A Tale of Two Cities in Upstate NY

Under most circumstances I would never think to make a comparison between my business and a famous Charles Dickens novel but in this case it seems fitting. The opening line in Dickens’s famous novel, A Tale of Two Cities, starts with the words “It was the best of times it was the worst of times.”No truer words have ever been spoken, especially when coming from the mouth of a self employed general contractor.

As is the norm for most contractors here in the northeast, business slows down during the colder months, comes to a standstill during and after the holidays, then starts booming in the spring months. With the melting of the snow, the lengthening days and increased temperatures is when I see my business pick back up. Starting in early February I found myself back and forth between two different cities. Unlike in the Dickens novel, my story takes place in Wynantskill and Malta, not London and Paris. Starting in Wynantskill, I was working on what I like to refer to as a kitchen revival. There was nothing cosmetically wrong with the room, but it was in need of a makeover. The walls were soon decked out with a new fresh coat of paint, followed by two layers of vintage vinyl being torn up from the floor in preparation for a  13×13 porcelain tile that was due to arrive any day from the manufacturer. Seeing the opportunity to accommodate my other client while awaiting the tile delivery I started in Malta the following week. The work there consisted of a variety of jobs from tiling a front entry hallway, replacing linoleum flooring in the bathroom with new tile and some Sheetrock replacement. Even with a surprise snow storm thrown in the mix I was able to get done on time. After wrapping that up I went back to finish up the kitchen revival job. After a few short days the kitchen tile was done, and so was my time spent in Wynantskill. My heart felt a little heavy as I packed up my tools for the last time but I think it’s only natural to feel that way after devoting so much time in one space. Not only did the tile come out beautiful but it’s bound to be the main attraction when company comes calling.

The underlying theme to the novel I keep referring to is resurrection. Even though there’s not much of a comparison between my business and a classic novel, besides a catchy title of course, there is one recurring phrase, “Resurrected to Life,” that speaks to me.  With the changing of the seasons comes the resurrection and revival of my business. With my business comes the resurrection and revival of  one’s home. There’s nothing like taking a blank slate, or better yet, reviving and restoring a household that’s worn but well loved and making it fresh and new again, much like a writer using his words to take facts and weave them into a classic piece of literature.

The last few weeks have proven to be filled with endless prospects for myself and my business, with the weeks to come promising to be even more bountiful. Until we meet again it’s with a satisfied feeling that I end this blog with anticipation and excitement of what lies ahead.




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