A year ago today, Easter Sunday, I came home to my apartment in the morning after having spent the night at my parents’ house. My landlady was waiting in the hall for me. She told me something had happened in the middle of the night. Honestly that whole part is a blur. I know she said something about having to go into my apartment. She told me that a hot water pipe had burst in the unit above mine and that the water had come into my apartment. (The first thing I did was assume my annoyingly loud upstairs neighbour had done something wrong but it turns out he had recently moved out. I never got to live below someone quiet!)
I was greeted by two large fans and some kind of machine that was pumping water into my bathtub.
The ceiling above my couch was no longer there and there was drywall dust all over my couch and floor.
One of the first things I noticed was that my Mickey Mouse cloud framed print had soaked up water. One of the next things I noticed was that all of my cels or other framed prints on the same wall and adjacent walls were fine.
Even though I was initially shocked and upset, I somehow managed to focus on the positive side of things. This still surprises me and some of my friends and family because I tend to be a pessimistic, glass half empty kind of girl! For some reason instead of seeing a damaged couch, I saw a place I could have been lying if I had had an overnight guest. Yes my couch covers were ruined, but I wasn’t scalded or scratched by drywall pieces!
I also managed to laugh about things. I posted this picture of my tax paperwork on Facebook with a caption that I hoped I didn’t get audited!
Despite some laughter, overall the days and weeks PF (post flood) were not fun. I had to move out of my apartment and back with my parents, commuting back and forth between Ajax and the city to get stuff packed and moved out so that the building could fix the damage. I was completely exhausted. It turned out that the pipes were faulty (and there is some sort of class action suit about them) and that after my unit was renovated, all remaining units in the building had their pipes preemptively replaced.
I had to throw out a few things and some things were damaged beyond repair (like my laptop) and in the end, thanks to my insurance deductible, it cost me more than $1000. On the plus side, I decided to look for somewhere new to live and after looking at two places fell in love with where I currently live. I wrote a compelling letter to my landlady that convinced her to let me out of my lease (they were probably thankful to be avoiding a lawsuit!) and was able to get a “free” move out of the insurance company since my stuff was in storage and they didn’t care where it moved to.
I was lucky to have very understanding managers who let me miss work to take care of packing and moving. I was also lucky to have retired parents who could supervise packing and moving when I wasn’t there. My mom was out of town when I moved into my new place so my dad helped with the movers one day (I had two moving in days plus new furniture delivered!) and the installation of the cable, internet and phone.
A year later, I’m living in a bigger apartment that’s in a vibrant neighbourhood within walking distance of work. The only thing I really miss from my old ‘hood is living next door to the high school because I used their track for running. My new place is close to the Waterfront Trail which makes long distance training so much easier.
Every night I’m able to look out my bedroom window and see the CN Tower.
(Okay there has only been fireworks one time when I looked out but it’s still a pretty cool view!)
Oh I remember one thing I miss from my old place – quiet. There is a lot of traffic (and drunk party people) noise here but on the positive side (there it is again!) the most annoying thing my upstairs neighbour does is walk around from time to time in heels. I bought a white noise machine my first week here. My Fitbit tells me that I don’t sleep well here (I actually slept better on a recent trip to NYC!) but I think it’s worth the trade off with all of the pluses of the neighbourhood.
I couldn’t replace my Mickey print so I decided to keep it and hang it in my bedroom. It’s wrinkled from water and the glass is broken from the move but I still like the image and it reminds me that sometimes things aren’t as bad as they might seem.