Not very pretty is it?
This is where I spent a couple of hours of my afternoon. My house was once a duplex so I had two of everything. Two living rooms, which I knocked out walls to make one big living/dining room. Two den kinds of rooms where I also knocked out a bit of wall to go between what is not my office and my studio. And two kitchens.
I only use one kitchen. I gave away the extra stove but kept the icebox. It’s nice having that extra fridge and freezer for holidays, wine and girl scout cookies. Mostly though, it was my workshop and storage. The cabinets were full of tools and things like old yearbooks. (Why have I kept those things? I never look at them.). We called it the project room.
I normally like demolition. I got to do a lot of it in my last house in Virginia. But doing it there was different. There, I could freely rip everything out in a beserkers frenzy of sledgehammers and crowbars. It was pure demo, a clearing out and nothing more.
This though, this is more like therapy, where you want to tear down stuff, but also want to keep the good stuff. These cabinets for instance. I want to reuse them on my back porch for gardening tools. I want to use the hood range in my current kitchen (It’s nicer than the one that is there right now.) So no rough and ready ripping apart for me. I had to be careful and systematic. So it was step by step. Up and down to the basement to find the right circuit breaker for the power. Slowly disassemble the hood range. Undo the wiring. Find and remove, screw by screw, all the fasteners in such a way that the whole thing did not fall off the wall,
There were some pretty cleverly hidden screws. Took me a while to get them all. There was some funky adhesive on the back wall. That’s the way it is in old houses. Everything takes longer. There are no standard ways of doing anything.
It’s not so much hard, as tedious.
I am not a fan of tedious. I like wham, bam, rip apart kind of demo.
That’s part of why therapy has always been hard for me. It’s tedious. It’s slow. There’s no predictable path. You never know what you are going to find as you pry apart your life to turn it into what you want to be. There are always surprises. No wonder people avoid it. It’s a mess.
Just like the project room I am demoing. It’s a mess. But it will be a new art studio. And my current studio will be an office for my wife, where we can banter back and forth as we each work, something we like to do. The project room will become something new and different, and yet, with the same bones as the kitchen it once was.
Just like therapy. A mess. A path to something wonderful, but slow, weird and tedious.