On a Quiet Friday Evening

Quiet, peaceful. Listening to music. Sitting at the computer, knitting in my lap.

2017_02_03-03 2017_02_03-04The PussyHat is finished.  The pattern presumes you have a modicum of knitting skillz and a sense of adventure.  It turned out like I wanted it to, i.e., a seamless analog of the pattern posted on the web.  I am not a fan of k2, p2 ribbing.  It’s not as elastic or as “springy” as k1, p1 ribbing, and that’s what I’d change about it.  This was made with a cotton yarn.

I’ve got some more pink yarn  that’s acrylic and I may do another one in acrylic, but if I decide to do one with it, I think I want to drop down a couple sizes on the needle and do it on a US6(4.0 mm) size needle.  In order to do that, I’m going to need to get US6 circular needles in 16-inch and 32-inch lengths, which are not in the budget at the moment unless I decide to do some transcription work for that jive outfit in San Francisco next week . . . .

In the meantime, I’ve got a bajillion projects to finish.  A reader’s shrug I need to write the pattern for and make up, and have bought the yarn for.  There’s two cowls, two shawls to give away and a third shawl to finish for myself that I have out to work on, besides three drawers full of UFOs.  I feel a binge watch coming on.  I can’t start on the shrug until I finish one of the giveaway shawls because I need the US10(6.0 mm) 60-inch needle I’m using on it for the reader’s shrug.

The other day, I put what was left of the frozen ham from Christmas into the chopper and chopped it up fairly fine.  Put that in a bowl and added some chopped black olives, chopped white onions, and chopped Kosher dills and some mayo and made a nice cracker spread.  Ate the last of it earlier for lunch.  I really need to do up a package of elbow macaroni and do some Wolf Brand chili and elbows to use up the rest of the white onion I used part of for the ham spread.   I could also make up a batch of chicken salad while I was at it.  I could eat on that for days.  Think I might see if I can marshal the motivation to get up and do that.  Might take a bit of marshaling, because I’ve got to empty the dishwasher of clean dishes and put the stack of dirty dishes into it before I do anything.

Toward the end of the month, I need to start thinking about raking up the locust pods out of the back yard.  Toward the end of March I should maybe start watering so the grass can get going.  I also need to be thinking about the front bed and what I want to plant there.  I think the rose bushes that are already there are coming up in favor of some of those rose bushes that bloom all the time.  They are way less susceptible to black spot.  What I want is a bed full of low maintenance perennials that bloom a lot.  That bed only gets the morning half of a day’s sun and gets a lot of runoff from the roof whenever it rains, which is another consideration.  In the meantime, the bed needs some work and I still need some tools (pruners, spade, shovel, a bow saw) and some pavers for under the water spigots.  That tree in the back yard needs some work.  It’ll do me good to get outside and exercise, and yard work is nothing if not exercise . . .

The Status of the Quo Oпять*

This post is going to take forever to load, so while you’re waiting, pour yourself a beverage of choice, then kick back and Happy Valentine’s Day.

Moi? I’ve been keeping my head down, rereading the Foreigner books by C. J. Cherryh at a rapid clip. (I’ve just started Deceiver, which is #10 of 16, with #17 to be published in April — which is the purpose of the exercise.) But mostly, this week, I’ve been working (as in “earning money”), and popping Aleve like candy so I can sleep.  It’s going to take at least two weeks of hardly typing at all for my hands to settle down again, but needs must when the devil drives.  Baby needs to pay her car insurance. . .

I’ve been doing “general” transcription for that jive outfit in San Francisco.  The last job I did was an hour and 47 minutes of interview, which topped out at 54 pages.  Took me two days to do it, and I made a whopping $1.035 per page.  Because I couldn’t get it finished before 6 o’clock Saturday (the end of the pay period), I won’t get paid for it until Monday week (22nd) which means my car insurance payment will be a bit tardy.

My total output for the week is 92 typed pages since Monday (on top of 27 years of typing at a dead run for 5 days a week or more, on top of scarlet-fever-provoked autoimmune osteoarthritis of all my finger joints . . .)  And my mom can’t  understand why my hands hurt.  It doesn’t seem to bother me to type blog posts … (It’s the difference between typing maybe 1000-1500 words in a day at a leisurely pace versus 15-20 pages pedal-to-the-metal in a day. Duh!)

(And not just mindless copy typing, either. I have to listen to it first, and somewhere between my ears and my hands, spoken language has to be transmogrified into written language, then get capitalized, spelled and punctuated correctly before my fingers can do their little happy dance . . .  After a day of transcribing, the first page of reading is like shifting a rolling car into reverse without benefit of clutch. . .)

