Sunday, January 1, 2017

Twice in two days

Shoveling, that is. Though two days ago, the landlord and his sons did the hard part, which is to say the 3-5 feet where the plow fills the bottom of the driveway several feet deep with heavy, hard packed snow.

I went out to do that part first instead of last today, and then a nice man with a plow on his pickup truck stopped and cleared most of it for me in two passes. Jeez! That was AWESOME! Thank you, nice man!

I really don't want to buy a snowblower because a) it's almost as much work as shoveling, truly, b) it's big and heavy, c) it's expensive, d) I need and want and enjoy the exercise. But the plow truck really had me thinking about whether I might not want one of those. Can you put a plow on a Jeep Grand Cherokee?

One minute of research reveals that you can but it's kind of a bad idea because of the way they're built. Good to know!

Basically I want a great big pickup truck but with a roof on it, and not a cap, either--an inside that I can move around in. I wonder what that would be? I bet the local Ford dealership would be happy to help me with that question. When the time comes!

Meanwhile I just have to resist the constant pressure to go get a snow blower. Nobody likes to see a middle aged plump lady out shoveling snow, apparently! I will just have to get less plump so nobody worries so much, jeez. Right now I'm eating the rest of the Pecan Sandies that I bought in flipping August in preparation for No Stupid Food 2017.

We shall see how that goes. Stupid food includes anything from the snack aisle, as well as anything with wheat because I'm very sensitive to it, as well as anything with preservatives because I'm highly allergic to them. I know, I know. Pecan Sandies fail on all three counts! But I'm finishing them up anyway.

No Stupid Food should be a lot of work but also awesome. I do not want to eat stupid food! But then I get super hungry and irrational and eat things I shouldn't have, which also I shouldn't have bought in the first place, so there. Anyway my apocalypse pantry is full of cans of soup and things now, so I can always go to that stuff instead of putting a whole block of cheese in my mouth. (Cheese is not stupid. Cheese is glorious. But being immoderate about cheese is unwise.)

I just packed my suitcase in a manner that I have never even dreamed about before. Six tops, neatly rolled to fit exactly and stood up on end and in a row. Six long silky white shirts that I wear under the tops, neatly rolled and in a row. I broke the pattern and laid the pants out in the other third of my carryon, though. Maybe I should get back in there and roll them. It's so ridiculously neat and orderly and it's so easy to find everything! Madness! All my things so neatly arranged! It looks like Pinterest did my packing for me.

Don't remind me that I still have to get a sweater and a raincoat in there, though. My raincoat folds up super small. My sweater does not. Outside pockets of suitcase are still empty, however! All three! There is plenty of room still available. The inside isn't even full. I can bring my giant black watch plaid blanket scarf that I can't live without.

Anyway, the dishwasher is running, I've eaten almost every bit of the food and leftovers in the fridge, except the cheese and root veg, which will keep, and I've shoveled the driveway and packed my suitcase and even moved wallet things into my tiny old Etienne Aigner wallet on a string that I got at an outlet in the 80s. I'm really really working hard on traveling light, huh? No big bulky wallet even! I usually use one of those big ones that can hold a checkbook.

Even so, I will have to dump out new purse (black fake leather from Target) and take out the fifteen chapsticks and other crazy things that have no doubt wriggled into it already.

This is a war between "but I might need it!" and "there is no room." Also "but I might need it!" tends to come with imaginary scenarios where I desperately need that one thing and don't have it. If I had my way, I'd be bringing an inflatable raft and life jacket and crash helmet, in case of tsunami, you know.

Here is the official USGS document on how to survive a tsunami.

Basically it says to get to high ground immediately and stay there, and remember that there will be a whole series of waves, mostly likely, not just one.

I really hope we don't get earthquakes and tsunami while I'm sitting right on the Cascadia fault, but it could happen.

Business as usual in my anxious brain, huh?

