There are three staircases in the Red House.  The first, painted a lovely dirty brown with matching brown rubber treads, is the first staircase you see if you enter through the main door.

Since even the smallest projects in the Red House seem to take an enormous amount of time to complete (why is that?), I decided one afternoon to try to get  rid of the rubber treads.  This turned out to be a difficult and messy job.  Difficult because each tread was held in place by either numerous thumbtacks and/or nails.  I started pulling the thumbtacks out with a small spackling tool but sometimes the thumbtack was so embedded in the wood that only the top broke off.  Enlisting the help of the magic pliers, I was then able to pull out the remainder of the tack.  I collected the tacks, some of them still holding remnants of the rubber tread I had ripped off.  In the picture they have a tendency to look a bit turd-like.

The nails however, were the biggest problem. Some stairs (stair number six in particular) must have been the stair everyone tripped down because it had no fewer than nine (9!) nails holding the tread in place.  Try as I might, some of the nails refused to come out.  When Lynn got out his vise grip and tried to rip them out, he managed to rip out chunks of the stair at the same time.  Problem was they weren’t sticking out far enough that we could pound them in so we had to let them be.  Between us, it took us nearly an afternoon to get rid of the treads, the thumbtacks and most of the nails.

Luckily, this was the only staircase in the house that had this problem.  Staircase number 2 was simply painted ugly brown with equally ugly and horrendously pink walls! Staircase number 3 was your basic attic staircase.  Shall I mention that originally there was a fourth staircase in the kitchen?  This we assume had been for the help to come down from a very small bedroom right above the kitchen.  While the staircase is no longer there, there is a gaping hole (lovely!) where the stair had once been.  The one handrail that was left is now strangely suspended in mid-air.  I guess we’ll need to buy a really tall ladder to get rid of it.  



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