Never mind that I’m typing now, I’m just waiting for the Aleve to kick in, betimes listening to Rhapsody (and marveling at how seamlessly Alison Krauss’ and James Taylor’s voices blend).  Two of my favorite singers, singing that great old, crying in my beers song:

Didn’t go to knitting group this week because after 12 pages Monday and 15 on Tuesday, I wasn’t in the mood to use my hands for anything but holding a book and turning pages, and that rather gingerly.

Monday, I finally finished the fifth of Harveys Bristol Cream I bought last July.  Just belting it on back.  I’m going to work a little more next week so I can get myself another bottle, a little treat.  In the meantime that’s one empty bottle to start my bottle stash.

When I get six empty bottles, I’ll be able to make a batch of home-baked amaretto — once I can come up with the moolah to buy the ingredients, that is:  It takes a fifth of apricot brandy, a fifth of peach brandy, a quart of vodka, a big bottle of vanilla extract, a big bottle of almond extract, not to mention whole cloves, stick cinnamon, nutmeg, and six cups of brown sugar.  It also takes a really big pot and the better part of a day, but it’s a great way to stink up a house, and the recipe makes six fifths.  It ages wonderfully if you leave the spices in when you bottle it.

The musical selections included free of charge in this post for your delectation and amusement are all from a 240-song Rhapsody playlist entitled “Cache” wherein I have collected all my “greatest hits.” It ranges from Queen (Does your lead guitarist have a Ph.D. in astrophysics, hmmm?) to Richard Wagner (not that far a stretch actually, when measured in their respective distances over the top), from the Beachboys to Bette Midler, and from Herbie Hancock to Eleftheria Arvanitaki. Tunes that are all over the map genre-wise like a load of buckshot.

9 Chickweed LaneWhile we’re on the subject of music, this little gem from Brooke McEldowney.  Here’s one for the “I bet you didn’t know who actually wrote that,” for the hard core Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy crowd:

And other assorted goodies and what have you.  If you’re up to it (it makes me cry every damn time), you might check out this little beauty, as well.  Give yourself a Valentine’s treat that is nonalcoholic, nonfattening, and non-comedogenic, but which is not guaranteed to be non-habit-forming . . . just kick back and listen.


*опять – opyat, Russian, meaning “once again.”

Life’s Unanswered Questions

So, I was taking a break from transcribing this 1 hour and 12 minute magnum opus for Rev.com, that jive outfit I work for, since I don’t get enough from Social Security to live on, and I was working an Otto and Victoria puzzle that I made on Jigsaw Planet (Otto being Victoria’s pet octopus), and a stray thought drifted through: “Why do they call then tentacles if there are only 8 of them?”

Well, according to the interwebs, the word “tentacle” has nothing to do with numbers.  It comes from the Latin, tentaculum, from the verb tentare, meaning “to feel or to touch.”  Having been a medical transcriptionist for some 27 odd years (some of them odder than others), I’m familiar with a thing called a “tenaculum,” a medical instrument for holding things — from the Latin tenēre meaning “to hold, to keep,” so I felt there was bound to be a connection in there somewhere.  (BTW, in inflationary language, an enneapus has elevenicles.  I knew you’d want to know that.)

So my stray question was not, as it happened, one of life’s unanswered questions.  My favorite of life’s unanswered questions is, “Who built the Batcave (and what did they think they were building)?”

While we’re in an interrogatory vein, how is it that we managed to put a man on the moon before we figured out it would be a good idea to put wheels on luggage? Why is “bra” singular and “panties” plural?  If all is not lost, where is it?  Inquiring minds want to know.

Oh, and BTW, the next time you are beset by the Borg, remember:  Resistance is not futile. It’s voltage divided by current.


And lightning and THUNDER!!  We’ve had a right old gully washer a while ago.  There for a while, it was pouring down rain hard and fast, with little snibbits of hail.  (Thankfully we had no bigger hail than that — my beautiful new car is in uncovered parking!) It’s tapered off now, but it’s still rumbling thunder off in the distance.

Tonight is my last shift at work.   There wasn’t much work last night, but there is work tonight.  I’m really not very motivated to do it, however.

