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A Fire, A Smashed Face, A New Sale

What a week! Sunday afternoon D. and I arrived back from a vacation week in Asheville with family and discovered major electrical issues at our home. No internet connectivity, so of course, no alarm, no tv, no music. When we got inside, we discovered a few tripped breaker switches and threw those back to on. OMG, lights and lamps starting flickering and flashing. Major appliances with electric panels were blinking off and on. We immediately smelled that sickening odor of something electrical burning. Pushing down panic, I called 911, explained to the operator that we did not think it was an emergency but would really feel better if the fire department would send someone to check things out. We threw switches off in the breaker box and began turning off all the lamps in the house (and those of you who know this house, know that’s a HUGE job—18 lamps in our dining and living rooms, foyer and library!).

A Decatur Fire and Rescue truck arrived very quickly. We told the firemen what was going on. They followed us to the breaker box and took a look. One of the guys went down in the basement and hollered that he thought he had identified the problem. A bare lightbulb hanging from a socket was shooting out flames. He unscrewed it. They recommended that we get an electrician out as soon as possible. We thanked them for coming out. They said we did the right thing and never hesitate to call. It made us feel better. Whew, possible disaster averted!

I wandered upstairs to begin unpacking our suitcases. As I neared the top, I saw a haze of smoke hanging in the upstairs hall and smelled that acrid electrical burning odor stronger than ever. Quickly looking around the bedroom, I saw nothing. As soon as I walked into our home office, I spotted the source of the smell and the smoke. The Belkin battery backup attached to our modem was on fire! It was quickly unplugged and the fire extinguished, but of course it left all kinds of questions in our minds about how safe our house was. What caused it to catch on fire? Were there other things plugged into outlets that might erupt in flames?

D. made a phone call to Mark Cooper, a neighbor and friend who has done lots of reno work for us. Mark came (on a Sunday!!), looked at the breaker box and called the one electrician he trusts to work on electricity in old houses. Unfortunately, he’d had a death in his family and was way backed up. But he recommended River City Electric.

Monday morning when D. talked with RCE, they asked if we had called Decatur Utilities. We had not-had not even thought of it. They recommended we do that and said they would get someone out to the house. A bit later, Taylor Lawrence, owner of RCE, showed up at the exact time as DU. Hooray! Progress! As we explained what had happened, Taylor and one of the DU guys said the same word at the same time. I think it was “feeder.” They all headed out to the back of the house where the electric line comes in off the pole.

Fried Squirrel, I Hope Their verdict? Some critter had fallen, jumped, done something to mess up the line coming into our house. DU had it fixed in 15 minutes. RCE repaired a few outlets in our garden shed that were zapped. We have since discovered several more in the kitchen that are not working so we'll be calling them back. Dang squirrel! It fried our microwave, clothes dryer electrical panel, Ring doorbell, a floor fan on the porch, a floor lamp in our office and about 30 light bulbs that had to be replaced. But! It could have been so much worse. The house could have burned to the ground, so we are very, very thankful that did not happen. Also in the process, we have found a great electrician! Many thanks to Decatur Fire and Rescue, DU and River City Electric! We are lucky to have you.

And what does all of that have to do with estate sales you might ask? Not a thing but a take away for you is that if you have electrical issues at your home, call DU first. As they told us, we pay for them in our monthly electric bill. They can identify the source of the problem, and if it is on the outside, they can fix it—for free! If you need an electrician. D. and I highly recommend River City Electric. When in doubt about fire, call Decatur Fire and Rescue. Better safe than sorry!

Watch Your Step!

It has been a tough week for two of the three DN&D ladies. Debbie was in Atlanta this week to take her darling grands (pictured picking flowers in her garden) to the Immersive Van Gogh exhibit. She stumbled over a curb and face-planted on a concrete sidewalk. It happened so fast she did not have time to put her arms out. Probably a good thing since she may have broken both wrists. Her face took the brunt of the fall. I am not posting a pic because (1) it is too painful to look at and (2) she would kill me! Prayers for a rapid recovery and quick healing would be much appreciated I know.

New Sale Coming Up!

With all that going on, we still did 3 consults this week and scheduled another for next week. Monday we will begin prepping for a new sale! This home is in the historic district in Athens, a great house with lots of wonderful furniture and smalls. This will be an excellent opportunity to give you an inside view of our process and how we get ready for a sale. We will show you “Before” pics which, in this particular house, are not bad. We have had some doozies in the past though! Sale dates are set for September 10-11, the weekend after Labor Day so mark your calendars. Deb will start posting pics to in a couple of weeks. Have a great weekend. Stay cool and hydrated. I hope you’ll stop by the blog next week.


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