I just heard that the utter jackass who was so awful to deal with all fall was a complete and utter jackass to a friend of mine this week, too, and so now people believe me, which is...nice? Awful for my friend, but vindicating for me, I suppose. This behavior, it's just completely rude and aware of the rudeness and unapologetic. Like a cartoon rude guy. Like an internet troll. From someone we have a professional relationship with, who should be much better than this.

I actually seriously wonder now whether he has a brain tumor or something. This behavior has to be kind of new or there's no way he'd still be employed. Though come to think of it, they totally did not believe me when I reported it, so who knows.

I remain so very grateful that I did not let either of the jackass twins touch my novel this fall. Sheesh!

Anyway we got all kinds of new info about school when we discovered that a huge email had not been forwarded from the University's email to our regular email, for either of us. Isn't that weird? I wonder why? It wasn't in junk or trash or anything, either. I think that's odd. But now I know that I'm staying in the hotel further from the ocean (thank goodness--TSUNAMI) and I get my own room, which is awesome. The school had asked whether I'd share, so I said I would if it was my one friend, but she wanted her own room too, so we get singles, yay!

Post-shoveling exercise stupor is holding me down pretty good right now. It's such a mellowing agent. Also the hot bubble bath that follows does not hurt. My job right now is to drink water (got that going) and make any last changes or additions to the novel draft before tomorrow. Wait, before Tuesday! It's due Tuesday, not tomorrow. Yessssss! I always want one more day. I guess everyone does!

There was the bluest sky this morning when I was shoveling! It was so bright out with all the snow and sun that I kept squinching my eyes shut involuntarily. I got totally pink in the face, from exertion as well as possibly from sunburn, at least it feels like that now. My dog is so beautiful!

It's supposed to snow again Tuesday, maybe, though the weather reports keep changing from rain to snow and back again, over and over. I don't have to shovel rain, but snow is much less messy.

Whoops, I just fell asleep sitting up in my armchair, ha ha. I might be a little bit tired out, eh?

Friday, December 30, 2016

I have to book

Did you have that as slang growing up? Book, as in: get out of here? Hurry, run off? Yes. Anyway every day I say to myself, "I have to book," but it means: go write that book.

It's not so much writing, which I find pretty fun and easy, but restructuring, which is sort of too big and like juggling with my brains. I am not good at it, for sure, even with outlines and things. Oh the complications!

Also I'm still weirdly resisting cutting out this dumb subplot that actually used to be the plot. Like, that was the whole plot. I guess that's why I'm resisting it. But it's maybe 75% gone so now there are just odd jaggedy shards of it poking up through the smooth soil.

I like to pretend that this novel was just especially complicated and mixed up. But probably every rewrite process is just like this. Shhhh, don't tell me.

I have a complete draft except for some patches that need to be inserted, and there's a cemetery scene I'm finding it very difficult to make myself write. I don't even know why. Funerals I have been to: many. Cemeteries I have been to for burials: few. Just my grandmother and one uncle, as far as I can remember. Unfortunately I'm extremely good at not remembering things I don't want to think about, but I'm pretty sure that's all.

I don't mind burials as much as funerals with open caskets, which are NOT COOL and give me the horrors for years afterward. I mean. I don't like seeing dead people at the best of times, but when they're all made up to look alive, that is super upsetting and awful. It was only one grandmother and one uncle I saw in open caskets and I did not appreciate it one bit.

Honestly, what is up with that? Is it so we believe they're really dead? I don't know. I think it's utterly  barbaric.

Anyway in this scene, which I have in my head perfectly well, it's all closed caskets and everything is as antiseptic and WASP-y as you could possibly want. Even though I suppose these people should be Catholic, come to think of it. I've never been to a Catholic funeral, though. Weddings, yes. Well, fine, they're long lapsed Catholics and just go to a funeral director and have a totally non-religious thing.

One thing I do know is that there's no sacrament involved once the person is already dead, so there you go. Unction is for the alive.

