Flash Rust


Catching a few minutes pause between coats of rust-inhibiting paint on our old claw foot tub. It got moved out on the deck on Friday and I’ve had intimate lessons in the concept of flash rust. Basically, one shouldn’t sand or grind a metal object one intends to paint until just before you paint it. If you sand early and it rains say, you get a “flash rust” lesson and you get to sand and grind and wire wheel more than you did the first time. It was a little like making a carry at high altitude, I got to cover the same ground over and over again.

But now, there are two coats of paint on the tub and it only sprinkled some rain to bring up our heart rates (the paint said-it shouldn’t have rain touch it for 24 hours) so the tub is doing a good imitation of an orange ghost or a rather misshapen pumpkin by hiding out under one of our camping tarps.

Speaking of camping, Marian and I have been “camping” in our house since Friday when they removed the main drainage stack and plumbing in the bathroom. No water, no sewer, no toilet. Frankly, it’s easier to camp outdoors where you can go off and find a fine spot to take care of business. Instead we are making well-timed visits to local restaurants and schlepping our camping pee bottles with us to work when we head there for a shower.

Now that all the demolition has been done (and of course, it was more extensive than anyone had imagined-when planning renos double the time and triple the budget), they can start putting everything back together again starting tomorrow with the hope of water by Wednesday. So as you can see, my week was consumed by renos…either waiting for deliveries, making upteen visits to building supply stores, consults with “da guys,” painting, sanding, cutting quarter-round (thank god Marian has more spatial intelligence than I or we might still be up in the new study…the new floor looks fab!), and collapsing our existence into every smaller and smaller spaces as the reno virus spread. Pockets of sanity in the house are harder to find-rather like taking a layover on a big expedition where a metaphoric bomb goes off and things explode from your backpack to be found, dried, and organized before the next big storm rolls through.

Apart from the urban adventure of renos, I’ve managed three runs this week. The ankle is doing well in taking on the new activity. It’s been great to back at it and I’ve reconnected with old running/training routes in the early morning. It reminds me that I do know how to train. I feel rather like the new cork floor that got laid down on the third floor this week, that I am laying a foundation of gentle discipline.

I’m reminding myself and relearning about how to make training happen in my new life as part of partnership. When I lived alone, I could train just about any time but now I’m sorting through how to fit training in around all the other joys of life like sharing a yummy breakfast on a sun-drenched deck amid the basil and oregano. I figure August is foundation time–training in a summer pace–amid plenty of flower-smelling and reno-projecting.

I thought I would make another invite for folks to join me on the trek into Everest base camp. There is a trek at the beginning of the expedition that meets in Kathmandu on March 30 and last about 2.5 weeks. There are four or five folks already signed up to trek in with me at that point. There is also another trek leaving May 1 that will hit base camp right about summit bid time…more info on these treks can be found on the Peak Freaks website: http://peakfreaks.com/ebc_trek.htm and I would be happy to answer any questions about the experience as well.

I also have a friend who is considering trekking in sometime in May who is going to work with my friend Raj to create a trek and she is looking for a traveling companion as well. If you’d like to trek in a very small group, let me know and I will patch the two of you together. Peak Freaks has been holding spots for friends of mine, which they will release soon so I wanted to put one last invite out to join us on the amazing journey to Everest! I’m touched that folks are going to great lengths to come along and I can’t wait to show them one of my favourite places in the world.

Finally, a climbing friend of mine, Alan Arnette has a mountain-sized ambition to climb the seven summits while raising a million dollars for Alzheimer’s research. He’s also hoping some folks will join him on some of the climbs. I’m thinking I will do my best to climb Mount Vinson with Alan in November of 2010 (a better length of time for raising the funds than this year I concluded). If you are thinking of climbing Kilimanjaro, this might be a great opportunity and great cause to support.

Please check out Alan’s project at http://www.alanarnette.com/alzheimer/memories7summits.php

Have a great week. Time to give the tub another coat of paint and then log my training hours.


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