I will have you know that I am done - d. o. n. e. - installing Saltillo tile. I am not only "done" with the install but I am also "done" with Saltillo tile. Honestly, it's not something I would recommend you run out and do on your own unless you have an extraordinarily high level of patience. Or you like self-inflicted aggravation so you can complain about it to anyone who will listen. Saturday was the straw that almost broke the camel's back. I was so done with tiling. I had 40 square feet to do (a paltry amount I would have scoffed at as early as last week) and it was like running the last mile of a marathon. Not that anything really bad happened, I didn't wanna do it anymore and I just had some stupidly challenging area - a problem I created myself by not tiling the room in the same direction (should have kept going front to back instead of left to right half-way through) and now the back corner of the downstairs bedroom has kinda wonky grout lines. But I had mentally checked out of the process at that point and was not about to try to rectify the problem by pulling up the adjacent 30 square feet of tile. The desk will cover it. That's how over it I am with the tiling. I told my Inner Perfectionist to take a long walk of a short pier.
This morning I began the smelly process of cleaning the tile and grout with water and vinegar solution, letting it dry and then applying the final coats of sealer. At least this part does not try my patience like the saltillo tile that likes to be all different-sized just to screw with your head.
Which leads me to baseboards because, as of today, the wood flooring is still not hear ("hear". your say? What?), I mean here (man, that Ivy League education is really showing well) and if it doesn't arrive by Wednesday, I can forget laying it this weekend. Which means, I won't have it done until like the 20th of October because the in-laws are in town, and also because I am stuck compressing rubber manikin chests and learning about compound fractures all of next Saturday. Stuff I already know, but am required to relearn every year so that I can teach yoga. So, in case you're ever hanging out with me and go into cardiac arrest, if we have an AED nearby I will know how to use it. That is if my head doesn't explode during the crisis.
So baseboards. Do you know how long those things are? I mean, sure you can cut them, but, really, you don't want 40 million seams on every wall, so, ideally, you buy them at full length at the store and then cut them at install time. Except that full-length is sixteen feet. Sixteen Feet. Seriously, do you know how that makes transport a royal pain in the ass? I haven't even chosen which style and I'm already sweating how we're going to get them home. Even with renting the truck from The Depot, it's still a somewhat harrowing experience. For the last floor remodel I rented the HD truck, and my father and I loaded them up and we tried to tie them down best we could, but 16-feet? You end up with a large portion of the boards pointing straight up behind the truck cab and then the wind blows against them as you drive and you fear that you'll launch a 16-foot baseboard oncoming traffic. I drove very slow through very quiet side streets in the boondocks of my old town in the IE (Inland Empire) and I was still silently chanting some superstitious mantra to the baseboards to "stay put" as I watched them loll and bounce about. I could have them delivered via flatbed from the store but that's like $75. Seems like a lot to drive it about 3 miles down the road.
So yeah, I wish I could tell you that I worry about important things, but this is the crap I worry about. If you have any brilliant ideas about baseboard transport, please let me know. Maybe I am missing some industry standard way of dealing with this problem because every handy man can't have a huge flatbed truck at his disposal. Right?