the
extremely heavy 5 gallon plastic buckets of paint around on . . .
so i didn’t have to ask for help from anybody.
you have to be able to carry your own weight.
speaking of weight.
i weighed 105 pounds.
and about 50 pounds of that was hair.
here’s what i looked like in those house painting days.
regular peanut readers have seen it before.
it’s in a sort of autobiographical post on the side bar over there.
naturally wavy hair like a country western singer
and as thick as mud . . . and the color of mud too!
yes. i know.
why on earth wasn’t i wearing a hair cut like i wear now?
i just crammed it all up underneath a ball cap every single day.
that adorable boy is jacob and blake’s daddy.
master sgt mike. my marine’s son. and my nephew.
he’s six feet tall now.
let’s you know how long ago it all was.
patrick was very patient with me.
once he left me alone in a very large very expensive empty house.
i was told to have it completed by the end of the day
while he worked in another part of the city.
we started at 5 a.m.
i worked all day. i took a peanut butter jelly sandwich for lunch.
and a thermos of water.
i left for home finally at 7 pm that night bone weary and sore.
it was on a friday.
he informed me on the following monday morning
that he had to re~do the entire house over the weekend.
i had not used enough paint on my roller. it dried with lines.
a hard lesson indeed.
see the picture at the beginning of the post?
it truly IS lovely. but no doubt why i don’t particularly like
ROSES and THEIR THORNS!!!
these pictures of course are not the real house in the first of the post
or the little out building as the one above . . .
but they are uncannily similar.
patrick worked on the front of the big house.
my job was the little outbuilding
covered with climbing rose bushes.
and with other shrubbery all around.
instructions from the owner were adamant.
” BE ESPECIALLY CAREFUL OF MY ROSES !!! “
you couldn’t see it.
but at the back of that little house . . .
she had used barbed wire to hold up one of the vines.
BARBED WIRE !!!
and RUSTED barbed wire at that!
why on earth would somebody string that kind of wire
to hold up climbing roses.
roses have thorns enough themselves!!!
this is WAYYYY too long already.
so let’s just end this sad tale.
1. tammy sets up her ladder on the side of building. it’s taller than the one in the picture. she has to be careful not to harm the bushes below . . . she has to duck between the wire and the roses.
2. she is wearing a white short sleeved t-shirt. two places on her arm are already bleeding from the thorns. she somehow manages to get entwined in the barbed wire reaching for the eves. and . . . WHAT???? YES!!! lo and behold!!! a lovely WASP’S nest right up under the eave. and not an old nest either. ZZZZZZ ZZZZZ
3. OH LORDY!!!! OH NO! wasps wire thorns high on a tipping ladder a can of paint . . . ALL are terrible combinations for disaster.
4. HELP! PATRICK!!! HELP!!! PLEASE HELP HELP!!! can he hear me? he’s all the way up front!
5. he hears me. he arrives. he does not laugh. he makes his way through the roses. he removes the paint can. CUSTOMER CARES first. of course. the wasps are swarming. i’m not bitten yet. but the thorns and barbed wire are working me over. every way i move i’m constricted by the wire that has twisted all through my shirt.
6. he says BE STILL. 0@#$%! yes. he used very colorful language. at me? at the wasps? the wire? the roses? nope. we ALL know. probably ME.
7. i hear a ripping sound. he’s literally tearing the shirt off my back. the only way to untangle me. he then grips me around the waist with one strong arm while holding the wire over my head with his other arm. with one swift turn he gets us both free without even getting a scratch on him.
8. i am now standing there for all to see . . . half naked and bleeding and needing a tetanus shot.
i lost my shirt in another way too old bean.
by the end of that year and into the new one . . . i weighed 89 pounds.
i wound up in the hospital.
i had tried to bid my own jobs.
i lost money on every one of them.
a silly little girl thinking she knew how to do it all.
i collapsed on a job site one day and had to go to the hospital.
i hadn’t been eating apparently. food costs money!
and i was just working very very hard.
not a combination for good health.
BUT . . .
it had a happy ending old bean!
after a very rough spell i’ve already told you about . . .
i got my wonderful job at the big hotel and conference center.
that was super fun. and i dearly loved the people i worked with.
i tell you what old bean . . .
next time you see a guy or a gal up on the top of a ladder
paint brush or roller or sprayer in hand . . .
tip your hat with respect.
it’s not an easy job.
and if you grow roses . . .
FOR PETE’S SAKE !!!!
GROW THEM RIGHT UP BY THE HOUSE.
til soon old bean.
and if you made it to the end of this epistle . . .