Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Crosby House

We live in a fairly old house. Not old like Ancient Rome, but old for USA standards. When I dragged out the title from our "important papers" file, I noticed that the first warranty deed was issued in 1811. More than a hundred years later,  in 1927,  it appears that William and Emma Crosby had some searches done with the WNY water company and NY telephone and General Electric. So, I'm guessing that's about when the house was built.

Here's the crazy thing: we live on Crosby Blvd - obviously named for the owners William and Emma.  And that's the name of our kids!! Kind of creepy, don't you think? We moved in here 2 weeks before Will was born. And, we didn't name him after William Crosby - we named him after my husband. Of course. And this was done over my protests. I thought it was a bad, bad idea to have 2 people in a four person family with the same damn name. Kind of confusing, don't you think? But, Bill prevailed and it appears, so did Mr. Crosby. Anyway, that means that this May it will be 19 years we lived in this house. I can't believe it. When I was a kid,  we never stayed in a place longer that 7 years. And, no we weren't on the lam. We raised them (HA!)

I used to run in the Forest Lawn Cemetery (for exercise -  not to evade the law)  and one day ran into the headstones of William and Emma Crosby - side by side for eternity. When I found those headstones I felt a strange sense of peace. I still get the feeling that they are looking out for us.

Anyway, old houses suit me. I like the way they feel. I like the history and comfort they exude. The last 19 years in this house have been very, very happy. I feel lucky to live here and to have been able to bring up the kids in this house. But, this house, like all old houses has drawbacks. And, if you are an unskilled laborer like me, it's important to have a cadre of skilled workers in your contacts lists to help you.  If I think I can fix it myself, I call Bruce. He's my go-to, know-it-all friend (who thinks of me as a 25 year old). If I know it's beyond me, I call Adam. Adam is a professional. He lives nearby and his company renovated our kitchen one summer. He is, in a word, a gem. I trust him so much that, even though the kitchen has been done for 5 years, he still has a key to our house. On a key chain that Emma made.

I called Adam last night because our boiler was hot but, it wasn't pushing any heat into the house.  I kept thinking it would miraculously cure itself...but no. I should know better. It is currently 32 degrees outside - and about 60 degrees in the house. Luckily, the bulk of our day is spent at work. And I have a lot of fleece. But my fingers are pretty cold typing this blog.

Adam came by this morning while I was at work, figured out the problem, ordered the part and will be back tomorrow to install it. Like I said... a gem.

I have included a picture of our boiler just so you know the complexity of the thing. I believe there are 6 zones. This thing has it's own room that is shares with the hot water tank. Some day that boiler will crash - or Adam won't be able to coax it back to life. In the meantime, I will continue to oil it 3 times a year and check the pressure gauge. I figure, with Adam's earthly assistance and Emma and Will Crosby's heavenly intervention, I can figure out a way to get this boiler to last a few more years.

1 comment:

  1. This is touching and sweet. Thanks for sharing.