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So yesterday at about 11 a.m., after being up all night, I’m cranky, tired, and yawning for bed.  I go into the half bath to brush my teeth and wash my face.  I had turned off the fan and put the extension cord away days ago because the place where the leaky bit was is as dry as it’s going to get … oh, guess again.  As I stand at the sink reaching for my toothbrush, I hear a squirting noise. The maintenance guys promptly appear.  The water gets turned off, and plumbing things start to happen.

While I’ve got the head maintenance guy and short rotund Hispanic helper on the premises, I mention that as long as the water is turned off, now would be a good time to fix the drip in the cold water tap in my bathtub.  (Now both tap knobs have an “H” on them, and the right one is shiny new.  The other one isn’t.)

I also discover that an access panel was, in fact, ordered, but they sent him a mesh panel, which is not what he ordered, so he had to return it and get them to send him what he bought.

The apartment manager came over with them and she said that the lady in the downstairs apartment across the breezeway is moving out in August, she did not have any plumbing problems, and they would let me move in to that apartment when it becomes vacant, because they’re not going to be able to fix the plumbing in this apartment short of jack-hammering out the foundation and replacing the pipes in both my apartment and the apartment above, which can’t be done while someone’s living in it.  But, here’s the thing:  If I’m going to be moving to a new place to get away from plumbing problems, it should be a place that also doesn’t have a Thundering Herd of 4-year-old (or anybody else) living upstairs.  My rent is going to be going up $50 when they put the new windows in this September and I have to move all the furniture and everything within three feet of the window out of the way, as well as take down my drapes, so the window replacement guys can get to the windows — that is, if I’m still living here, because I also asked her what it would cost me to break my lease, and she said my lease is almost up . . . . Hmmmm . . .

They finally got the plumbing sorted at 4 p.m., I was dead on my feet — since by that time, I’d been up since 5 p.m. Tuesday . . .  crashed and burned . . . .

So, today when I went to my mom’s —  and after we played a brief round of *musical chairs — we had a little chat while we were waiting for my cousin from Capitan, NM to arrive and take us to lunch.  The upshot of our discussion is that I am now officially looking for new digs.  Preferably a duplex, if I can find one I can afford and that will take pets, and preferably some place with either a garage or covered parking, but an apartment would be OK, too, if there’s nothing above me but a roof.

Then my cousin came and we went to Red Lobster and pigged out, and had a nice visit with my cousin in the process, and about 3 o’clock, he headed back out to Capitan.  It’s only about a 4-1/2 hour drive.

He liked the concept of the cowl I made for his wife so much that he wants me to make him a man cowl — he never liked to wear a scarf because a horse could grab it and jerk it, or it could get tangled or caught in something, but a cowl is just like a turtle neck sweater but without the sweater.  No danglie bits, and you can pull it up over your nose.  So, when I got home this afternoon, I rummaged about in my yarn stash and found a nice soft yarn in black (to match his cowboy hat) and I’ll make him a cowl.  I think I have just enough.  Now if I can just hunt down my metal size 8 circular needles. . .

When I got ready to go back home, we had a line of thunderstorms moving into the area and I got rained on going home.  I got a “small stone” out of it, though, first one I’ve written in almost a year.  I need to get back in the habit.  Here ’tis:

“July had been doing a slow burn for weeks, when late this afternoon, the sulky, sun-bleached sky prestidigitated clouds from thin air, heaped them up into a line of portly, big-bosomed fin de siecle matrons in long grey skirts and wide-brimmed hats and sent them flouncing across the sky pitching hissy fits of steam-scented rain.  It  came hurtling down in huge drops that splatted when they hit, slapping against the skin hard enough to sting and drumming on the car roof like tennis shoes in a clothes dryer.”

That strange play of light that Edna St. Vincent Millay called “a yellow darkness, sinister of rain” always catches my eye during thunderstorm weather and recalls  sonnet XL to mind (from “The Harp Weaver and Other Poems”).  I’d say it was my favorite of hers, but picking a favorite from her poems is like trying to pick your favorite pearl from a large bowl full.

  • Since time immoral, or at least since the family moved into the house in 1962, my dad’s recliner was on the south side of the den and my mom’s was on the north side.  They had a pair of matching recliners and a pair of matching chairside tables.  (My mom is big on sets of things and things that match.) But  when my dad started having mobility issues, she sold his recliner and replaced it with a lift chair.   After he passed away, she sold the lift chair, mostly because she couldn’t bear to look at the empty chair, and put one of her other little rockers there. (She has a matching pair of them, too.)   About two weeks ago, she decided she wanted to switch her recliner over to my dad’s side so she could watch the birds in the back yard through the sliding glass door, so I came over and we switched her stuff to the other table — the phone, “her” lamp, the doorbell ringer, all her crossword stuff, the TV schedules and the “plongers”(remote controls) that control the TV and the cable box. Today, she decided that the glare through the sliding glass door was too annoying and we switched everything back. c’est tout.

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