Thursday, October 10, 2013

Watery Hubris

After nearly 5 years of apparent success, the first evidence of distress has now worked its way to the surface. I guess I've always known that my confidence was misplaced, that the rain was not really defeated from finding its way behind the wall, somewhere, somehow, and that it would eventually find the precious, soft, thirsty pine and give it a drink, which is OK for a while but only until the drinking becomes a problem and the wet wood invites mold and mildew to set up. I knew this would happen, and I could have done more to prevent it if only I had better understood the process back then. And now I can see a dark stain on the trim of our breakfast room window. The horror.

Water doesn't flow into a wooden structure, not like water flows down a ditch. No, the wooden boards pull it in, one cell feeding another, sucking it along the path of least resistance. I should have used a vapor barrier like tar paper just behind the trim. But I suppose that seemed overly cautious at the time.

Now the question is: where is the water getting in? Nothing invites superstition more than that question. After 10 years in this house, I have given up on the leaks. It rains, and when it rains long enough, the water gets in. The roofers I've called just shrug their shoulders--what can be done? Nothing. Rain will seep into the tiniest of tiny cracks, the skinniest of skinny pin holes.

I see what needs to be done but am lacking the will to do it. I can see that someone attempted a repair to the tiles by slathering them with concrete. These tiles need to be removed and replaced.

By god, I will do it.

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