It occurred to us one day that single-paned windows may not be the best thing to have in an already-leaky old farm-house. That didn’t astound us as much as the fact that it took 30 years of living here to suddenly have the light bulb go on or the light shine in on this fact. I wonder – and then ruminated – on what we had done with all the money that could have gone into changing the windows decades ago. And then I anguished about the possibility that we might have made a bit of a dent on saving the environment had we not squandered our earnings on food, clothing, paying loans, and sending the kid to university.
The truth is I couldn’t imagine how I would prepare the rooms (15 windows!) so that there was access to the windows. And then there was the worry about how much damage there would be to the existing frames and how much would it cost to fix the collateral damage! I rarely seem to worry about the task itself as I do about collateral damage; an approach that, my friends and mentors point out, keeps me from actually engaging in potentially life changing events.
Well, as it turned out – and yes, it often turns out this way – the ball got put into play unexpectedly when a company called to say they would be in the area to put in windows and would I like a quote. Impulsively I said, Sure! Who knows if they were really in the neighbourhood but the timing seemed right. And this time, I thought to myself, perhaps I could capitalize on what might be the collateral effects; how’s that for a positive outlook! There are three rooms in the house that are good candidates for an episode of Hoarders and this would be a good time to do some Radical De-cluttering.
So there we were on the holiday weekend, packing, tossing, and trucking to charity bins what could be re-used from 30 years of clinging. And I learned something about how to meet collateral effects.