Adventures in Roof Cleaning

I’ve always been of the “Do it yourself” persuasion.  I grew up that way.  My parents were always fixing things by themselves.  If they didn’t exactly know how to do whatever it was, well, they simply faked it.  It didn’t always end up how they had planned, but that never stopped them. Shaun, on the other hand, is from the “oh just pay someone that knows how to do it” crowd.  These two very opposing viewpoints can make life interesting at times. 

We have always had someone come clean the moss (Washington’s state plant) and leaves off the roof.  It drives me nuts to pay someone to do what we (meaning Shaun) are perfectly capable of. All we would need to do is rent a pressure washer and have the guts to climb up there.

After years of being persuaded not to, I finally decided that yesterday was the day I was going to climb up on that roof.  I waited until the girls got home so that they could call 911 just in case something happened.  I didn’t really think anything would happen, but if I listened to Shaun, people fell off the roof and broke their necks all the time. 

I had all my gear gathered and climbed up the ladder from the deck in back just as most of the workmen have done.  Once I reached the top, I gingerly made my way back down the ladder.  It was just too steep and mossy.  There was no way I was going to step off onto that. 

So, we hauled everything to the front of the house.  I easily climbed to the first layer of roof.  Then I had to haul the ladder up there so I could climb the next eight feet or so to the higher section.  As I set the ladder down, I noted that the roof was a bit slippery from moss and dead leaves.  I wiggled the ladder around and it held just fine.  So I started climbing up.  Just as I shifted my leg to swing it onto the roof, the ladder slipped and we went sliding down.  Fortunately, it stopped at the first level instead of going all the way down to the ground. I shakily pulled myself up and tried to figure out where all the blood was coming from and what that screeching noise was.  The blood was from my nose and the noise was Mimi.  She was terrified of what had happened to me.

I managed to convince Mimi that we didn’t really need to call 911 or her dad and put her to work getting me towels and ice packs.  KT took it upon herself to put away the roof cleaning stuff, clean up the blood and try to calm her baby sister.  (I had no idea how good that girl would be in an emergency)  When the bleeding slowed down enough to let me look, I found that my nose now aimed to the left.  I thought that would be a good sign that I should seek medical care. 

I called my doctor and asked if I should come in to them or head the Urgent Care or the ER.  They told me to just come on in.  The shocked look on everyone’s face prompted me to ask the girls to call their dad.  I needed a bit of back up reassurance.  X-rays showed that the bone wasn’t broken but a close look revealed that I had a deviated septum.  I had nearly torn the end of my nose off…and they weren’t quite sure how to fix it.  After contacting a specialist they just put in three stitches to hold everything in place and I will be seeing that specialist in the next day or two. 

When I finally saw my darling husband, after reassuring himself that I was alright ,one of the first things he asked me was if I had learned anything from all this.  He naturally assumed that I would accept that some jobs are best left for the professionals.  He was flabbergasted when I simply told him that I had learned that I needed to make sure the bottom part of the roof wasn’t slippery before I put the ladder up next time. 
I do love messing with that man…

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16 Responses to Adventures in Roof Cleaning

  1. Coffespaz says:

    Wow, I am so glad that you weren’t hurt worse, though I must admit the nose is certainly bad enough. Hope you feel better soon! No more ladders on the roof, please!

  2. Tink says:

    Omg omg omg. I was holding my nose through half of that post. Empathy pains perhaps? Are they going to be able to fix you up? I’m totally of the do-it-yourself breed. And like you, it’s gotten me hurt more times than I’d like to admit. But since no one else will prove me wrong, I always end up being the guinea pig to show him (because it always involves a “him”) that the money doesn’t need to be wasted.

  3. ashley says:

    Ouch! Shaun told me what happened. Hope your head isn’t throbbing too much today!

  4. Jay says:

    That was a close call. I don’t own a home, but I’m pretty sure that anything needs to be done that requires a ladder will be done by people who know what the heck they are doing.

  5. oddmix says:

    So what’s so funny? That is exactly the lesson you should have learned! 😉

    I hope you are feeling better, now. Nose injuries are no fun.

    The weekend words are up.

  6. mjd says:

    Oh, I hope that you are feeling better. My husband and I both are likely to fix something rather than calling the repair people. Luckily, I am afraid of heights so there is no climbing on the roof to get rid of our moss for me. My husband, however, does climb on the roof and that scares me too. Anyway, be careful with those home repair jobs.

  7. Peggy says:

    I hope you don’t have black eyes with that knock to the nose! If you’re going to continue to do that stuff, please be a bit more cautious OR more graceful!

  8. Aunt Mary says:

    The best part of that whole story is the punch line “Messing with the man”I could`t stop laughing.You never lose your sense of humour

  9. gawilli says:

    Geez you are so lucky. I hope you are easily fixable and good as new before long. We are of the same ilk as you, which means that sadly enough neither one of us has the good sense to stay off of the roof. But that’s another story! Hope you are on the mend.

  10. Kell says:

    Oh my God, Susan! I’m glad it wasn’t any worse and I hope you’re not in too much pain now that everyone has relaxed. And aren’t you proud of your oldest?!? That’s awesome. In our family, I’m the one who wants to call in someone, and my hubby is the one who doesn’t want to waste any money and do it himself. It usually works out, but I’m a nervous wreck.

  11. Newt says:

    I call a pro, the husband thinks he can fix. Our track record has proven though that do it yourself is 10X harder than you think and costs 10X more than your initial estimates.

    I’m VERY glad you are ok. That was scarry!

    Here in MN the roofs are SOOOOO steep. The hubby has only climbed up once and that was to put on a chimney cap. All other work has been done by professionals. When you have roof work done there is also a “severe pitch” charge here because of the extra risk involved. Or because they can get away with it……….

    Please, take care of yourself……………

  12. Aunt Mary says:

    I`m so sorry Susan .I wouldn`t have been laughing if I saw that photo first.In fact it brought tears to my eyes an Uncle Bill`s too.Please take care.Love ya ….

  13. Gaile says:

    Wow. You were very lucky! (I’ve been blog hopping so I’m not sure how I found your site. Ironically I used to have a blog called “slices of life”)!

    ANYWAY… I just wanted to say again that you were really lucky. My husband fell off our roof Jan 13th, 2006 and was not so lucky. Broken ribs, punctured and collapsed lung, crushed vertebrae were the worst of it, along with a week in the hospital and several months off work. He still has a lot of pain, and that’s made life more difficult for us all.

    I hope you feel better soon and please, think twice before climbing on the roof again!

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