Trying to keep my mind off Ashcroft, I spent yesterday in a whirlwind of activity. That never-ending office project with 6 layers of Venetian plaster on the walls doesn't just happen, you know. I decided to replace the light fixture since all my furniture is conveniently still in the hall, which invariably led to a spontaneous decision to repaint the ceiling. Huge clumps of it fell off. Never again will I believe the claims on those aerosol cans for spot treatment of a textured ceiling either. Clever advertising makes you think you'll choose fine, medium or heavy splatter, but "messy" is the setting of the day. Of what relevance is the ability to go on purple and dry white?
I've learned, barely and at a ridiculously slow pace, that it's easiest to show what you're shopping for if you don't speak the language of mechanically-oriented men by pointing and grunting, and proceeded to remove the light fixture to take to Lowe's. Completing 8 rounds of "did I turn the breaker off? I think so..." while standing on tiptoes on a stepladder, looking into a dark hole, while being petrified of animals falling through isn't easy as you'd think. None of my assorted tools (hammer, wrench or screwdriver) did anything more than injure a cuticle. Frustrated, I cut the wires with scissors, then threw all the damn parts in a bag, only to be looked at like a complete moron when I got there because apparently the stupid assembly unclips. Oh.
Now the list of necessary equipment has gotten longer. Wing nuts and wire strippers to reconnect wires before attempting to shove spring-loaded clamps back into the ceiling, which unfortunately didn't help it all fit in the same precise manner the old one did, but nothing fell on my head. Hope springs eternal.
It worked, and I was proud, dare I say enamored, of my handyman self. Evening had a funny way of changing perspective, however, as I kept imagining I smelled smoke. A short-circuit in the ceiling might smolder for a few hours in the attic before taking over the whole house (reason #32 for my insomnia) so I packed a suitcase with my important documents, photos, external hard drive, and put all the cats outside. I resisted the urge to pack my car with all my favorite things - it might look like a well-planned arson attempt.