Tomorrow I have to get up early and go down to the VA clinic to turn in my mileage for my trip to Amarillo and get the results of my CT scan.  (One assumes that it turned up nothing seriously wrong.) Then I’ve got to be at mom’s at noon to take her to the airport.  One of the ladies she used to work with at the law firm and her husband have invited mom out to stay with them for a couple of days at the house they have out on some lake or other near Dallas.   Next month, mom goes on a chartered bus trip to Chicago with some church friends.  Did I mention my mom loves to travel?

In other news, my closet doors FINALLY got fixed.  The maintenance guy with the ponytail came and put new rollers and new tracks on them Friday afternoon and they work!  This next weekend, I am cleaning, sorting and rearranging the closet contents and will get my dining room table cleared off, as well as the top of the dresser in the office, which are piled with yarn and knitting projects. I’ll be giving the whole house a good clean as well, because reasons.

I’ve decided I’m going to be getting a new mobile phone either this month or next month.  Consumer Cellular has a very affordable talk-only plan. (I won’t text. . .)  The phone is inexpensive, comes with a wall charger, and you can get a car charger for not much extra.  I can’t get a car charger for the phone I have because they don’t sell chargers any more that have the gazinta that will fit it — so if my wall charger goes out, I can’t get another one of those either.

Earlier this evening, I called JT, the dear friend who has taken care of my cats for me all these years when I’ve needed to go out of town and told him the sad news.   He’s going to stop by this week to say goodbye to the white one, who will be crossing the Rainbow Bridge at the end of this coming week, and the grey one who will be crossing next month.  He is ongoing in the process of getting his house ready to sell, and has found a little rent house west and north of his current house that he loves, where he will be moving at some point in the near future.  I’ve got a bottle of blush and two Dos Equis Lager Especial beers in the refrigerator.  He can name his poison.

I’m supposed to get together with my BFF on Thursday.  I haven’t decided whether I will tell her about the white one before the fact or after.  Ditto the grey one.   She’s in a ticklish emotional state at the moment.  She cannot live on what she gets from Social Security either, and the part-time job she has does not allow her to be her usual ebullient self.  She works for an overtly “Christian” business.  They have a dress code which is very conservative and straight-laced, and as a “greeter” she’s only allowed to say certain things to customers.  She is not allowed to schmooze them, which is what she does best.   She has put an application in for the new J Jill store which is abuilding.  Such an establishment would be a much better fit for her than where she is now.   She has a talent for helping people find clothes in styles and colors that they look good in and in putting together outfits.  She really needs to be in a retail clothing situation. If wishes were horses . . .

Tough Decisions and Easy Ones

Did my taxes Wednesday and ended up owing the IRS money.  That jive transcription outfit I work for reports me as a “consultant” and reports my income on a 1099-MISC, which means I’m self employed as far as the IRS is concerned, and my exemptions do not cover more than a fourth of the self-employment tax.  I owed $134 in taxes on the pittance I made from them in the two and a fourth months I worked for them last year.  My exemptions only took care of $45 of it, so I ended up owing $89.  Not only that, I already owe over $140 in quarterly estimated taxes for this year, which is not counting the money I’ve made during this billing period, and the IRS penalize you if you don’t make quarterly payments on your tax liability.  The truth of the matter is, I just can’t afford to work for that outfit any more.  So, this is my last weekend to have to fool with that bunch.  I’m emailing them this evening to inform them I am resigning effective April 15th*, — appropriately.

That was the easy decision.  The hard decisions are coming up.  Last night, the white one was lying on the ottoman, and I scooted him over gently to make room for me to put my feet up beside him.  He decided I wanted him off the ottoman, which I didn’t actually, and got up to jump down.  But the leather on the ottoman is slick, his hind foot slid off the corner and he went sliding backwards off the ottoman.  He started floundering and plunging and lurching about like he had suddenly completely lost his equilibrium, and ended up crouched on the floor between my chair and the ottoman. It was frightening to see.  Then, he started shaking — shuddering, really — for several seconds to the point that I was actually worried that he was going to have a seizure.  He stayed right where he was for a few minutes, then got up and walked carefully to the other side of the ottoman, lay down on the floor for a good 20 minutes, then jumped up into the chair as if nothing was wrong.  He has been his usual querulous self since then, however, but it was a very concerning event.  He turns 16 in July, and he has become noticeably hard of hearing.  Noises that once spooked him, like me fluffing open a plastic trash bag or shaking the rattle can, he is now oblivious to.

