What I learned from a burst pipe.

on January 8, 2014 in Ze Bloggy Goodness with 11 comments by

It’s cold in Nashville.

Like single digits cold and we do not know what to do with our lives except hole up and stay home and instagram pictures of a snowflake or a screenshot of the weather app saying “yes, world. It’s THIS COLD in Nashville.”

I’m going to tell this story short and sweet: at lunch time yesterday, a pipe burst in the apartment above me, causing four water hose like streams to pour through my ceiling into the two bathrooms and hallway. 

And here is what I learned:

–> I learned where to turn off the water in my home from the source in the basement. Of course, I learned that from my maintenance lady a few hours after the repair was finished because when I was PANICKING on the phone and she was trying to tell me where it was in the basement, I was like, “I DO NOT SEE IT I DO NOT SEE IT WHY AREN’T YOU HERE YET WATER IS POURING INTO MY HOME!!!!!”

–> I learned to value my abnormally bountiful collection of towels. Some might call it hoarding, I just believe that you can’t have too many towels in the guest bathroom closet. And let me tell you, when water is pouring rolling the hallway, you are grateful that you can build a sandbag wall of towels and hand towels and washcloths and beach towels to protect the living room.

–> I learned that when I find myself in an actual emergency, I do not have the where-with-all to take a picture to #latergram on the internet. Sorry. No visual proof, except the bags under my eyes and the buckling hardwoods.

–> I learned that every situation offers you a chance to see God working on your behalf. This whole thing could have been SO MUCH WORSE. What if we wouldn’t have been home? What if a pipe would have burst over my computer or bed or head? What if the hallway would have, as it did TWO WEEKS AGO, housed all my books and bookshelves? Instead, all that was in the hallway was a few boxes and a plastic bin of all my journals.

–> I learned that pipes can burst in the middle of the afternoon. Did NOT know this before 11:45am Tuesday.

–> I learned that to wash and dry every item made of terrycloth in my home takes three loads of laundry. Just to give you some perspective on the situation.

–> I learned that there is nary an annoying and frustrating moment in my life that I don’t think, “you know, I’m kinda glad this happened because it will make a GREAT blog post.”

You’re welcome, friends.

How’s the weather where you are?


  1. posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 4:45 AM  |  reply

    The weather where I am is cold but not nearly as cold as most of the US. And I’m dealing with a water leak myself at the moment. Thankfully no burst pipes but also no urgency from the maintenance people. Such is life overseas.

  2. posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 5:21 AM  |  reply

    Freezing cold, but not quite as cold as Nashville.
    The blog post thing? Yeah. I do that, too, even if I don’t have a single photo as proof. Stay warm and dry!

  3. Sara
    posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 8:31 AM  |  reply

    The storms have gone and the sun is shining in Edinburgh!

  4. Jenna
    posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 9:06 AM  |  reply

    aw, sad to hear about that mess. I can relate a bit. Not as much of a flood, but a tiny piece of plastic had come off of something inside the tank of my toilet so water was spilling out of the flusher handle thing. Finally got the water turned down (it wouldn’t actually turn off) and maintenance guy came at 1 am. So grateful to him and that it wasn’t something bigger but even more grateful to live in a place with maintenance people. Never owning a house. Ever.

  5. posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 9:52 AM  |  reply

    Love this whole post …especially the last point. Say that one often myself!!

  6. posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 10:01 AM  |  reply

    I enjoyed your list of lessons learned!

  7. Sam
    posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 10:07 AM  |  reply

    In Michigan the temperatures are below zero all day, there is enough snow to have an avalanche on a small hill (great for sledding without a sled by the way) and school has been cancelled for the past three days.

  8. Heather
    posted on Jan 08, 2014 at 1:35 PM  |  reply

    I feel for you Annie. I’ve had water problems in my basement before and it’s not fun.

    But I win so far on the cold front. Here in Manitoba, Canada it’s been -25 to -30 Celsius all week (and that doesn’t factor in the wind). If my (internet) conversion is accurate that’s -13 to -22 Fahrenheit. Crazy huh? And life actually carries on like normal for the most part. We just add more layers of clothing and drive more cautiously. It’s not fun, but such is the price of living up north 🙂

  9. posted on Jan 09, 2014 at 5:28 AM  |  reply

    This is great…not your situation but the post in general b/c I can TOTALLY relate. I sat reading and shaking my head thinking, “Yep, did that..been there”

    Last year our water heater burst. Didn’t know they could do that either. When it goes the granules inside SHOOT like a firecracker through the pipes and usually land in the tank of your toilet or rest in the water pipes…aka NOT GOOD!

    Ours pretty much went to the main floor toilet and the pressure caused the water spicket under the toilet to release….water flooding every where. (It was about 4PM on a weekday) I had just ran to pick up a child from school…gone 12 minutes??? I too thought what if I had been gone for hours???

    Used every beach towel, hand towel, etc….figured out how to turn water off…and laundry, laundry, laundry….

    It’s been very cold here in MN….been saying how thankful I am for cars starting and heaters heating our house. 😉

  10. Larissa
    posted on Jan 09, 2014 at 8:50 AM  |  reply

    Oh goodness! I would probably freak out too! It has been very cold here in KC as well! We have been really afraid about pipes bursting, but no trouble like that. And you can never have too many towels!

  11. Hillary
    posted on Jan 09, 2014 at 10:56 AM  |  reply

    Where I’m at (in Michigan) we’re finally, slowly coming out of a deep freeze. We had a low of -23 on Monday with wind chills of -46.

    I didn’t even try to leave the house even after my brother (in Colorado) suggested I step outside to just “see what that even feels like”. No thank you to that.

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