Living In Drywall Dust

In a former life, the Front Room was rather huge, at least 32′ 10″ x 13′ 3″ (L x W). In that former life, Nikki arranged furniture and decoration as to divide the space into a dinning room and a living room. So, given the larger space, there were two ‘separate’ rooms.

In an ‘open concept’, this is typical. And, with Nikki and the family living here, the arrangement was conducive to our lifestyle.

What we called the Front Room was actually the ‘Living Room’. We called it the Front room because it faced the front yard. You came into the house via the front door in the front room.

When Nikki left, the Front Room became empty. There was no furniture, no decorations. She left seven years ago and nothing has changed. Not her fault, I am not a interior decorator.

But now, things are starting to change.

Now, I divided the Front Room into two separate rooms with a 2×4 wall. There is now an Office that is 13′ 6″ x 9′ 6″. And now there is a reduced Front Room at 13′ 3″ x 19′ 4″.

The reason for the change is that for the last year, since March 2020, I have worked from home. Like a lot of other people, working from home has it challenges and I choose to meet that challenge by using my ‘home’ desk as my ‘work’ desk. For convenience, my home desk was in my bedroom. So, my bedroom became my ‘office’. That was ok for a while, it was a quick solution to the sudden you-need-to-work-from-home-now order. Thinking it was a temporary solution, I did not mind my office desk being three feet from my bed.

However, it seemed to be apparent that working from home was going to be for the long term and now I wanted something different. My mood and attitude was degrading. To combat the degrading attitude, I experimented by moving the ‘office’ desk into the ‘dinning room’. I bought a folding plastic banquet table from Amazon and set up my work computers on this table. This room has a large window. Orienting the desk so ambient light did not conflict with the computer monitor (unlike the bedroom configuration) was actually uplifting and comforting. I can open the window and hear the neighborhood sounds and look out to the sunlight and see the occasional bird fly by the window. It wasn’t dark and confining like the crowded bedroom so my mood began to change.

I became aware that I needed a division of ‘work’ and ‘living’ space. So, I put up a simple 2×4 wall to separate the ‘dinning room’ (which became the office) from the ‘front room’. It was a simple effort that is taking too long to accomplish. Of course, I do everything myself so the effort is amateuristic and probably not to Code. I am particular about finishing the drywall so it is taking longer than necessary to complete the project.

Sanding between each mud application is suspending drywall particulate in the home atmosphere. Even though I spend hours cleaning up after each sanding episode, the drywall dust is finding a home on every surface in the house, especially the work desk, which is in the middle of the ‘construction zone’.

Hopefully, the computers will survive the infiltration of drywall dust. I do the best to protect them but I still work and type and clip photos and develop web pages and revise service manuals within a haze of drywall dust.

Looking into my new office space. iPhone photo taken by Dave O on March 26, 2021.
Looking into my new office space. iPhone photo taken by Dave O on March 26, 2021.

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