Hello, I'm exhausted! I've been working on Book all afternoon and evening. All morning I shoveled, then spent forever in a hot bubble bath reading a Meg Cabot book and drinking tea, then it was bookery all the way. Oh, I washed some dishes, too, while dinner cooked itself. This brain work wipes me out! Though also the heavy labor of shoveling wipes me out. According to my phone, I walked a mile and a half while doing it.

Your options are: stand and throw, or use the sliding scoop shovel. The scoop takes a lot of walking. I do that rather than, you know, get a heart attack and croak. No croaking!

I'm supremely out of shape after three semesters of school. I'm going to make it a huge priority to work out. Not today, because hello, the shoveling. And it's going to snow again tomorrow, whoopee! But after that.

Tomorrow is New Year's eve, which means herring in cream sauce and I don't know what else. I'm trying to clear out the fridge before my trip, so probably it means: all the leftovers. Mmm, I should roast my butternut squashes and potatoes and carrots. Yummy. And then freeze them so I have them when I get home. Excellent idea, me! Let's do that!

I really, really, really love roasted carrots, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes. The rest of it I can take or leave, but those three orange veggies, oh boy! SO GOOD.

I'm taking new meds as part of the regularly rotating pharmacopeia cornucopia where they try things, the things don't work, and then they try new things. Whee! Fun times. I'm back taking this as-needed medication that really improves quality of life tremendously. So I wish I'd been taking it all along. But it also zombies me out pretty good. I mean, in a good way. I do stuff? But I can also not do stuff? It's awesome. So that's two new things and the result is fantastic. I feel all normal and stuff.

I'm so tempted to cut my big floppy mop of hair before I go see all my friends, but I'm trying to grow it out, so that's contraindicated for sure. Do not do the thing that is the opposite of the thing you want to do! It's pretty goofy, though. But on the plus side, the pretty copper color really comes through when it gets longer.

My deadline for a complete draft of this book is Monday, so HUP HUP, seriously. I can write the dang funeral scene. And the missing bits. And I can figure out where the last two or three new pieces fit in. And if I'm brave enough and strong enough, I can go through and cut out those last shards of the old plot still sticking up through the substrate. I cut out at least 5000 words just this evening by doing that. Ugh! Ack! Ouch! But it's good. Remove the bad stuff, add in more good stuff. Get to where you need to be. Go go go!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Enter the finishing phase

Oh BOY do I have a hard time finishing projects. I dislike the finishing phase intensely. I don't even know why! Of course it should be good to finish things! What's not to like? But I find it exceedingly difficult and awful and unpleasant.

So that's what I get to do for the next two weeks, whoopee! Finishing a draft of the novel. I'm full of DREAD. I'm just having dread in general today, for no clear reason. Why??? We're entering a two week break starting tomorrow, in which my main (but not only) task is to get this novel finished and all the pieces put into order so that it's a completed (but not final) draft. I also have various and sundry other jobs to get done, but those are normal and not alarming to the depths of my soul like this apparently is.

I may also be getting sick. It's quite likely all of this comes from incipient illness. I can't get warm, even under an electric blanket turned up as high as it will go, even under quilts and blankets and wearing a half inch thick wool sweater. So let's blame all the doom and gloom on that! And the headache and the hurty eyes and everything. Yucky!

I ate all this leftover lasagna so it can't even be that I'm hungry, which is my usual thing to blame when I can't get warm. And I took the dog for a walk, so it's not that I've been sitting still too long, my other go-to thing to blame. Argh!

Anyway. I'm still waiting to hear about my grades for the semester, on December 19th, which makes me very grumpy. I even contacted them this morning to ask what was going on, since last year I heard on November 30th. They said they're putting them into the mail today. As for the content, I have no idea. We shall see.


I bought two things of printer ink so I can get the draft printed out. I'm still considering when it's best to do that. Before or after I figure out where to insert the new material I wrote this fall after my semester of torture finally ended? I don't know. Before? Because wherever it goes, obviously it doesn't go tacked on at the end, where it is now. I just kept adding the new material that I knew I needed, without trying to slot it in where it belonged.

