The kitchen sink in my dorm appartment has been clogging up for a while. The water would run off, but it was slow-going. Then, slower. And slower. Until yesterday, it was completely jammed.
A sink full of greasy water and floating pieces of tiny lunch scraps. I confess, this is not my favorite sight. But here it was, for me to see. What would I do?
I tried to let the water run off. I scooped some of it out and used a round of drain unclogger. But this only made the kitchen smell like chloric gas. I opened a window.
There was no way around it. I had to open up the drain. Luckily, the kichen has cheap PVC-pipes, so all I needed to do was unscrew them by hand. I looked for a container to catch the gunk. The regular pots were too small, the mop bucket was too big. Reluctantly, I reached for the blue, cast-iron pot. The one that is made for slow-cooking and such dished as Boef Burgungion. Well, no such noble purposes, now. I put it under the pipes and unscrewed the joints. Darkgray water spilled out into the pot. It smelled and looked like a mix of algae and mold. But the gunk itself was still stuck. It took several turns, the help of sticks, and a bit of elbow grease. But then, after about 10 minutes, the last slimy clot had dropped into the pot. I got rid of the dirty water and put the pipes back together. A test run confirmed: The flow was back!
The life lessons I take from this experience:
- Things don’t always clog right away. The gunk can build up over time, it can seem harmless, at first. Until it’s not.
- You can’t throw a quick fix at a deep issue. You need to get to the heart of the problem.
- Unclogging a blockage is not pretty. It can bring up old, long-forgotten secrets. Stuff you don’t want to see. It will even look like a worse mess than the clogged drain. But it’s the only way to clear the blockage.
- When the work is done and the flow is back, the joy is great. And you wonder why you waited so long to fix it.
I’ve been “unclogging” a lot of things in my life recently. I wasn’t depressed or in crisis, but I did find myself on an emotional rollercoaster more than once. I could get upset about that. But really, I’m not. Because it means that I’m getting the blockages out. And that the flow is returning to those areas. I prefer the flow to the hidden blockage. How about you?