Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Meanwhile, in Another Part of Town...

Catalinas hidden by clouds, but little actual rain, Tuesday 1:30 PM.
It turns out that the clouds that made the Catalina Mountains so dramatic yesterday dropped a record amount of rain on other parts of Tucson.  According to an article in the Tucson Citizen,  it was the 10th wettest day ever recorded here, with 2.29 inches falling at the airport (a ten-year high), and much more than that elsewhere. The Santa Cruz River (which is usually mostly dry) crested at 14 1/2 feet at the Congress Street Bridge.  A couple hundred people were evacuated from their mobile homes, and flood damage was estimated at about a million dollars.

But along the Wilmot Road corridor, where I spend my days and nights, it mostly just sprinkled.  The extent of the flooding can be seen below, in a photo I took of a storm drain near St. Michael's.  It was really no big deal, except for the pretty mountains.

A St. Michael's storm drain.  No  big deal. 
Tonight, my dad phoned to make sure that we weren't flooded out of our home, and that I wasn't taking his call from a rowboat.  I told him that the only consequence of rain for us was a roof leak and a lot of digital photos. 

But we did have trouble with our roof today, not from dripping but from the bank, or, more accurately, from the underwriter on our refi.  It turns out that the appraiser recommended in his notes that the house get a mold certification, a roof certification, and a certification that we have a working furnace, permanently attached and continuously fueled!  Say what?  First of all, I was told just last week that the appraisal came through without any conditions attached.  Second, I can understand the roof thing.  I was afraid that would happen.  But mold, in the Arizona desert?  And now we have to pay to prove we have a furnace?  Come on!

Okay, the roof does need patching.  That's one of the things the refi was supposed to enable us to pay for.  Now, presumably, we have to pay before getting the money to do it.  Still I guess it's fair for the bank to insist that the property it will have an interest in have a good roof.

The mountains as seen from an intersection next to a nearby school.The mold thing, though.  That's not common around here.  Despite all my monsoon pictures, the truth is that it doesn't rain very often in the desert, and when it does, the water doesn't hang around very long.  (For example, the storm drain seen here had dried out by the end of the day.)  The lady at the bank had to do a lot of calling around to get a lead on anyone who does mold work, aside from one in Phoenix a hundred miles away.  I told her that with my severe allergies, I'd know if there was mold.  There isn't.  But that cuts no ice with the unseen underwriter.  We'll have to do it anyway. Based on his experience editing law books at his previous job, John says that it's because people are afraid of mold litigation, even though very few lawyers deal with such suits.  But who would be suing whom here?  We're not trying to sell the house.  We're only trying to fix it up a bit, and deal with our credit card debt at the same time.

Sunset tonight, from 22nd & Wilmot.But the condition that really galls us is the one about the furnace.  When the appraiser asked where the furnace was, I didn't know or remember the answer.  I only knew that it's a gas furnace, it works, and we don't use it much 'cause it's not needed.  After checking the hall closets, though, the appraiser gave up on finding the furnace.  If he'd gone up on the roof, he would have seen it, but he didn't do that.  He didn't even turn the thermostat up, to see if the heat came on.  No, he just marked us down for the extra expense of having someone else come out to climb on the roof, and say, "Yup.  They have a working furnace!"  Grrr.

Well, we'll cope.  I've left a message with a roofer that two people recommended as being inexpensive and reliable.  The lady at the bank is going to get back to me about the mold people, and I'm told that Southwest Gas will give me some names for the furnace thing if I call their 800 number.

Sunset at 35 mph.In other news, a nurse at Dr. L's office was unimpressed by my headache last night, since it improved as I hydrated myself.  She's going to get back to me about a skin condition I have, possibly with a referral to a dermatologist.   I've mentioned my three month battle with a red, rough, itchy left leg to a few of you.  Dr.L. thought it was folliculitis and prescribed an oral antibiotic, but I see no marked improvement after nine days.  I can almost imagine her saying now, "Then I don't know what it is." 

To get back to the weather issue for a moment, since I want an excuse to post a few more pictures, it didn't rain today, at least not in this part of town.  I took the last mountain picture above yesterday after work, in front of a local school.  Had I taken the picture today, the air would not have ben quite as clear, but it wasn't very cloudy, either.  You can see what clouds there were in these sunset pictures.  The last one I took at Safeway as usual, but the other one was part of an experiment, to see what kind of sunset photos I could capture from a car going 35 miles per hour.  No, I wasn't the one driving.


Another Safeway sunset.


ryanagi said...

I love that clear blue sky over the mountains...pretty...

jabarett said...

Mold may not be a big deal in Tuscon, but it is in other parts of the country. Insrance companies in Texas will no longer cover mold damage. Because you have a leaky roof, this is probably a reaction on the part of the mortgage company, which has to deal with refis on houses with mold issues elsewhere in the country. Yeah, it's stupid, but they're just covering their assets.