His situation and the grey one’s are both becoming problematic right at a time when my finances are hitting a crunch again.  My mom has said she will help me with vet bills.  It costs about $50/£37 to have a cat put down and $150/£103 to have one cremated, which is what I want done.  I have the cremains of the other two I’ve lost,  I will want theirs, too.  All three of them.  I’m beginning to come to terms with the thought that that obnoxious little white boy, who is now an obnoxious little old man, is going to be crossing the rainbow bridge in the not too distant future, and that the grey one is not going to be all that far behind him.  It is a question of what I can afford coming first and, unfortunately, what’s best for them comes second.  What I want comes last of all.  I’ve had the white one for nearly 16 years, and he’s been very healthy and ornery for the vast majority of that time, with nothing seriously wrong with him healthwise, just minor this and that.

As much as I want to hold on to my baby girl grey kitty as long as I can, again, there comes the point where her quality of life outweighs what I want.  To have her renal function deteriorate as much as it has in three months is concerning, and tells me we’re getting to that point at a fairly rapid clip.  It’s going to hurt saying goodbye to my baby girl, but there it is.

Over and above everything else, my mom and I want to travel together.  Now that she has made it possible for me to have this nice new car that rides so comfortably, and that I am not afraid to take out on the highway, I want to take her places she wants to go, to visit relatives she had been unable to visit for the past five or six years what with my dad’s health issues and the difficulty, and ultimately the impossibility, of traveling with him. My mom will be 91 this September. Now that I won’t be having to keep to a work schedule, the only thing holding me back from traveling whenever mom wants to is getting someone in to care for the kitties.

Unfortunately, my dear friend who stayed with them this winter while we went to Pearland, is facing changes in his own life.  He is in the process of downsizing.  The house he and his late partner of 30 years shared is too big for one person and too full of heartbreaking memories of the love of his life who he lost so suddenly and without warning in 2012.  He told me in January that in February, he would begin sorting through things and selling or giving away all but what he needs for himself.  He would be getting his house ready to put on the market and as soon as he has sold it (if he hasn’t already), he will move to an apartment.  His ultimate plans are that at some point in the not too distant future, he will move to Florida.

The hard truth is that, even when I was working for that jive outfit, I couldn’t afford to board all three kitties.  Boarding the white one would have been problematic anyway as he tends to be hissy with strangers and will attempt to bite if he feels cornered.  The grey one is very skittish and strange people and unfamiliar surroundings would frighten and upset her. Boarding her would be downright unkind, which is why we so much appreciated that my friend was able to care for them in their familiar home surroundings.  The black kitty, however, never meets a stranger and it would not be all that hard on him to be boarded while my mom and I travel.  Petsmart boards pets in very nice clean surroundings at only $20 a day.

That’s where the matter stands.  I hate the choices I’m going to have to be making, but there’s nothing for it but to cowboy up and do it.   I think I may be saying goodbye to the white one before the end of the month, depending on how things go financially.  It’s going to be so, so hard, but there it is.

*April 15th is the deadline for filing income tax for 2014 tax year.

Monday, Monday

Having worked Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening, and chafed at the necessity of doing so puts a completely different face on Monday, when my time becomes my own again.  I deeply resent having to work, but the fact of the matter is, Social Security is not supporting me in the style to which I’m a customer.  On the other hand, I have now reached the age where I can make as much money as I want without having my Social Security benefits reduced.   Whee!

Speaking of work, in the Voice Recognition Software Strikes Again category, tonight’s winner is: “The patient’s daughter noticed some segmented urine.”  (sediment in the urine). Sometimes the things the software conjures up out of the mumbles in the background noise give my brain whiplash, for example:  “Fall with portable fracture.” (vertebral fracture).

In other news, mom and I went to Red Lobster for Easter Sunday lunch.  Church ran long, and it was almost 1 o’clock before we got to the restaurant.   I was sent inside to get us put on the list for a table while mom parked the car because even on “normal days” you usually have to wait 10-15 minutes or more for a table, and it takes forever to get your food.  This being a holiday, I walked in expecting a mob scene, and there was only one person in the lobby:  The  hostess (the employee in charge of seating customers). It was eerie.  We were seated immediately.  We had a salad, hand breaded shrimp and a baked potato.  We had hardly started on our salads when here came our entree.   It was like something out of the Twilight Zone.

I’m about to the point of calling the apartment manager and saying, “Just give me the track strip for the closet doors.  I’ll put it on myself.”   It’s a strip of metal that’s held to the top of the closet door opening with screws.  I have a cordless drill.  I can screw and unscrew screws.  It would take less than 10 minutes.  I’m going to take the doors down, take them outside and lean them up against the wall next to my door.  Maybe that will light a fire under them.  Still no dishwasher.  I’d be willing to bet they’ve installed it in another apartment to replace a broken dishwasher.  Sigh.


