Many of you knew my aunt, Inny (a nickname my son created when he couldn’t say “Ginny”).
Her *real* name was Irene. So, when I heard Hurricane Irene was coming, I had to giggle.
See, my aunt died back in February and I’ve been waiting for a spiritual visit. You know, dream-walking or finding something of hers in a seriously silly spot. I never imagined she’d bear down on the east coast like an angry witch!
However, I wasn’t all that concerned. Yes, she [the hurricane] was powerful but I wasn’t afraid she’d do too much damage.
Besides, I had coconut juniors, Inny’s favorite, and I was willing to offer them to the bitchy goddess in a beg for leniency.
I did what most people did; got rid of all the potential flying debris in my yard, taped up windows and tried my best to tarp and caulk a window in my basement that I thought was the culprit of my indoor pool.
Irene bore down on us and blew us about a bit. Dumped a lot of rain, but left my house blissfully alone (thank you Tastykake!)
Or so I’d thought.
I *did* get more water in my basement and in areas that don’t normally “flood”. Nothing major, but my carpet had JUST dried out from the last storm, damnit!
I had a call into my insurance company because of the previous water intake, but wasn’t getting to excited about help. To be honest, I was anxious about NOT getting help.
I’m an engineer. I make good money. But I’m also a single mom who’s had quite a few financial attacks in the last year or two (Jake’s surgeries, a water heater that needed replacing, a chimney that needed re-pointing and the death of my aunt). The idea of trying to fix damage from Hurricane Irene had me VERY anxious. I haven’t slept since Hurricane Irene. Seriously. And sleep is my best friend (deserting bitch!)
Yesterday, the adjustor and his team showed up to walk around and through my disgustingly dirty/messy house (hey! I clean on weekends and Irene knocked out my power for a bit, so nothing got vacuumed).
While outside, he looked at my tarped basement window and told me water taken-on from ground level wasn’t covered.
My heart dropped. Shit.
While we went into the basement to check out damage, his team went up on my roof.
I showed him the wet (now dry) carpeting and told him I just threw out a bunch of stuff (which I did) because it was wet and smelled AWFUL. While measuring it all and writing it up, he found water stains on my drop ceiling tiles.
Magically, my water damage was now covered because it was coming from above!
I was floored. (bwahahaha, no pun intended, didn’t catch that until the read-through)
We go upstairs and I fend off the cats so he could cut a piece of my carpeting to take as a sample and then go into my [messy] office to show him pics I had taken of my gutter damage (which CAUSED the water damage in the basement).
Apparently, my retarded, acrobatic pictures were exactly what he needed (they showed that the gutters had pulled away and pulled some of my siding away as well…BINGO, that’s where the water came in).
His assistant (who so happened to be his son) came in to show me damage to my roof.
I have wind damage, missing shingles, brittle shingles, and my chimney has cracking along the roof line.
At this point, I’m about ready to just curl in a ball and start keening.
I turn to the adjustor to ask a question and he tells me I’m getting a new roof.
I don’t know how I did it, but I held it together until they left the house (they weren’t even to their cars yet) and I started bawling.
A huge weight lifted. I think, subconsciously, I was extremely worried about my roof. I know every time I was outside, I’d look at it (what I could see of it) and silently pray it would keep holding. I knew it was about 8 years old when I bought the house and that it had FOUR layers of shingles in spots, but I don’t think I REALLY grasped it all.
And I know, I’m a grown-ass woman with a freakin’ engineering degree, I should have known better. Or at least done some mental calculations about weight ratios and surface area vs. wind gusts (and we get some SERIOUS gusts in my area), but it was something that was monetarily out of my league and it never occured to me to turn to my homeowners’ insurance.
I’m glad I listened to my friends.
So, LONG story short, I asked for help and I got it, in spades.
I’m still a little leary because nothing’s been written up yet and I still have to get estimates and crap, but someone finally took pity on me and sent me a boon.