This all makes me want to pull a stack of quilts over my head and expire quietly. I will not be starting until tomorrow, unless I get a surge of energy tonight. (Do not hold your breath.) Tonight I need to finish my niece's sweater, which is down to one cuff and a big wallaby pouch pocket over the tummy where you put both hands. Like on a pullover sweatshirt. What on earth is that called? See, I am not in the right mental space for writing. Because of how I'm too grumpy to function at all. Ha ha. Ooh.

When is Christmas even? Sunday, right?

Maybe I'll make a hot buttered rum next time I emerge from my cocoon of quilts and blankets and see if I can both cheer and warm myself up that way. It's impossible that I'm cold in this warm room under all these blankets and sweaters, but I am. I don't even see how anyone who ate all that lasagna can ever be cold again! Surely the fires of pasta and cheese would warm me from within!

Anyway. Maybe by this time tomorrow I will have accomplished major activity on the finishing front and I'll feel like a million bucks. It could happen! I had a triple flu shot, dammit! I should not even be able to catch the flu! But gosh, I kind of feel like I caught the flu. Noooooooooo!

Saturday, December 3, 2016

All decorated

Okay, not quite done--but I have to hem the kitchen curtains before I put them back up and can't hang those things until that is done.

But I got to do my favorite decorating thing, which is to put up the dangly twinkly lights and then decorate the lights with little blue ornaments, red apples, and silver bells, plus all of my usual Christmas tree ornaments saved up over the years.

I started doing this when I lived in my teeny apartment in Los Angeles. The lights went over the archway between the room and the closet. I said it was teeny!

Anyway doing all that made me very happy, plus I made pesto pizza and it was ridiculously good.

I also decorated my funny tree, which is like a scale model of a gigantic Douglas fir. I have teeny tiny ornaments that I use on that, like miniature ornaments. I love it!

What else did I get done today? I put the basketball hoop into the basement and did a ton of laundry and washed a mountain of dishes. Tested all of the Christmas lights. I seem to have many strings of green-wired lights that go on Christmas trees. Why didn't I get a real tree this year? Besides of course that I've been carless for two weeks. Carless, not careless!

Um, I feel like I did a lot more things than that, but can't figure out what they were. Oh, well, I put up tension rods for the curtains so I could put up the Christmas lights. That was quite a production.

I know, it's thrilling, isn't it?

Do you ever get a moderately rational but also irrational conviction about something? I totally do! I mean they're based in absolutely rational fact, but there's also an element of weird obsession out of nowhere. Isn't that annoying?

Anyway my latest one is a conviction that I'll have to go stay at my mom's house without her in it. Just in a sheer actuarial tables kind of way, it's reasonably likely. But as soon as I thought about it, I was suddenly alarmed at the idea of leaving my house, even though not a week ago I was adamant that I had to get out of here. Ugh, brain, must you? Could you not?

But I realized a new thing, which is: after a year, often you get to go month to month, which would be VERY handy if I needed to go take care of the house in PA and not pay rent while I was not living here. See what I mean?

Also I have this completely irrational terror that my job could disappear, even after two years and no indication of anything of the sort. Best to be able to scram in that case! Maine, man. There is no chance at all that I'd find a good job here. I had a horrible time even finding bad jobs and ended up unemployed and going hungry. I have bad memories of that time, dude.

So once again I'm utterly galvanized to get rid of anything extra and pack up anything that can be packed up. Oh BOY have I ever gotten rid of stuff this year, though. It's amazing. Amazing!