A Slow Sort of Sunday

Ran out of work repeatedly last night and crashed by 12:30.  Decided to read a while.  Started the latest in the Sebastian St. Cyr books (Kindle version), “turned” the last page, looked up at the clock and it was 7 a.m.  I should know better than to start a new book right at bedtime.  Put out the light, went to sleep. Woke up sneezing at 11 o’clock.  I should have taken my meds before I went to sleep.  Took them, then had to read for 30 minutes so I could eat something as I can’t eat for 30 minutes after my thyroid meds, but both the antibiotics and the N-acetylcysteine tend to provoke nausea when taken on an empty stomach.  Naturally, I started a new book while waiting, and was about halfway through it when it was time to get up for work.

It’s been the same again tonight.   Work is coming in dribbles and drops.  I sit at the computer, type frantically for about 10 or 20 minutes, then sit and knit for 20 to 35 minutes while waiting for more work.   They’ve all been short little reports, for the most part.

I need to start reading on my Kindle.  I have a bunch of books on there I need to read, but I’m rereading the Anne McCaffrey Pern books at the moment.  I’m going to knock off in about 30 minutes and go get some supper.

VR or DR?

The voice recognition software that the medical transcription company I work for uses can be more trouble than it’s worth.  It seems I spend more time sorting out what it thinks it heard than it would take me to just type the durn thing from scratch.  Then again, in all fairness, I have to consider what it has to work with — such as:  “Her syncopal episode (fainting spell) happened while she was sitting down, and got up, and the next thing she knew, she was on the ground unconscious.”  GIGO.


Springing Forward, Flying South

Tonight is the night we are supposed to “spring forward” and turn our clocks an hour ahead for Daylight Savings time.  I wish to goodness they’d leave the &%^#@*! clocks alone! DST is completely pointless.  It disrupts everybody’s circadian rhythms for no good reason, causes an increase in both traffic and workplace accidents due to lack of sleep, and its purported benefits of saving energy are bogus (it actually causes a rise in energy consumption).  Not only that, everybody hates it.  And, in the town I live in, where our stupid founding fathers laid the streets out in an east-west/north-south grid*, commuters who have to drive to work in an easterly direction (and home in a westerly direction) especially hate it.  Just about the time that the seasons work around to where the sun rises early enough or late enough that you don’t have to drive right into it to get to work, they change the stupid clocks . . .

Tonight, I wasn’t able to work after 10 p.m. owing to the fact that the servers that handle the dictation went down for maintenance from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.  As soon as I get this posted, I’m going to do the stupid clock dance and change every *&*^%$#! clock in the house ahead one hour, and then go to bed, because I have to get up at 6 o’clock to take mom to the airport so she can fly down to Pearland to attend her brother’s funeral Tuesday.  Her flight departs at 8:30, which means she has to be at the airport by 7:30 to check in and go through all the security rigamarole.  She has to change planes in Dallas both going and coming — at this late date, that was all that was available going into Houston Hobby, which is located, most conveniently, between Houston and Pearland, and is about 10 minutes from her niece’s house.  I’ll have to leave knitting group a little early to go pick mom her up when she comes back Tuesday.

*My town was founded in the horse-and-buggy era.  Since horses have “prey eyes” located on the sides of their heads(as opposed to “predator eyes” located on the front of the head), they don’t much care if they’re being driven directly into the setting or rising sun.  The stupidity of orienting half the streets in town along an east west axis was not “duh” obvious until the automobile era when for 2 hours a day, all the people driving in one direction on half the streets in the city are being blinded by the sun.

Fun and Games on a Friday Night

Owing to a perennial Social Security shortfall, I work from 3 p.m. to midnight Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays as a medical transcriptionist on the computer in my second bedroom.   Wednesday, I received an email from my boss telling everyone that we’re an MT short this weekend due to sickness, so when I got up, I had every intention of stepping up to the plate and working all night to help take up the slack.  Also, Friday and Saturday are the last two days of the pay period, and seeing as how I also have this knitting habit to support,  I wanted to make some hay while the sun was shining. . .

