Fire

Well, it has been 2 weeks since the kitchen fire.  If I sit back and abstractedly watch what has happened since it can be humerous.  But if I let myself become personally involved I could sit and cry.The first day came the "restoration - cleanup crew" to do an estimate.  WOW!   Couldn't believe that a fire involving the stove, one large cabinet, the exhaust fan, a smaller cabinet over the stove and the resulting melted tiles on the ceiling could ever create such havoc in our lives!FYI - fire creates smoke (soot) and it can travel the entire size of your home.  Frequently it travels to the farthest point, including behind closed doors.  :(They estimated that the entire house walls would have to be cleaned, sealed & repainted.  All the flooring & carpeting cleaned and deodorized.  Can you imagine that!!??At this point I had not even conceieved how much work that entailed.Day 2 came the insurance adjuster to approve the first estimate.  We still had not been told the pending amounts, just what we could expect (vaugley).Day 3 my daughter & I delayed a round-robin trip to PA so as to eliminate some of the stuff that came from Mom's house after her death.  It took us from May till November to do all that cleaning.  So, since some of it had been brought here we were overloaded with "stuff".Day 4 at 4 AM we headed on our trip and 5 miles into it we had a beautiful (sarcastic) deer jump into the front of the car.  Trip delayed 1 hour while we awaited the return call from an officer to take the report.  Damage to the deer, probably nothing since we were almost stopped & she ran away.  Damage to the car still undetermined since we never updated our insurance to includ liability.Day 5 a phone call from hubby complaining that the "restoration" company wanted to collect a check for the $500 deductible with the insurance.  Told him where the checkbook was and which one to use.  Meanwhile we were having breakfast with our step-daughter in NJ waiting to complete the rescue of 2 cats in PA who had been abandonded by unmentioned family members & the reson for the trip from NC to PA.  At approximately 7 PM that night we headed back home with the cats in carriers on the back seat of our car.  The serinade for the entire trip home was unbelievable.Day 6 we arrived home, after several stops in strange areas for naps, without further event.  It was now approximately 2 PM on Saturday.  We were exhausted and immediately headed to bed for some long naps.The following week, the cleaning crew arrived at 8:30 AM on Monday.  They came with some strong smelling chemicals and several very large boxes for packing.  The first thing the did was remove the stove & the pantry sized cabinet which had been burned, and the hood fan unit.  During that time all the pots & pans in the house were packaged and put into a large pod that had been placed in the front yard.  Thus the end of the real cooking till they were finished.  Then the house began to smell from the strong chemicals.  Our eyes were even watering from it.  At least we still had our dishes, microwave and toaster oven for some cooking.Tuesday came more boxes and more cleaning chemicals.  We were in awe and went out to transact some other business.  When we returned the dishes had been removed, but we still had cups for coffee & tea and some canned food.  All the plastic freezer bowls were still here so "nuking" food was not a problem.Wednesday, all the rest of the dishes disappeared into those big brown holes called packaging boxes.  More cleaning and now I had to decide if I wanted them to clean all the clothes & linens professionally or wash them myself.  Enough craziness!!!! I started loading the washer & dryer. That evening we headed to the store for some of those microwaveable pasta meals because the toaster oven had been removed.Thursday we headed to our chiropractor appt.  When we returned the rest of the kitchen had been emptied except what I had put in the d/w.  The bathroom had been cleaned and everything packed.  Now we were without combs, brushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, antiseptic ointments and medications to say the very least. By Friday we had had enough!!!!  Now they were in the hall and removing the books I sell at Alibrius - account put on hold!  They were also in the bedroom removing clothes and other toiletries.  I actually went in there and helped with the sorting & packing so I could be sure to shove necessary things in drawers.  Even our shoes were wiped down and packed!!!  The poor cat was so distraught & traumatized that she hid under the bed all day.  We were soooooo happy to hear them say they were done for the week.Come Monday they are packing up this room ... our office from where I run our business, ministry and personal financial matters like paying bills & keeping check books.  I am terrified of what will come after that.  In the meantime we are totally done with microwaved pasta dishes.  Gonna find some TV dinners to eat for a few days, but we really aren't happy with them either.  Want & crave some good home cooking!I guess the painters will come on Tuesday and we won't be able to stand the smell again.ADVICE to anyone in similar circumstances:  When the insurance company offers to send you to a motel till it is done - RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN!!!!Unfortunately we couldn't do that since we have a goat about to kid and 4 emu in breeding season and over a dozen of their eggs in incubators.  Can you imagine what woud happen if we weren't here to keep an eye on the eggs?  They would probably have put the incubators into those big deep brown holes for storage and smelling rotten later.