Hallie-the-Duplex : Week 9 GOOD vs. EVIL

On the nights we don’t have Arden, after getting off work, we usually go out and work on the Duplex until 8:00 p.m. Tiring of working by dim lantern, I hooked up the trailer and brought out the borrowed generator. If you aren’t familiar with hitching a trailer to a vehicle, it’s not very complex, but there are many safety provisions in place to keep it attached to the automobile. The trailer hitch is slid into a fitted slot, which is held in place by a thick metal pin through the holes of the hitch. A metal clip goes over the end of the pin to keep it from sliding out. The trailer then gets hooked onto the hitch, with a clamp and a fitted pin that holds it in place. Finally, lights are plugged in and as an extra safety precaution, a super-thick chain is hooked from the trailer to the back of the hitch that is mounted to the vehicle.



The duplex isn’t located in the best of neighborhoods, though most of the time the streets are dead, especially as the colder weather rolls in. Last night was different though. About 8 guys, teens to men were milling about the sidewalk. Not necessarily together, but enough to notice because it’s uncommon. It didn’t bother me, because it seemed like we’d won people over with our hard work and dedication. Or so I thought. (Sidenote: There is also a fairly strong police presence there.) I turned onto the cobblestone street by the school and was fine. The trailer bumped along rather noisily, so I can’t hardly wait to make it to the main street of Livingston. I approached the intersection of Parsons and then it happened. The trailer made a strange noise and shook the Outlander. There was nowhere to pull over, so I just immediately hop out to investigate. I stare at it in disbelief. The trailer, hitch and all was sliding on the pavement. The only thing semi-holding it in place were the heavy chains.

A woman who works at the hospital, getting ready to cross through the crosswalk as I passed by, comes running down the sidewalk shouting waving her hand. I’m reassembling the hitch, confused about missing parts. A little out of breathe, she hands me the metal pin. It fell out as I drove by her. Which leaves the metal clip that fits over the pin to hold it in place missing. It was secure when I left my house on Walmar. It’s not one of those things that just slides off. It takes strength to push it on or remove it. It’s rounded on one side, so it securely fits over the pin, locking it in place. Which only leaves one verdict. Someone removed it. The lady is kind and reminds me to put my hazards on as cars line up behind me. She suggests using wire, as a temporary hold, but I don’t have any. She mentions that they have a food truck and have to deal with hitches, but I am in fix-the-problem mode and I forget to ask what the name of it is.

I decide on using a bungee cord, hooked and tightly wrapped around, as a temporary fix, just to get it out of the street. I thank her profusely, forgetting to even ask her name, as I hurried to find a place to get out of the way. I pull into Children’s Hospital, but there isn’t an actual lot, just a garage. I end up stopping in a turn lane just so I can give Joel a quick call. He was ahead of me and never knew anything was wrong. I then have to explained to a pissed of hospital security guard that drove up, that I am not just blocking the lane to idly chat on my phone. Thankfully, Joel arrives quickly. In his hand, a locking pin. As in, once it’s on the hitch, the only way it can be removed is with a key. He said that for some reason he felt like he should pick one up yesterday.

Chills much?

It could have been drastically worse. If I didn’t go over the cobblestone, then it wouldn’t have loosened, falling out when it did. Instead, it could have come undone when I was on the freeway. Dragging and swaying at much higher speeds and causing an accident. I’m always calm when shit hits the fan, but this time I can’t help but feel a little freaked out. There are some person(s) that either by a not-well-thought-out prank or sheer asshole-ness wished to cause me harm. Someone I don’t even know. And I’ve got to tell you, that’s very disturbing. On the other side of the coin, there’s the complete stranger, walking to her car after a long day. Being in the right place at the right time to offer her assistance. While I still felt sort-of on top of the situation it was very nice not to deal with it alone. It is times like these that I can’t help but picture the forces of Good and Evil dueling it out.

Well, after this drama, here’s what we’ve accomplished at Hallie.
I though the bathroom would go quick, but I forgot several things. When you are redoing a bathroom that has been completely gutted, you can’t just throw up some tile and call it a day. Up until this point, we were running a hose from the basement. Now, all new water pipes have to be ran. Lots and lots of pipe, because as you guessed it, they were previously ripped out. Charming.

Hallie the Duplex Week 9 pipes in basement copy

Hallie the Duplex Week 9 bathtub faucet copy

Hallie the Duplex Week 9  sink pipes copy

And the tile work I’ve done so far.

Hallie the Duplex Week 9 tile and window

It’s far from pretty, but hoping to pull in together next week when Joel has some time off work for the Thanksgiving.


6 Comments to “Hallie-the-Duplex : Week 9 GOOD vs. EVIL”

  1. Wowza! Scary stuff! I am so glad that it turned out ok in the end and that a good samaritan stopped to help. You guys are having adventures galore!

  2. so glad u kept ur coolo and Joel came to ur rescue…..

  3. OMG!! I was scared reading it…I’m glad it turned out ok..but now I want to go beat somebody’s butt’s…that’s just not right! It could have turned out so badly! I have so many comments…but well.. will keep my mouth shut! I’m just glad you 2 are ok…glad that Arden was not along…plus that lady was amazing! I too wish I knew who she was!!! We could all go check out her truck! I’m glad it all turned out ok..
    And that you 2 are ok…my mind went really ‘wrong’ as I stared to read it..sorry!

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