• Fern

Bathtub Spaghetti

It wasn’t funny when it happened; in fact it merited a very loud “SHIT!” from me. Was it just another snafu in the miasmic nightmare of a kitchen renovation?

We ate at the dining room table in the living room for six weeks, surrounded by rolled up rugs, cast aside cabinets to house needed utensils, a filthy shop vac, a broom, a stepladder. Paperwork, shims, tools, and parts lay everywhere. A two foot folding table became the epicenter of our lives, holding coffee maker, toaster, electric skillet, microwave, and hot plate. These small appliances were juggled on and off the table as needed. We ‘enjoyed’ six weeks of one skillet meals, dipping into a brief foray of frozen dinners for a spell, which neither of us could abide. We embraced paper plates, which I’d not purchased for over five years. Bowls, mugs, utensils, and the ever-used electric skillet, were washed in the bathroom sink. At least once a week the bathroom sink clogged up, what with clam debris, onions tidbits, and other left-over food chunks not scraped entirely.

Did I mention the plaster dust everywhere? Covers on the furniture, sheets hanging in the doorways? The ins and outs of the carpenters, the drilling, the sawing, the electric nail gun, the glue smell, the tools, the tools, the tools. Screws and nails, hinges, molding bits lay everywhere.

There was the missing glass fronted cabinet door, the warped cabinet door, the split in the valence, the sliding door open, closing, opening, closing. April brought rain and intense spikes of heat and cold. The deck was piled with old cabinets under tarps.

Then, the other night, as the finish line lay so close, I boiled up some spaghetti. Forgetting that the new sink and faucet had finally been hooked up, I headed into the bathroom to drain the pasta. Forgoing the sink, I elected to drain it into the tub. Holding the colander in my left hand and the pasta with the boiling water in my right, I dumped, my glasses fogged up…and missed. When the steam cleared, there lay the spaghetti in the bathtub. Shit! I rinsed it well and served it up. Halfway through the meal John asked what the “shit” was about. I told him, with assurances that I’d rinsed it thoroughly. Still…

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