I can't get over the clothes situation. I've been buying J. Jill clothes in my size from Marden's, where the returns and seconds go to get sold for $10 instead of $90 or even more. Gorgeous! Beautiful clothes! Long silky t-shirts, long silk blouses, lovely deep colored long-sleeved t-shirts in heavy luscious fabrics, heavy silky long pants, sleek leggings, silk sweaters, cashmere sweaters. I am not even kidding. They're gigantic and absolutely gorgeous and they FIT ME. So I've gotten rid of all my usual stuff that doesn't even go on me anymore.

I know, so weird, right? Why keep many fezzes full of clothing that a) does not actually even fit me, and b) mostly came from Goodwill or similar sources. GONE.

And all the fabric, been chopping that all up. Other things, just sending them to Goodwill and really enjoying having them be gone FOREVER. I could do more, though. Must do more!

My car has been at the mechanic off and on for two weeks now and he still hasn't started on the thing, so Monday I plan to go swipe it back if he hasn't done anything to it by that point. I'll take it somewhere else. Boy is it annoying, when I was ready to get this done two weeks ago. Jeez.

Here's what I should be doing right now instead of typing things on the internet: knitting my niece's sweater! Making my sister's present! And then getting started on my nephew's sweater! Hup hup! I really seriously need to hurry up. I have the last season of Leverage on, where they're based out of Bridgeport Brewery, where I've actually been to drink beer! Yay! I love when tv and reality overlap!

I'm still in limbo about school, waiting to hear about this semester, which also tells me about next semester. I'm sure everything is fine but then also I'm worried that it isn't, but it'll be a few weeks before I hear for sure. Gaaah! Stressful!

Anyway aside from the crying, which seems to be happening at weird intervals and triggered by who knows what, like some cheerleaders on Leverage today, things are chugging along okay. Work! Writing! Oh, I got done with NaNoWriMo and that was awesome. I'm working super hard on finishing the book. Must finish the book! By the end of this year! Gooooooooo!!!!!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Sure, I can't see, but....

I might just need a new prescription. Surely I do! This one is very old, and so am I! Har har. It's true, though my trifocals are from 2013 and my eyes have gotten worse very rapidly. Well, as soon as my dang car gets fixed, I'll get working on that.

I have an appointment with the ophthalmologist for next week, because half the time my left eye is all blurry like there's vaseline on the camera lens, right? That's not just needing a new prescription. But I don't know whether the car will be done in time. Might have to reschedule.

Anyway, sure, I can't see, but I did just finish NaNoWriMo, woohoo!!! So awesome!

And this novel draft is nearly done. I am endlessly amazed at all the stuff that needed to get told that I didn't even know had happened. How did those two get busted up? What led to zooming off in opposite directions before our story even started? Now we know!

I feel like there's still a lot left to write, unfortunately. The last two chapters, at least. Oof. Well, maybe I can get that done next and next and next.

This is like the quilt thing, huh? Here's what I need to do:

--write chapters 19 and 20
--sort out all the extra stuff I just wrote and figure out where it goes
--create one linear document
--chop out the unnecessary plotline that V. told me to chop out last spring
--rewrite to smooth and coordinate everything so it all makes sense
--make it better
--better than that
--yep, more better still
--and more
--call it done! yay!

What a battle this thing has been! Whaaaaaaaa!

By far the most complicated and dysfunctional manuscript I've ever written or worked on or rewritten. I suspect that anything else will be a giant piece of delicious cake after this thing. Ecchh, get that cake away from me, I'm still full from all the sweet potato pancakes I made tonight!

Ooh. You should make this. I should make this! Remember this, future me!

Make mashed sweet potatoes with brown sugar, maple syrup, crystallized ginger, and butter.

Then make sweet potato pancakes with that. Except when it calls for milk, use heavy cream cut with water. Yep.

These pancakes were all thick and gloppy and pale orange and I did not really know for sure they would be good at all. But they turned out to be the BEST THINGS EVER. Oh my goodness gracious me.

I think there's a way to make waffles out of leftover mashed potatoes, too. But I'm not sure whether you have to turn them into batter the same way. I feel like maybe not? But I just went with the first sweet potato pancake recipe I came across. SO GOOD.

