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our shop flooded

I think it’s pretty clear what’s going on here today. I’m going to tell you about the first time our shop flooded. Yes, I said first because it happened again… and again.

Let me set the scene for you here, we’re in the middle of the busiest month we’ve had so far as a business. The studio’s still split down the middle, we’ve got chairs and trestles in front of Brandon’s desk, we’ve got tables on tables, tables on the floor. I’m tip toeing around trying not to have any dust from my clothes fall onto the freshly polyurethaned tables on the floor. It’s wild in here right now.

One night, we’re working, it’s around 10PM. I turn around and see water coming in under the door. We look outside and there’s water everywhere. There were two bathrooms, a men’s and a women’s room, literally across the hallway from our unit and there was water pouring out of the toilets, the drains were overflowing. It was insane.

We had no idea what to do. I think first, we ran back into the shop to make sure everything we could move was up off the ground. We called the other tenants who had gone home hours ago, it was close to 11PM at this point, just to let them know what was going on.

On the other side of the building, the office side, there were these guys who would work in shifts all day and all night so they were constantly in and out. They were the only people we’d see when we were there working at 2-3 in the morning. This one guy in particular, who actually ended up being a really good friend of ours, told us that this wasn’t the first time this had happened. The warehouse’s plumbing was fucked up and so whenever it rained a lot, the drains would back up and it would flood.

We called the landlord. Nothing. We were on our own. The guys from the other side of the building started helping us grab sandbags, we were wrapping scrap wood in towels, anything to block our doorway and keep water from coming in. One of the other commercial tenants, who rented all but one of the other units, showed up. We were all in the hallway, shop vacs out, sweeping water towards the door. It was an absolute disaster.

Us and all the guys were there for hours until the flooding stopped. We were tired, our shoes were trashed, and the shop was a mess. Luckily, nothing was ruined, our tables stayed dry, and we felt a real sense of camaraderie from the other tenants probably for the first time.

The next time this happened, at least I think it was the next time, it might’ve flooded one more time in between this, but the most memorable time after that was when we were building the truck camper for our second road trip.

We were leaving in three days. We had just put deck sealer on the camper only for it to start monsooning twenty minutes later. We were so concerned with that, we didn’t even think to check inside. One of the guys from the warehouse came outside to us and asked us if we had seen inside yet. We said no and he just shook his head, ‘bad bad bad, it’s raining.’

Sure enough, we go back inside and one of the pipes on the ceiling in the hallway had burst and was dumping out water. There was already a bucket there because this was a known problem, but nothing had been done to fix it and so the bucket was full, water was pouring down from the pipe, it was raining inside.

At that point, we were exhausted. We’d been pulling all-nighters, trying to get the camper ready, we were totally bummed about the wet deck sealer getting rained on outside, we were supposed to go home and have dinner with our family before this trip but instead, we were stuck at the warehouse for hours, mopping up this mess.

God, I don’t think either of us will ever forget those floods. What a time... And then the was the time the roof over our unit started leaking and the landlord's solution was to give a bucket to catch the water in or the time I went into the bathroom and the stalls were all gone - but those are stories for another day!


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