Posted by: Nancy Skee
I consider myself a relatively handyman kind of person. I’m capable of using a hammer, screwdriver, saw, pliers and the like with pretty good results – a regular do-it-yourself-er.
Since owning the Inn and being busy with all the Inn-owning business, and what with having Tom around with better tools (and skills) than I have, I’ve just had him take care of projects around the joint. Really, why would I want
to do it myself when I can call in the pro? I guess maybe to just prove to myself that I still could.
So, I’ve had these flourescent lights in the laundry room that have been flickering for weeks and finally just quit. I had replaced the bulbs, but that didn’t work and I was getting tired of doing laundry in the dark. I drove on down to Hostetter’s Hardware to get me some advice on what to do next. They are SO nice there and will help you with anything – not like that HomeD place.
- Light Guy: Well, if it’s not the bulbs, it could be the ballast. We can get you one of those, then you won’t have to buy a new fixture. See? You just unscrew this piece, then pull these wires, so you can detach the ground wire and the….
- Me: I can’t do that – too many things I don’t know. Wouldn’t it just be easier to just put up a new one?
- Light Guy: Yes. I’ll explain how to do it, and it also comes with instructions.
I had this. I got home with my two absurdly heavy light fixtures, all smug because I knew what to do with the wire nuts, and hauled everything downstairs. Before turning off the electricity, I shot a cute little video. “Hi, this in Nancy, your Favorite Innkeeper, blah, blah, blah. Here’s the “before” shot of my lights which I’m going to replace. I’ll show you how they turn out if I don’t send an electrical shock through my body in the process, har har har.”
The first light came down with only a little trouble. I was pretty happy singing “We are the champions” with Queen and everything. I climbed back up on my chair to screw in the new fixture. I know what you’re thinking, “Chair? That’s not tall enough!” You’re right. So I put my foot on the big laundry folding table, s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d a little too much to the left, and that’s when everything tipped. The chair, the table, the trash can, the light, the screwdriver, the Innkeeper…to the floor.
It was a very soft landing. Everything was okay, but the top of my hand was tingling. I must have whacked it on the edge of the nearby shelf when I went down. I looked at it and saw blood spewing out of my hand all over the place like Old Faithful in Yellowstone. Just like – straight up – all over the place. It was kind of alarming.
I had two simultaneous thoughts.
- This is how people die. They lose consciousness and all their blood and someone finds them on the floor the next day.
- I should probably be video taping this because I might need to use it in a blog.(Really?!)
Lucky for me neither of those happened, and lucky for me I had that Stop The Bleed course at our Innkeeper’s Convention in November. I put my thumb over the slice and then grabbed a towel to keep everything from dripping, but it really didn’t help. I looked pretty messed up and left a blood trail behind me. At least I was wearing lipstick.
I called Aimee to take me to our local Hershey Medical Center Outlet place in Mount Joy.
When I walked in to the clinic, they all yelled, “Get a doctor! Get a doctor!” and very shortly sent me by ambulance to Hershey Hospital. In the meantime Aimee ran back to the Inn for my wallet and phone. She said she followed the trail to the carnage in the laundry room which, she commented, “…looked like you were attacked by a Velociraptor….”
Happily, we got home later that day, and I was stitched up, almost good as new. But here’s the thing: as grateful as I am that it all turned out okay, I’m still a little bit
disgruntled that the day was gone and my lights still weren’t up. Go figure. Tomorrow I’m calling Tom.