Early on Sunday morning, I woke when I had actually intended to perhaps sleep in a little. In that half asleep state, eyes still heavy from a late night spent with a new book, I could hear a slow …drip… …drip… …drip… originating from somewhere in the house.
I covered my eyes, rolled over and began to slowly drift back into sleep, not giving the sound too much thought, it was perhaps simply the shower head leaking again as it is prone to do on occasion.
Suddenly I sat bolt upright in bed, listening again
…drip… …drip… …drip…
The water sound wasn’t coming from the bathroom, I knew that much. Climbing quickly out of bed I followed the sound through into the living room. Immediately I was greeted with the sharp smell of rust and old masonry, dirty brown water running rivulets down the far wall from ceiling to floor. Water running over power outlets and behind window frames, dripping steadily onto the hardwood, splashing over Mikey’s colouring table and toys.
After hurriedly rescuing everything that I could, discovering that several things were already ruined, I called my rental company and was answered with voicemail. The weekend is considered after hours so instead of hearing a human voice on the other end of the line, I was left with the assurance of an unsympathetic electronic voice that someone would call me back as soon as possible.
All of us awake now, Mikey asking why it was raining indoors, we left barefoot through our front door to see if any other neighbours were having problems. We discovered the foyer to the building was flooded, neighbours still wearing pajamas and nightgowns poked heads from their doors to tell us that yes, they had water in their apartments too. No one could contact anyone who was able to help. The water kept on coming, the power outlet below the leak began to crackle.
Sometime in the afternoon the water slowed to a trickle and stopped. The bucket I had placed below the worst of the dripping was half full by then, the towels had been soaked and replaced with fresh, only to be soaked through again. The ceiling is bowed, the walls beginning to wrinkle. The hardwood floor swollen and spongy, window frames warped and walls stained with brown streaks.