Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!

I begin the 100th post to Quebecker with the swing of a hammer and a cloud of dust.  The Kitchexplosion 2009 has officially begun!

Of course, the story of my kitchen doesn’t begin with the hammer swing; it begins in 1946 when some nitwit decided that a solid wall separating the east and west sides of my house (or specifically, the kitchen and living room) was more useful than a dining space.  If you’re serious about sitting down to eat in my house, it has to done in the basement or on a card table in the living room.  63 years later, April and I set to the task of correcting this major oversight.

Phase 1:

We planned to remove a portion of the wall and to use the open portion as a eating/working space in our kitchen.  This turns out to be no small feat, since the wall in question is bearing the weight of the roof, and is itself supported by a steel I-beam.  The second plan of attack for phase 1 is refitting our rather narrow and deep pantry to be home to our refridgerator.  Unfortunately, the pantry is a hair past 29″ in width, and we own a 32″ fridge.  A quick trip to Lowe’s and $500 got us a new 28″ GE.  Lastly, we’re having an outlet installed over the stove for a wall-mounted microwave.  Owning a wall-mounted microwave has pretty been April’s dream since she was a little girl.

So far Phase 1 has been….dusty.  Plaster walls disintegrate under the slightest pressure, sublimating from a solid wall to a gaseous cloud.  The cloud either settles onto everything in the house, or is inhaled and settles in the lungs.  And since it was a whopping 8 degrees yesterday morning, opening the windows to blow out the dust was not an option.  Still, we thrive.  The sight of a floor-to-ceiling opening between the two rooms was inspiring, and leads to think that the glorious completion of Phase 1 cannot be far off.

Until then, the fate of Phase 2 hangs in the balance, riding on a cloud of carcinogenic dust.

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