I'm in a lovely old house with maintenance issues and problems like missing light fixtures and switch plates (seems someone ripped these off Edith's walls and ceilings to turn a buck without the new owner's knowledge or permission). Thankfully, my husband had capped all the bare wires before we moved in and we know we could go pick up some second hand fixtures to have Edith back in action with some proper lighting.
The next little adventure I had came in the form of the illegal radiant heater on the second floor that I only discovered was so after our gas was cut* and I had to have someone come in to light all the pilot lights.(*that happened after a mere 3 days into our stay in Edith. Yes, it was quite fun to have the gas cut off, especially when you had made arrangements to be on the billing only to discover someone(?) mucked it up and then get charged for reconnecting it... !) Ultimately the gas cut off did turn out to be a good thing, since we also discovered the uncapped gas line in the living room fireplace and had the serviceman deal with that for us.
Despite all these little adventures, we still were thinking of staying on. We would deal with the cosmetics. We would figure out a way to make her more energy efficient (all Edith's pretty windows are single panes and we could imagine very high heating bills come winter time). We talked of ripping out the stinky old carpets and sanding her wood floors. Of reworking her sad main floor kitchen (lucky for me, my husband has installed and built cabinets for a living). And then. Just as we were thinking we could refresh Edith for the time we could live here.... Well. That's when she had a plumbing problem. The kind that flooded the basement. Did I mention that the basement had a carpeted suite? That the basement was old and smelly to begin with? That past renters had left an odd assortment of unwanted furnishings downstairs that included old mattresses (read: super sized sponges...)? We now had a serious problem in a house that was slated to be torn down in a couple of years and we had only been here about 9 days! We had to hire a cleaning service to clean up before we could get another professional in to address the blockage in the sewer line. Yep. There is our most recent adventure in Edith. The sewer backed up in Edith's basement. We had just got back from a weekend of camping and now this.
We spent more than 24hours without being able to use the plumbing. We made the arrangements to have the mess cleaned up and to get the line unblocked (thankfully the tree roots that caused the problem were dealt with quickly... but what about the next time? Because you know there will be a next time with the number of trees in this yard alone and the age of the sewer pipe...). We stayed with Edith through this 'adventure'. Many thanks to the kind neighbour that let us use his washroom for the time we couldn't use ours. (Now there's an adventure! Dashing next door in the night with your flashlight and unlocking your neighbours front door so you can go use the facilities. The humour in it strikes me now. Especially considering that while camping we had flush toilets to use and hot showers at the campground).
Can you see why now that we were ready to leave Edith? She has problems that could make this very challenging and possibly costly to live with and the bottom line is that she is not ours and that she is slated to be demolished.
And yet... I still find my mind toying with the idea of doing what it takes to make her livable so we can stay. If we can find something suitable elsewhere that we can afford, we will likely move. Meanwhile we're still living out of our duffel bags, sleeping in our sleeping bags and keeping our household in moving boxes. I have told our boys (who have taken it all in stride very admirably) that this experience makes for some great story telling, "Our adventures in Edith"... ;o)