A Moment in My Life – Friday, January 8, 2021
Have you ever tried to do the right thing by not doing something but eventually, your hand was forced to take action anyway? Two days after the first Shelter in Place order was mandated back in March 2020, all four blades fell off my garbage disposal. Great timing, right? The Coronavirus was too new and scary at that time, so I adhered to the stay-at-home order and avoided all non-essential activities. I took the disposal as a non-essential and held off replacing it until Covid-19 ended.
It wasn’t easy reverting to the caveman days with no garbage disposal, but I stuck it out. It was rough and frustrating, but it became less cumbersome with each passing month as I acclimated to collecting food particles to prevent them from going down the drain.
Once I got used to it, it wasn’t that bad. However, one cold evening in December, when I went out to dump the discards into the yard waste bin, a flurry of anger towards Covid-19 raced through me for a second as I was seriously missing having a functioning disposal and wished that I could replace it. It was a mindless wish that evaporated as soon as I returned to the warmth of my house.
On New Year’s Eve, I was getting ready to make dinner when my attention was diverted to a puddle of water on the floor in front of my dishwasher. I frantically wrung up the water before opening the dishwasher door to investigate and saw a pool of clear water at the bottom. Where did that water come from? Why was there a pool of water? I was mystified since I hadn’t run the dishwasher in a day or so, and I hadn’t been using the kitchen sink recently. What on earth could have justified the pool of water?
My first thought was that I took too long to replace the garbage disposal, and now the complications from the broken disposal came out to haunt me. My second thought was that I must have carelessly let food particles escape down the drain, and it was impacting my dishwasher. Until my friend, Jenni, suggested different things to check, all relating to the disposal, those were merely random thoughts as I ladled pitchersful and wrung towels full of water out of the dishwasher. What a task!
I mopped up as much water as I could, but it wasn’t draining. Out of desperation, I took a chance and ran the rinse cycle in hopes of clearing the drain, and to my relief, it did. Well, sort of—instead of a pool of water at the bottom, there was a bed of soap suds. The odd thing was that I didn’t use any soap, yet soap suds filled the bottom, which eventually disappeared. Later, the water returned, and after a few more episodes of emptying the water and running the rinse cycle, the water finally drained for good. The mysterious soap suds remained but lessened to a residue, which made me think that the soap pod must not have dissolved and got lodged in the hose, which caused the water to back up. I switched to liquid soap and solved that mystery. The dishwasher is now a happy camper.
Jenni’s suggestions spurred me into action. When it was only not using the disposal, I could tolerate that, but when it came to the dishwasher pooling over, that became a high priority essential task. Since the two are connected, I took this warning to heart. I spent New Year’s Day shopping for a garbage disposal and calling Geek Squad. Remember earlier when I said, “Great timing”? Well, I wasn’t kidding. Jenni also suggested that I upgrade to more horsepower (HP) if I could, and guess what? The day I was shopping, there was one promotion on a garbage disposal, and it happened to be the larger horsepower one. If I bought my ½ HP disposal, it would have been $109, but the ¾ HP disposal, originally priced at $144, was only $119 for a limited time. For $10 more, I got more HP, a no brainer—sold!
As of yesterday, I am a happy camper with my new garbage disposal. How did I manage without this baby? Thinking back, I laughed because the year started with a broken garbage disposal and ended with the dishwasher problem that spurred me into action to replace the disposal finally. For almost a year, I sacrificed a modern convenience in my attempt not to add to the Covid-19 problem. But in the end, I was forced to take action and come full circle.