While I’m girdling my loins to go to work and taking care of business, guess what? My toilet runneth over!  I mean, totally full bowl (used, of course) overflowing all over the little mat that goes around the foot of the toilet, and all back behind it — with two cats up on the counter jonesing to drink out of the sink.  The first thing I have to do is chase the cats out and shut the bathroom door because given 1/100,000th of a chance, the white one would be right in the middle of the mess on the floor and would probably try to drink it.  Before I can pull the other mats out of the way, one is already halfway wet and water is still puddling so I sprint into the other room to get the “rag towels” — a couple of really old towels I keep for just such emergencies —  and throw them down to stem the tide.  I grab the cordless phone by my bed and call the poor maintenance guy to come snake the sewer line.   Again. 2015_02_26-04

Of course, between yesterday and today, we got about 3 inches of snow, the roads are a mess, they closed the apartment manager’s office and told everybody (maintenance guys included) not to come to work today and the on-call maintenance guy lives halfway across town.  It’s also colder than the proverbial wedge with a brutal wind into the bargain.  I’ve had to herd the kitties off into the bedroom area and put the screen across the hall doorway, because the drain snake has to be plugged in and this building has no outside plugs/points.  (Does it sound like I’ve been through this before?  Yep.)   It took the maintenance guy almost 20 minutes to get here.

In the meantime, I’ve booted up the computer, fired off one email to my boss to the effect that my toilet is backed up and has overflowed all over the floor, the maintenance guy will come snake the drain as soon as he can catch the dogs, harness them to the dog sled and mush over here, and I’ll be on working once the tumult and the shouting has died and the Captains and Kings have departed,* and a second email to the apartment manager which was, I thought, remarkably civil and restrained considering the circumstances.  While I’m waiting, I boot up the programs I’m going to need for work and check what’s in my work pool and nothing is due for at least six hours yet so I’m cool.

2015_02_26-01Anon, the maintenance man cometh, and knocks on the door, hands me the plug, and I plug it in to the electrical outlet in my washer/dryer area while he heads to the trap and starts feeding the drain snake down the trap.  Never mind that I have the drill down pat by now, we are both heavily invested in accomplishing the task at hand as quickly and efficiently as possible, because he’s out snaking a drain in subzero weather and has to kneel in the snow to do it, and I can’t completely shut the front door as there is an electrical cord in the way, and guess which way the wind is blowing!  Did I mention that this scenario has happened so often lately that the maintenance guys took the top off the drain trap and put it in their maintenance room and don’t even bother putting it back on any more because, guess why?   The people upstairs, the ones with the kids that are into indoor Parkour, cannot seem to be dissuaded from flushing baby wipes down the toilet and clogging up the durn sewer line.  But then, why should they stop?  It’s not their toilet running over, after all.  And since nobody can prove it’s them doing it . . . . (I have since learned that the two older children are her sister’s, and that they have two toddlers, and it’s the younger one, a little girl, oddly enough, that makes all the noise) . . .  my only hope is that they’ll get  Running Girl potty trained soon . . .

2015_02_26-02Speaking of toilets, the container of cat litter I already had in the house was less full than I thought it was and I’d used the last of it yesterday,  and since I’m already cold, I put on my hoodie and mush out to the parking lot to get a full container out of the trunk/boot of the car.  I know.  I should have made a second trip and brought in the the two containers I bought Wednesday night because I knew the weather was going to turn ugly, but I was led astray by a Sonic chili cheese coney dog with onions. . .

2015_02_27-04So now, I’m an hour late for work, cleaning the bathroom floor with Clorox cleaner with bleach, and I hear a BLOOP! BLOOP! that tells me progress has been made.   The maintenance guy rewinds the drain snake, I hand him the extension cord plug, and we are good to go.  I load up the washing machine with wet towels and all the mats from that bathroom, set the controls for “heavy duty” and “hot” and then settle in at the computer and get to work.   When the washing machine finished washing, I took the opportunity to break for some lunch (ravioli!). Since I don’t put my nonskid bath mats in the dryer because it eventually ruins the rubber backing and since I don’t have a clothes line any more (and it would be too durn cold to go out and stand in the snow to use it anyway), I have this nifty folding clothes rack.  They work just fine, and as much as the heater has been on this evening, we can use the extra humidity.

In other news, I have new 2015_02_26-05neighbors across the way who have young kids, and a honking great barbecue.  I wonder what they like to do when the weather’s warm?

Our predicted low tonight was revised to 14F/-10C.  When I looked at my weather widget a while ago, the temperature was 13F/-10.5C.  Supposed to have a high of 39F/3.8C tomorrow, but it’s supposed to get up to 60F/15.5C Sunday.

Of course, some of us had an easier time of it this evening than others . . . .2015_02_27-03