(n.) Cabindo: A condo on a lake, among tall old trees. Half cabin, half condo. My first home. This is a running journal of the renovations, projects, and general shoestring budget craziness.

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Friday, June 28, 2013

Kindness is a new stove

My kitchen is right by the entry balcony of my unit. One whole wall of the room is glass and you actually walk by it to get to the front door. 

its my house in a box

You can see some cabinets, the fridge, a bit of the sink, and some wall space as you go by, but the stove is tucked away in a corner over your left shoulder. When I walked up to The Cabindo the first time, I marveled at the pretty new maple cabinets and the attractive kitchen counters. I cringed at the white fridge and shiny rust wall color that made the spacious room look greasy and small, but hey: good lookin' structurally sound cabinets and counters?!? #winning

Then I went in, and there they were: the miss-matching ancient bosom buddies. Side by side. A decrepit taupe dishwasher and an ancient stove; complete with a collection of dead bugs behind the egg timer glass. 

uhh. you said something was pretty in here.....? 
This had been a rental property for many years, so I understand why none of the appliances were from this last decade or matching. That's fine with me; I'm definitely not one of those House Hunter snots who simply muuuuust have all granite and stainless, in their first home, right off the bat, no exceptions. HA! Anyway, I was so excited and smitten with the place: I really didn't care. The appliances worked, which is the most important thing about them, and I thought ok; its not a good looking room right now, but once I paint:

peach walls with green accents
to open up the room and compliment the counters and cabinets

install a back splash:

subway tile with an interesting edge

 put stainless film on the dishwasher:

$20 to fancy

yadda, yadda, yadda....(insert unrealistic expectations here).....it'll be great! Just that easy!

So I bought the place, and upon hosting my first event, used my ugly-but-working (home inspector approved) stove and dishwasher. Errrr....turns out that while they switched on and didn't start a fire, they didn't really fulfill their particular functions. The oven sent out a noticeable waft of gas (up from the delicate one it seemed to emanate even when off) and took forever to heat up to temperature. The btu's it was throwing out also got the room way up in temperature. We lived, peeled off a layer, and had another beer. After dinner, dishes were quickly rinsed and put in the dish washer. Surprise! They came out dirtier. The look on the faces of my and my Bf's mothers were pricelessly: 'disgusted-but-smiling-because-it's-thanksgiving-dammit' when they went to unload it.

So the hunt for affordable replacements began. For safety reasons, and the fact that I can wash dishes by hand but not bake pizza by the power of my gaze, a non-gas leaking oven was first on the list.
I'd struck out on Public Surplus and the ReStore for gas ranges, but hit the jackpot on Craigslist. I saw a lot of high quality gas stoves in the $200/$300 range all over the DC area, mostly far away from me, and still more than I wanted to spend. Then one popped up of the same quality, but offered at $100 and right by my fire station. I immediately called the guy and he said it was still available and would I like to come see it. Yes please and thank you sir!
An important part of Craigslist is the buddy system, so I promised a hearty breakfast after duty the next day to one of my firehouse buddies who lives around the corner in exchange for backup and help lifting.

We get to the seller's house and he was welcoming and friendly. He see's my friend's fire station sweatshirt (this happened right before Christmas and it was cooold out), and tells us about how he's been a long time supporter of the station, takes his grand kids to all the open houses, watches the Santa parade,

donates football tickets to a Redskins game every year for the fire fighters, etc. etc. Again, salt of the earth, lovely, lovely guy.
Oh, and the stove was great too.

hey there shiny britches

So he's having the new stove installed the next day (double oven, Christmas gift for his wife), and we would come back then to pick up the old one once its disconnected. We are going to leave and I try and hand him the advertised $100, and he shakes his head and says, 'how about $75?". Um.....ok!!
We arrive the next day to pick up the oven, and he and his wife hand me an envelope.
It has $75 in it.
I look up at them, and with big smiles on their faces they say: "Thanks for your service. Merry Christmas!"
Well shit.
I don't think it would be appropriate to hug them, and I'm trying not to cry at this point because that's the kindest thing ever and I'm easy to tears, so I just babble profuse thank you's as we lug the thing out the door. Mr.Nice Guy is smiling the whole time and telling us what good cookies the thing bakes. Ugggh, my heart strings are all pulled and my faith in humanity is bolstered.

waiting for installation
the holiday spirit is strong with this one.

Kindness is a new FREE stove.


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