Thursday, February 07, 2008

A Soggy Saga

I’ve mentioned it before. I’m a damn lucky kid to have found the friends that I did in Los Angeles. At the top of that list are my "Melrose Mondays" peeps. Anne is the only one who blogs, but they’re all fantastic people, very different, but extremely close to my heart.

[As a side note, I’ve been damn lucky to find a similar group in my Hurricane Knitters here in Pittsburgh. But I digress …]

So the M&Ms picked a project for 2008. One big quilt, started by Person A, and rotated through the whole group of eight to finish at the end of the year. You saw the row for my quilt in progress

I’ll talk a little more about that on a different day.

So Carol is the person who volunteered to mail the project to me at each change. And when we started chatting via email and through other group members, it came to light that I was going to be in a bit of a bind. The first meeting was supposed to be on Monday (Feb. 11). Add in a couple of days for our friends at the USPS and I probably wouldn’t be able to get my hot little hands on my next row until Feb. 14. If I’m lucky.

The problem with that plan is that I leave town on Feb. 19. To go to LA, actually. And I essentially won’t be home until March 10. Which is the day of Meeting #2.

Since that Carol character is wonderful, she sent the fabrics and instructions for her quilt to me via Express Mail so I could get down to brass tacks as quickly as possible. Great!

Let’s back up a little bit. It was scheduled for Wednesday arrival. That’s yesterday. Yesterday’s weather in the ‘Burgh was intermittent torrential rain with brief pauses for a 60-second ray of sunshine every few hours. Then more torrential rain.

At about 2 pm yesterday (Wed), I was downstairs and figured the mail might have arrived, so I checked my mailbox. And found this

Ruh-Roh Shaggy! I didn’t take a pic of the envelope in the mailbox because I was in “Oh Shit!” mode. But perhaps this will give you an idea.

Apparently, we have a drip in the gutter immediately above the mailbox. It drips down the front porch light and onto the lid of the mailbox as it slopes down. Drip. Drip. Drip.

This is not a huge problem unless Mail Dude jams a 9x12 cardboard envelope into the box so almost half of it is sticking out. This makes the lid tilt BACKWARDS towards the seam and creates this problem

It's a little difficult to see, but Yep. That’s a good inch of standing water in the bottom of my mailbox. And the cardboard envelope was happily slurping up that water. Into the cardboard. And the fabric inside.

So forgive me for not taking a blog photo of “fabric squishy in water” but I panicked a little bit. And the envelope fell apart in my hands as I took it out.

Here’s the inside of the envelope after I removed the fabric. I didn’t tear it this way, it just kind of disintegrated like that.

And here’s the background fabric chillin’ on the sock drying rack in my basement

And the coordinates

At the end of the day, it’s all OK because the fabrics didn’t bleed or get cardboard-ey or otherwise ruined. And no, I can’t really toss them into the wash because I belong to a “don’t pre-wash” group of quilters (don’t be hatin’ it’s a personal choice and I don’t know that any of us have had serious issues. We use quilt-store quality fabric and it works for us.).

So let this be a message to all of us. Zippy bags are our friends. If you’re mailing anything that could be adversely affected by water, find an appropriately sized zippy bag of your choice and seal it up before you put it in the mail! This episode could have been Much worse, and I was lucky. I’m just glad it wasn’t my Yarn Nerd that arrived today! ::shudder:: And let’s not even mention that the “put envelope between storm door and real door” was less than two feet away from the mailbox. It’s not worth it.


Yvonne said...

WOW. That was a bit wet, wasn't it!? I love the colors...esp. the background color! Great choices. I'm from the prewash the fabric group...but that's how I learned!

SJ said...

Ugh. Don't you just love how lazy the mail carriers can be sometimes? I can understand at our place (because the mailbox is at the street, so he doesn't bother to even get out of his truck), but if your carrier is walking up to the mailbox anyway, would it kill him/her to just put the envelope in the door?

mehitabel said...

That Carol is something, all right! So are all your M&M peeps.
I personally hate working with pre-washed fabric, especially when it's the cheapo stuff that runs and torques out of shape. I just bite the bullet, buy the good stuff, and it's been happily ever after for a long time now!

Jess said...

how freakin irritating. I would be having a nice talk with my mailman. But thats me. Glad everything was okay. :)

Jenn said...

Zippy bags ARE our friends. Our mailman is usually good about putting things in the door, but one day last year, it must have been a different mailman who jammed a gigantic envelope full of ad layout sheets for me in the mailbox on a rainy, windy day. We finally had to take the mailbox off the house, take it inside and Tom held the mailbox while I tugged the envelope. I have no idea how the guy put it in the box. Maybe he jammed it in there with his foot.

MollyBeees said...

You were a lucky chick! That could have been disasterous. My favorite mail story is when the mailman took our wedding photos that said "photos-do not bend' all over them, folded them in half, creased them and left them in our box. Heavy sigh!

turtlegirl76 said...

Oh wow. Disaster averted. I was scared it was going to have bled all over. Actually at first i thought someone had stolen the contents! At least it's all there.