Saturday, January 10, 2009

Just a quick update...

We spent all day packing stuff up and moving it into a RUBY'S rental truck (U-Haul in Issaquah) to transport it to a recently vacated space just on the east side of Graybeard's Gilman Antique Gallery. Thanks to our wonderful property manager, Bryan Briscoe, for allowing us to utilize this space for our "stuff" while we wait for the clean-up crew to rip up the soaked carpet and cut out at least two feet of drywall!

What a challenge! We had been planning a major overhaul in the shop -- remerchandising, repricing, refurbishing, all those "re" words -- but we had hoped it would be at our pace and not mandatory!

Please -- we all need your support now more than ever! Lombardi's Italian Restaurant will be closed for at least 10 days. Leathers is just about back to normal as is West Coast Armory. Casual Dining (Lee) is working so hard to get things back to normal, and is still open. Noel, the owner of Graybeard's Gilman Antique Gallery has worked non-stop since Wednesday and is open for business, despite all the work that is going on. And Sisters... you might have to climb over hoses and cords and deal with squishy floors -- but we are open as well! Again -- please shop us! We need you!

Sorry, no photos tonight. I just couldn't do it! We will be back tomorrow, hopefully early, moving and packing and more moving! Thank you for all of your support!


Just in case you haven’t heard yet…

We spent Wednesday afternoon and early evening bagging sand, laying heavy plastic down on the ground and up the walls/doors/windows about 4 feet. We layered 2-3 sandbags along the base to keep the plastic up so we wouldn’t flood if Issaquah Creek went over its banks. Most of us have been through these flood threats before and didn’t think we would actually flood. I kept checking the flood hotline for updates on the creek and it seemed to be okay. It wasn’t until my last call around 6:00 a.m. Thursday that I learned 7th Avenue, (the street behind the shop just to the west) had been closed. We came down an hour or so later to check things out. When we arrived at the entrance of Gilman Square, the parking lot was totally flooded and water was pouring out onto Gilman Blvd. A truck parked in front of Lombardi’s was up to its windows with water. From the street, we couldn’t tell if water had actually risen above the plastic and sandbags in front of our stores or not.

I think it was some time after 1:00 in the afternoon that I was finally able to get to the shop without water going over my knee-high boots. I looked through the window to find nearly a foot of water throughout the shop. Once I pulled back the plastic and moved sandbags I was able to open the front door. This unleashed a virtual river of water. As I stood there in disbelief, I grabbed a small suitcase, bowls with shells, a tray with butter pats, and Christmas ornaments as they floated by. Once the water was through flowing we were left with about 3 inches of standing water. We spent the afternoon using Shop Vacs to suck up all the water and started dragging out rugs and other items we could salvage.

The landlord brought in a company late Thursday afternoon that “cleans up” after disasters like this and assesses the damage to the building. They placed two huge dehumidifiers in the shop that pull the moisture out. It was about 6:00 or so when we had to quit for the day and let the machines start doing their jobs. As necessary, they will use professional equipment to pull out water as well. We do know that all carpeting has to be pulled up and replaced. If the drywall is badly damaged, they will cut it out and replace that as well. The company came back Friday morning to start work again.

We aren’t exactly “Business As Usual” but we are determined and have already started this major restoration project. There's more work than you can ever imagine!

SISTERS is having a flood sale -- everything in the shop is 25% - 75% off.