Moving is the Worst
I am happy to help friends in need in their time of trouble. If I am needed to take a sick friend to the doctor, I am there in five minutes. If I am asked to run an errand, I will do it in minutes. I can cook someone dinner, take the kids to school, make sewing repairs, and rake the leaves. I will wash the car, chop fire wood, go to the laundry, or grocery shopping. It is all journeyman work and it is where I draw the line. If I must employ a particular skill I don’t have or if I have to exert extraordinary effort, I have to give it some thought. Such was the case recently when a friend was in the midst of moving to a new house and needed someone to take down the above ground pool. It is something hard to do, especially if the pool is of significant size. Many times when you sell a property, the pool goes with it. This is certainly true for in-ground pools, but it may apply to an unwieldy above ground version that practically requires a crane to move.
My friend said that she had instructions that she printed out from https://homepoolsplus.com/ and I could bring someone strong along. Emptying the pool would take place at a designated time when the water could run off properly. You unscrew a valve, she said. No brainer. Ha! So then what? The water is flooding the ground and you have to wear wading boots to approach it to start the folding process. You can’t roll it or manipulate it just any old way. There is a pattern to follow so the pool can be loaded in the back of a van or pickup truck. One look at the diagram and I knew I was in trouble. Yes, I was giving this thankless job some serious thought.
My friend tried to bribe me with food and drink, but it was hardly an adequate enticement. I had to decline gracefully and get out of this impossible obligation. I could invent a cold, a broken ankle, a sick dog, or an emergency business meeting. Would she believe me at all? I could tell her the truth, that I was not up to the job, but I risked losing a dear friend. She was so busy packing and worrying about getting out of the house in time that she was not approachable. I weighed the pros and cons and decided on the best course of action.
I ended up hiring a service for a fee. $100 was a small price to pay to keep a friendship of ten years. The crew came on time and emptied the water as planned when no one was home. It took an hour before the next stage of the process could begin. I watched the magnificent folding of the plastic marvel that I had often enjoyed for a summer night swim. I started to become nostalgic as I realized that my friend would no longer be around the corner. Calm down, I told myself. She is two miles away!