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Sunday, April 29, 2012

THE STRANGER





When this prompt appeared I immediately thought I would write some fiction. I haven't done that in a while and I'm a little bored with telling you all about me and my life,  though I do enjoy reliving moments in time thorough the written word. Then it occurred to me there was a "stranger" story I could tell and not the one I just told in "Oh What a Night". So with that being said, why not tell another Jo story.


We bought this little house in 1999 and it was perfect. Didn't need anything more than a coat of paint on the inside and new carpet. That lasted for a few years and then, as houses do, it began to ask for some repairs and some updates and one thing leads to another and before you know it, you have re-done most of the house. We re-did the downstairs, basement, because it wasn't finished at all and we wanted to use it as a family room. Roomy painted the walls, I painted the floor and we added a fireplace. Next a couple of years later, we added carpet to the kitchen and family room area. That we hired done. The we added a bedroom. That our son and Roomy did. They also created a tanning room for Roomy's tanning bed. He gets great relief from the warmth to his arthritic joints. I prefer the real sun.



At the completion of that job, Roomy advised me that he was done with remodeling of any sorts. He declared that we would be hiring someone else to do the fix-ups I deemed necessary henceforth.  So when the front porch began to pull away from our house, I deemed something needed to be done about that. I searched around for someone local that could do this and maybe some of that, at a reasonable price and would also be able to put up some new gutters while reattaching our front porch.  I would be searching for a stranger to entrust with my home and hoping that all future repairs might be done by the same person or company.


I selected a man named Ron. I had never met him. Didn't know anyone for whom he had done work. I learned later that our pool boy is friends with him, but didn't know that until after I hired him to attach the porch and put up gutters. His prices were moderate and he won my heart over at our first meeting. He knew his stuff and immediately detected that the porch was only the beginning of a much larger problem, on the first day of work. The roof had been re-done about 5 years prior and had a 10 year warranty. The boards on the front of the house, which Ron exposed in order to fix the porch, were rotted. Not rotting, rotted. There was nothing to which he could attach our new porch roof. He stopped working so that I could pursue the roofers and get that taken care of.


I won't go into the long story of how long it took to get my roof fixed correctly or how I had to see an attorney or any of the hours of talking and writing I did to get a well reputed company to stand behind their own warranty, but eventually I got a new roof, boards and shingles at no charge and they did an outstanding job.


Ron then finished his work on the porch and Roomy and I decided to have him also re-side the house in vinyl. It had aluminum and was looking pretty shabby. Then he added a vinyl railing to our deck. He also replaced a couple of windows we had no replaced yet.


We got to be great friends during these projects and I learned how truly versatile his skills are and again, long story short, this is "MY GUY". You know, the guy you call when things break or need updating or you get a brain storm? Just me? Okay, well, he's the one I call. 


This stranger has become almost family in that I really trust him, care about him, went through a divorce with him, lean on him, use him and would do anything I am capable of doing to make his life better. That name in the phone book became a stranger giving me an estimate and then became "MY GUY". 


Whenever anything needs done now that I think I can't do, Roomy will say, "Call Ron, he'll do it for ya."  And so far, he has.


This year, he will be building those new steps off the deck that we (read I) have determined we need. I think I have a couple other little things for him, too. Don't tell him though because I like to surprise him with these things when he comes to measure for materials and give me a price.
It keeps him on his toes and gives me a chance to decide if I really want those other things done or I just want MY GUY to hang around a bit more.


This whole story could have turned out much differently, but for me, this stranger was a treasure.


Jo

31 comments:

  1. Awesome Jo! First, I love your fiction but I love hearing abut you too! Second, it's awesome when strangers later become like family...glad you found 'your guy'

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    1. I know it's amazing! He is such a good man and he can do anything I swear!
      Thanks for the compliment, too! ♥

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  2. What a nice relationship, lucky you!

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  3. You're so lucky Jo. Sounds like your guy really knows his stuff.

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  4. I've so been looking for a "my guy", it sure could have turned out differently like your roofing did. I'm into using Angie's List now. Does your guy live near RI by chance?

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    1. The roofing guys are more the norm, I'm sorry to say. That is one reason I am so happy with MY GUY, he is such a find!
      Angie's List is useless here in this ares. I have visited and found no one in our area, so I gave up.
      He lives in Michigan, but who knows where this handsome, talented, single guy might decide to live next!?

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  5. We are in Michigan. Long commute for him. I know what a treasure he is. Good handymen are really rare and amazing friends are rare. So I am doubly blessed here. Thank you.

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  6. Wish I could find a Ron down here.

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    1. Ya never know, he's always saying Michigan is too cold for him in the winter...he could up and move anywhere anytime. I'll let ya know if he heads your way!

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  7. How very cool that he became your guy to get things done and someone you could depend on. Great post!!

    Kathy
    http://gigglingtruckerswife.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks Buddy...yep he's super duper delish! Nice to look at, too! I'll post some pics next time he's here to work.

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  8. LOL hey same name of the guy who doesn't care about feeding his ice cream to the dog!!!!! LOL

    I married a "ron"..Bill can fix anything!!!!! All i can say is Ron is fortunate to have met you!!!! :0) Nothing best in the world then feeling "like" family....especially if the rest of the world has walked out ((hugs)) Jo you have a gift..we are all so blessed to know you

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    1. See? All Ron's are good guys!
      I married a Ron, too, but he got old and tired and doesn't want to do that anymore! So...I hired one.
      Thank you Brenda, not sure what my gift is yet, but I'm pretty sure I have one! LOL
      Now blessings...you would be one of those. ♥

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  9. Love that The Stranger became a go-to guy, almost a member of the family. Too cool.

    And I like that your roof is fixed. :-)

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    1. I love that, too. He's a good friend and a great handyman! Not an overabundance of those in my real family. lol

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  10. It's good to have a go-to guy!

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    1. Isn't it though? AND he leaves when the job is done!! ha ha ha ♥

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  11. Nice story, Jo! My sister was recently divorced, bought her own little house and needed lots of work done to it. She found a MY GUY! Yay! She just calls her guy when she needs something done. He does a great job too. So nice to have someone you can count on! I would say you lucked out, Jo! ;)

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    1. Good for your sis and me, too! Yep, I can't imagine life now without MY GUY, he just doesn't do things TODAY like I would like, but when he gets here, he does a great job. ♥

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  12. Not often that a stranger comes into your life through circumstances like that and stays! And to find a GOOD contractor? God love him that he's both to you! NEVER let "YOUR GUY" go - sounds like he's priceless!

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    1. Yeppers! He's a keeper. The only way I'll lose him if he moves away, I'm not following him! ♥

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  13. That's cheatin' Ron's no stranger, he knows your house inside out and backward! ;-)

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  14. Thanks for sharing Your Guy - definitely a super guy and a keeper.

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    1. He is and it was my pleasure to spotlight a really good man. ♥

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  15. well, jo.. i bet you had a hand in the reason he's stuck around.... i am sure he enjoys your company just as we all do... nice story.... :)

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    1. I imagine he likes my checkbook, too! Maybe he kinda likes me now, he is sending his 'associate' to measure and probably build my steps because he is recovering from a self-inflicted head wound and he wants my steps done. He didn't have to do that, I would have waited, but his 'associate' needs to be working, so I said, okay.
      Thank you. ♥

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  16. I need a stranger just like that to do all the jobs I need doing around my house!

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    1. I think everyone does! but dang they're hard to find! ♥

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