Also I think this demonstrates that actually taking my medications really improves the whole Enjoyment Of Life thing no end. Jeez! Also the Doing Stuff aspect. Oh and apparently the Writing Books thing, since I wrote like 5000 words tonight.

I left some things out of the new pill manager thing I bought last week for 99 cents. Some crucial things. Some things that would have made last week go much smoother. But since everything was so neat and official in its little boxes with the days of the week and am/pm, I didn't question it until today when I went to refill things. Whoops!

On the plus side, now I know those PTSD meds really work. Like, really really work well. I had some very bad days in there. It's nice to do a little controlled trial, I guess, huh? I thought I was taking everything I was supposed to be taking!

I also got to go back to work today, which makes me very happy, even if I did spend hours on the phone with the IT guy. He was like a dog after a rabbit, too. I wanted this one simple thing done, but he kept chasing after other stuff, to the point where I said more than once, "Can we please just fix X?" Jeebus. I actually took the dog for a walk and came back and he was still noodling around.

Ultimately it did get done. So there's that.

And I did call the animal control guy to see about those two huge dogs who keep chasing us and this other lady and her dog, too. They had us all four on the run today and growled at the other lady's dog, which was the last straw for me, so I called and the guy is going to check on the situation tomorrow. I don't know why DAILY TERROR wasn't the last straw, but hopefully now something will get done. Like, I don't know, tie up your dogs, or put up a fence, or get an invisible fence or something. Or put them inside the house, how about that?

The only day they haven't been out there was Thanksgiving day. We've been cutting our walks to every other or every third day, and then only going a block or two down the road, which is unfair and stupid. Of course it'll snow mountains any minute now and the point will be moot, but still!

I will most likely move this spring, when my lease is up. I need places to walk, dude! Non-busy streets! Quiet! Rent that is significantly lower! And stuff like that! Though I do like how new and clean and tight this house is, it also has no walls. No interior walls. I've never seen anything like it. I'd have to draw you a blueprint to illustrate, but the couch is against the only interior wall in the living room and kitchen, the one in the dining room is a hallway, and the only other one is in the office, where the daybed has it covered. Upstairs there's even less because of the low sloped eaves.

Moving, ugh. But on the other hand, if I get all those great things like places to walk, then that's good!

Anyway. I'm psyched to see bananaologist tomorrow (rescheduled due to meeting conflict Weds.) and drop off the car Weds. (also a conflict with both) and go to this shindig Thurs. Nothing like house arrest to make you appreciate going out! Now if the car could just please not self-destruct or implode tomorrow or en route to the mechanic Wednesday, that would be great.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Super great

It's one of those dumb days where I don't do anything and then get mad that I haven't done anything, and then I do absolutely everything but still feel like I've done nothing because of all the pre-existing sloth. Good times!

It's all because when I first took the dog out this morning, I tried to move the basketball hoop so the base could drain, which meant putting part of it up on the deck, except I kind of got it tangled up in the power line coming into the house and nearly knocked that down and, I don't know, gotten electrocuted or something, which would have been bad.

After that, stunned by my ineptitude, I flopped about on the couch for a while and watched Netflix during daylight hours, which is forbidden in my mind for some reason.

Then I was so grumpy that I started doing stuff just to prove how grumpy I was? Or something? I don't even know. There, I washed the dishes! See??? Like that.

--washed all the cooking pots and pans from Thanksgiving. Gross, dude, don't leave dishes around for three days.
--vacuumed and mopped the living room, kitchen, dining room.
--did some laundry.
--brought the gigantic heavy sewing table (the kind with sewing machine inside) downstairs.
--wrote my book for the day.
--knitted some more on niece's sweater.
--ate leftovers, like that's an accomplishment.
--drilled a hole in the base of the basketball hoop so it could finally drain properly.
--got out the socket set and lowered the hoop so I won't take out the electrical lines when I move it again.

