I have felt sad every time I pass the former First Baptist Church in Herkimer, because it was closed and the building for sale. It is such a lovely building, and I feared it would go to waste and ruin. I was delighted to hear that the Business and Professional Association of Herkimer had acquired it. It will be their headquarters and a multi-use space available for all sorts of groups and community events. However, the building needs a lot of work, and the association needs volunteers to help. Naturally, I said I would volunteer. Of course, I am not clever or capable about carpentry or anything like that. However, I don’t mind dirty, tedious jobs. I figured there would be something I could do. This morning, I did something, at least for a short time.
The first thing I had to do was sign a waiver, which I was happy to do. I understand that organizations can’t be too careful these days. I wandered into the church part (I’m not sure what that is called and Google was no help). I saw some nasty looking dark spots all along the walls.
“Is that mildew?” I asked. It was. I have a mildew allergy. Well, maybe it would not be too bad to stay for a while. I could leave before I actually started to wheeze.
It is, I fear, typical of me that I went into the basement to help. I knew the mildew would be worse in the damp basement, but, well, I said I would help with the dirty jobs and this definitely fit the bill. The area pictured above was covered with wet tiles that had fallen from the ceiling. Two guys and I gathered them up with shovels or gloved hands and stuffed them into garbage bags. We had to use the shovels to knock a few stunborn tiles off the ceiling. I know the guys did more than me. For one reason, I was flatly incapable of carrying the full bags up the stairs. But I helped.
Another room in the basement was even worse. I was starting to have a little trouble breathing so went upstairs.
Another volunteer was placing plastic to protect the carpet prior to squirting bleach onto the walls. I squirted some bleach. I was ready to apply some elbow grease, but the other lady suggested I just spread the bleach around and leave it to soak in. Yes, sometimes time is better than effort. That is the principle I apply when I leave my dishes to air dry.
Unfortunately, I soon realized my breathing was not getting any easier, despite a break of going outside for a few minutes. I had been there a little over a half hour, but there was no point in giving myself real problems. I told them I would come again another time and put in another half hour or more if I could. I like to think every little bit helps. Then I had the bright idea of going home and getting my Tablet to take a few pictures and make a blog post. I could help with a little publicity!
As you can see from the above picture, you can go to www.herkimerbpa.com for more information about the Business and Professional Association of Herkimer. You can also Like their Facebook page. And if I get to volunteer again, I’ll write another blog post.