Our story so far: We had established we weren’t willing to tile our own shower in the old church we were renovating into our home, but we were going to take a bath on the project if we accepted some of the stratospheric contractors’ quotes we received.
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Then I experienced another one of those moments of serendipity that had been blessing us throughout this project.
I went to the post office to ask about whether we were the getting a mail box or post office box. I had already been there four times and had left without a clear answer.
As I was about to step into line, the man who held open the door for me motioned to let me in line before him.
“No, go ahead,” I said.
But he was a gentleman of the generation when etiquette demanded ladies first (let’s be honest, he looked to be my age). I accepted his offer.
I explained my problem to the man behind the counter, beginning with this description that had become familiar to my lips: “I bought the old Methodist church, and we’re turning it into our home.” Etc, etc.
During a pause in our conversation, the gentleman behind me asked, “You’re remodeling a church?”
“Yup, we are.” I smiled.
“Do you need any help?” he asked.
“Yes! You know anyone?”
“Yeah, me,” he said. “I’m a master carpenter. And I do other things.”
“Do you know any tilers?”
“Yes, I do tiling.”
“Do you have a card?”
He fished a card out of his pocket. By now I was ignoring the postal employee. I read the card, and an old Paul Simon song floated into my head.
“Al? Can I call you Al? Do you have time now? My husband is at the church. He handles all the contractors. You could go talk to him now.”
“Sure,” You-Can-Call-Me-Al said. “Where’s the church?”
And the polite gentleman went to the church, introduced himself to Tyler—You-Can-Call-Me-Al—and told him, yes, he could tile a shower for us, he did it all the time.
Meanwhile, I nailed down an answer on about our mail: We would be getting a box at the post office, not a mailbox.
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Tomorrow: We piece things together. Read about it here.