I still have to get the whole giant unwieldy thing down into the basement. Well, down should happen more or less on its own. Up is another whole thing, though.

Thanksgiving was weird and dumb. I made all this food, and then I had no appetite at all, plus I was flipping exhausted for no reason. I ate little bits of everything to be polite--to myself, I guess? The animals really enjoyed the turkey that I gave them, though. Actually the turkey came out amazing. I have endless mountains of leftovers. Food has been making me kind of ill lately. Like turkey sandwiches, normally my favorite thing ever, keep making me nearly throw up. Go figure. 

It's pretty awesome to have the sewing table down here and in the living room. It's at the end of the couch and so now I can have beverages within easy reach, and can also sew in front of the tv. There is sewing I need to do!

Here is what needs to happen in sewing land:

--press the flannel quilt backing
--seam and flat fell the flannel quilt backing
--press open all the seams on the quilt top
--sandwich quilt top
--baste quilt together
--quilt the quilt together
--sew on the binding

Quilts clearly take far too much effort. Or too many steps, maybe. The pieces are all over there on the ironing board smirking at me and incidentally blocking the front door. Sheesh!

This house still suffers extremely from Nowhere To Put Stuff. Maybe this winter I can go on searches.

Right now I'm super cranky because I'm under car-repair-induced house arrest that is going to be going on for a LONG time.

This is how long: I took the car in last Monday to be assessed. Walked 5 miles to pick it up Wednesday. It's not safe to drive, so I have not been driving it, obviously. I'm supposed to take it back in next Wednesday, but the dude is always super way behind. Which means I am quite sure I won't have it back in time for my appointments on the 8th and 9th. I should just reschedule.

Anyway for those keeping track, that's nearly three weeks of no car in a place where nothing is within walking distance and there are no buses either, whee! I do have a bike, but the road is far too busy and dangerous to bike, even if there were anywhere close enough and safe enough to bike to. Yeah.

Luckily I have ten million years worth of supplies here, huh? I even bought 24 rolls of toilet paper on my last day out in the world, the day I picked up the car. I am all set, dude.

Christmas shopping makes me tense, but mainly because I have no brain. Obviously online is very easy and takes no car, but brain is essential. Where is brain? Brain seems to be AWOL.

Wouldn't it be nice if there were taxis or something? It's $40 each way with Uber and that's the cheapest way I've found. I'm just not going to do that.

Anyway. I put up my little Christmas tree and put up all the tiny ornaments. I love all the tiny iced gingerbread cookies and little sparkly clear toys, and all the little brass bells with red ribbons, and the miniature candy canes and cardinals smaller than your pinkie fingernail.

Must find Legolas to be my elf on the shelf. Heh.

So anyway after being so grumpy about not doing anything, I did a ton of things, but not the annoying ones lurking right in my line of sight. Also I'm still grumpy, naturally. What can you do? Watch more Leverage, knit niece's sweater some more, I guess? Keep on keeping on. Fake it until you fling it across the room?

Hang in there, you guys. Another six weeks of this to go. We can get through it! Oh jeez, and then I have to go to fricking school on a stupid plane, or two or three planes or whatever. UGH. With all those horrible advisors who were so awful to me and will be smirking about and trying to catch my eye. I have MAJOR DREAD. Not as bad as New York or anything. But major dread.

There is also a slight winter situation brewing. Last winter was exceptionally light on snow plus I was on the ocean, where it's even lighter. I shoveled what, four times? That's nothing. That's a week's worth of snow normally. This winter feels like it's coming for us like some giant juggernaut. I may need to go buy a snowblower at some point.

Until then, I'm going to (this is true) work out with my sledgehammer, moving it like a shovel full of heavy snow, so that I'm in better shape when the real snow comes down. I'm just having very vivid memories of months of snow up to your butt and shoveling over and over until there are mountains all around the driveway and nowhere to put it.

