My last blog post brought us to the point of me being crammed into a mid-size SUV with an over-sized steel cabinet, departing for home.
Leaving the home improvement store, I stuck to the back roads, seeing no sense at all in major highway travel with only my two big toes between me and disaster.
The drive home was a long twenty minutes. My legs were cramped and my shoulders were sore from hunching over the steering wheel. No sign of my husband, thank goodness. I want to get this thing in the house before he shows up and tries to apply a logical approach to this caper.
I pulled into the garage and turned off the car, pondering my exit strategy from the vehicle. The most sensible plan was to open my door, lean over and slide out arms and head first. Thank God, the neighbors can’t see me.
Freed from the car, I found the hand cart and without enormous effort, pushed the Titan out the back of the SUV and onto the hand cart. “It’s all downhill from here, you’ve got it under control,” I whispered to myself. “You can do this.” Positive self-talk is key throughout many of my undertakings.
I rolled the hand cart loaded with the 6’ tall, 154lb cabinet into the house and paused at the top of the stairs leading down to the basement to adjust my grip on the handle. “Here we go, you’ve rolled stuff downstairs a million times. No big deal. Well, it is a big deal…a big cabinet actually, but you can do it. Just control the drop on each step.” I eased the hand cart to the edge of the top step and took another deep calming breath. “You can do this, you can do this. You can do this.” My husband will be so surprised. I felt the hand cart and cabinet pulling down as they cleared the first step, landing with a thump on the second step. “See? Easy does it, you’ve got it.” I eased the hand cart forward again and gently thumped it down to the next step. “Ten steps to go, LA, you’re almost done.” Another gentle thump and the hand cart rested on the fourth step down.
Now it was time for me to also move off the landing and onto the first step. I lifted my right foot to step down and tripped over my left shoelace. I flailed for the railing, abandoning my precious cargo. With an enormous series of metallic thumps and crashes, the hand cart and cabinet made their own journey down the stairs, landing with a muffled thunk at the bottom of the stairs. I clung to the railing, heart pounding.
“Crap. That was less than optimal.” I descended the steps and surveyed the scene at the bottom. The thunk I’d heard was the Titan embedding itself in the drywall at the foot of the stairs. Also less than optimal. Yep, my husband will definitely be surprised.
I couldn’t very well leave the Titan stuffed into the wall. I figured if I could reach under the cabinet and grab the handles of the hand cart, I could drag the Titan backwards toward the stairs and out of the wall. With a lot of heaving and sweating and yanking, I managed to remove the Titan from its resting place and balance it back again on the hand cart.
Recommence positive self-talk. “OK, that was a tough spot, but you’ve got it under control now. The wall can be patched, the cabinet isn’t damaged and all is right with the world.”
I rolled the cabinet to its new home in the workout room and slowly allowed the cabinet to lower into a full upright position. It was going well until the heavy steel doors flung themselves open, throwing all the weight on the hand cart forward. “Nooooooo!” I scrabbled to grab hold of anything on the smooth steel cabinet but couldn’t get a grip. In desperation I flung myself at the cabinet, succeeding only in riding the cabinet as it crashed face-down onto the cement basement floor.
I laid on the back of the cabinet, my cheek against the cool metal, the hand cart on its side next to me. I seemed to be in good shape, no blood, no pain, no loss of consciousness. I wasn’t so sure my trusty steed, the Titan, was in such good shape.
I dismounted the Titan and took stock of the damage. One door completely off its hinges, a munched corner at the top of the cabinet and a hole in the drywall the size of a toaster.
I couldn’t help but laugh. Yep, my husband sure will be surprised.