As part of the construction taking place on the animal support hall, one of the new additions is a brand new quarantine room. Now that the new room is completed and we have everything moved in, the old quarantine room will be used as another computer room and quiet work area for all the keepers to use. This new computer room will come in handy for things like, well, writing blog posts, along with other work we do on the computer. Although we’re all pretty excited to be getting an additional computer and work area (especially one that is quiet), Sherry gave the keepers the option of re-painting the room before moving the new stuff in. None of the keepers wanted the task of painting the room… except me!
Now, I made it a point not to tell any of my co-workers prior to starting the paint job that I had never painted a room in my life. Other than staining my wooden fence at home, I only recall one time in my life actually “painting” something, and that was when I was about 6 years old and my dad let me take a few swipes with a paint brush on their bedroom wall while he was re-painting the house. To me, that counts… but probably not enough to do a whole room by myself. But I know how my sweet and loving co-workers are: they would have picked on me until they no longer found amusement in it anymore, which means I would have stopped finding amusement in it long before then. So I kept this knowledge to myself until I had already started painting. I figured by then it was a bit too late for them to do much teasing. But I do have to say, thank goodness for our new Lead Keeper, Aaron. He was one of the few I actually shared that information with later on, so he gave me advice whenever I needed it. He was a big help when I had questions about how to do something.
Anyway, back to the story. The room used to be a vibrant light blue, and since I was the one painting it I was told to make the choice of color. However, since all of us will be using the room, I found it only fair to make sure the other keepers liked the new color scheme. About half of us looked through a bunch of color samples and decided on two colors: red and grey. I didn’t really know what a two-tone room would entail when it came to painting, but I figured it out nonetheless.
Trying to find the time to paint amongst all of the regular keeper duties was my biggest challenge. That, and the amount of coats I had to put on the red walls to get an even color. But it’s finished after six days, including all the prep work, sanding, priming, four coats of red on two walls, and two coats of grey on the other two walls (I would have done a third coat for the grey, but I was ready to be done with it!) Although I had fun doing it, I can say that my thirst to paint has been quenched for a while.