I did finish raking yesterday, though. Except for the last few oak leaf stragglers around the front edge of the yard. OCD says go rake them up! Maybe tomorrow. I'm not GOING anywhere, that's for sure. Grrrrrrumph.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The baritone oracle

I did walk to get my car! And it was five miles, which is more than 4.5, thanks very much iPhone maps!

I had it telling me the directions on the way there, which was very funny because of course it believed I was driving, so it kept on saying I'd be there in five minutes the entire time. In fact it took 1.5 hours and was very cold and tiring and I sweated a lot and now everything hurts except my knees.

That's actually quite awesome because I had all that physical therapy on my knees, and now they're pretty much my only body part that doesn't hurt. Mostly my lower back and hips and rib muscles hurt. And my neck. Oh and especially my feet and ankles. Anyway, that will pass.

I'm very psyched because I did it!

And I'm very annoyed that I discovered immediately after doing it that it's okay to walk along the power line cut, which would have made this walk about 1.5 miles at most. The power line cut goes essentially directly from here to there, cutting off the long loop around that I had to make. Maybe .2 miles away at each end, maybe less. Next time!

I stopped in to register my car at the town office after picking it up and asked the kid there about whether it's okay to walk on the power line cut and he said sure. Oh well! Also yay, my car is registered! What a weight off my mind! I always forget about it.

So I'm considering waiting until I'm away at school to get the car fixed and just not really going anywhere until then. That's because my one day without the car made me totally panicky, I'm not even kidding. Apparently I need to know I can get somewhere if I need to get somewhere!

Like what if I run out of carrots? Know what I mean? There is no store close enough to walk to. The closest gas station with a little mini mart store is four miles. The grocery store is seven. And it's not safe or sensible to walk on that road either direction.

Even in the wilds of Orrington and Hancock where I lived there were stores closer than that. Jeez, someone should open a little store near my house! Sell beer and frozen burritos and things like flour and sugar and bread and milk and soda. You'd make a mint. I wonder if it's zoned for that? Clearly there's a need!

Actually there's a place for sale with a decent sized parking lot not far from here.

The other consequence of The Epic Walk is that I've been utterly frozen ever since, with a new personal best/worst for low body temp, 96.2. Wow! I put that chilly self into a hot bath for a long time. But I find that rather worrying. I mean I came home and drank tea and changed into dry clothes and everything.

You're supposed to be able to exert yourself without succumbing to hypothermia in a warm house, it seems to me. I'm not sure what the problem is there.

Come to think of it, the doctor called and left a message this morning. I should probably go see what that is about.

Anyway the guy who was fixing my baritone called while I was out walking and so I went to pick up my horn after the town office, with a quick stop in the grocery store for lots of carrots (what is with my fixation with carrots?) and Kahlua and essentials like that. He and another guy were talking cars so I put forth my question: should I spend $2500 to fix a nine year old car?

We considered the question carefully. I did not pay for this car and have not put much money into it, so probably $3500 investment over time, which is extremely small. The other guy pointed out that if I went out to buy a car the same make and model and year as mine with no problems--basically the car I will have once I fix this one--it would cost me $8000. So it's much smarter to pay $2500 and get that car.

I am so glad I got to talk to those guys! I went in there fully intending to ask the instrument repair guy, because he knows a lot about it, but the other guy also seemed to have a lot of really good inside knowledge about the situation.

Today I will be creaking painfully about the house and saying "ow" with every movement, especially any time a foot hits the floor. I will also take my dog for a decent walk (ow) and hope his paw has healed up after three days with no walks. Poor guy! He went over and nosed his leash yesterday. Bawwwww! Sore paw! What a pair we are!

And I will totally make some of the Thanksgiving foods in advance, like the szechuan green beans and the cranberries and the mac and cheese and the pie. Yay!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving, except I guess Canadians yours was ages ago, whoops! Canada! Well, happy neighbor Thanksgiving to you and happy local Thanksgiving to the USA! Whee!