Or, the reports of my death are only SLIGHTLY exaggerated.
This is one of two posts coming up. The second one will be my much-delayed sharing of Sam’s silliness. With some very interesting recent additions – yesterday. my wife met the guy who adopted Sam’s mother, and added some facts that helped explain some of Sam’s more bizarre behaviours. So stay tuned – I will definitely be back.
But now, to boldly go where I hope and PRAY I will never go again. The Week started out – well, we’ll be polite and say interestingly. My wife was a t work, I was here in the house, when a backhoe drives up and starts filling in my elaborate system of drainage ditches! (Frank can testify to their scale and scope.) Turns out “somebody” complained that I was flooding out the entire town. Since I’m aware of only ONE house immediately downhill of me that actually took water during the preceding rain, well, I won’t name names. But, “he’s only following orders”. Never a cool thing to tell a guy who specialises in German World War 2 History, but c’est la vie. After he finished, the township guy (closest thing to a zoning committee we have) shows up to check the work. I and another neighbour, Don, manage to convince the guy it wasn’t my ditch network causing the problem, but the eroding hillside of the house across the drive (the ones I have to share the drive with – the deadbeat renters). Township Guy says “he’ll look into it” – bureaucratise for “SEE ya, loser!”. Or so I thought.
Next day, Surly Guy shows up in a dump truck. (Oh, fer Gawd’s sake, WTF now?!?) Then, he tips out of the bed THE most bee-yoo-ti-full roll of black, perforated, corrugated drain hose 4″ in diameter! (Hey, as a homeowner, your sense of beauty gets warped.) He says he and Township Guy are going to fix my drainage problems. By the end of the day, they had replaced my filled-in ditch with the hose running all across the front of our house and halfway up the hill, all buried in gravel and now able to be driven over. WIN!
The next day, it rains. Some of the metal we cover our leaky outdoor basement doors with, were knocked askew. So the basement floods. BIG time. And so starts a several day battle with trying to drain the basement. It’s now ALMOST dry.
But just to make my life REALLY Hell, our beloved power utility decided to stage a blackout on Wednesday afternoon. When it’s 90 outside, AND raining. And the power stayed off until 8pm Thursday night. It was over 80 degrees inside, and the humidity made breathing nearly impossible. Fortunately, my wife’s boss at Wal-Mart is a saint,. and not only let me sit around the store for the day Thursday, but put me in a dis-used break room in the Employees Only area AND let me use their electricity to recharge all my batteries I ran dead Wednesday night. And to top it all off, our less-than-a-year-old mower blew up the preceding week. (It started smoking while my wife was using it. Problem? It’s ELECTRIC. When electricity starts making things smoke, RUN!) The mower was under warranty and a recall, so my wife’s boss filled out the paper work for a free replacement. THE store manager, the biggest of “Big Bosses”, has to approve the paperwork (this was before our blackout). Upon seeing it was for my wife, the store manager scratched out the line for “direct replacement” and filled in for the next model up – weighs half as much, is bigger, and costs MORE than double – for free.
So … I lost a ditch, gained a drain, filled AND emptied my basement several times, got heat exhaustion, got to play in the back of Wal-Mart, and smoked a mower and got a big upgrade. Did I win? Did I lost?
I survived. Barely. And after this past couple of weeks, that’s good enough for me. “May you live in interesting times”, goes an old Chinese curse. I hope to NEVER see such an interesting time again, EVER!