Monday, September 26, 2005

H-E-Double Hockey Sticks Week

Let's see ... last night we ate a beautiful, soul-filling, gorging-ourselves steak dinner.  I had two glasses of wine with dinner, so when we got home, I promptly went to bed at around 9:30 and had what is probably going to be my last full nights' sleep for a while.  This morning I got Melanie up and she felt hot.  Yep ... a little fever (though you wouldn't know it, she's still her chipper happy self!)  I had cancelled her speech session (which had already been cancelled by her therapist, since she was flying in from NY --duh)  Before I could turn around the doorbell rings and it's the home inpsectors back for a re-inspection.  Ack ... they ask where the receipts are for all the work we had done.  HUH?  First of all, I didn't know you were coming today, I thought it was Thursday ... and hang on, can I get out of my pajamas and into some clothes??  Rush upstairs to pick up any dirty underwear or other objectionable items that may be on the bathroom floor.  Scramble around to find the handy man's phone number, where is it? ... call my realtor; she's at a golf tournament (huh?)  Call the realty office and the receptionist keeps calling me "Hon" and being very rude, so I am this close to tears.  No they don't have a number for the handy man, don't you know they all keep their own files???  Um, no, bite me!  Then I hear the inspection folks holler from the other room, "Oh, don't worry!  We don't need the receipts until closing!"  Oh gee, thanks.  For Pete's sake .. give a girl a break ... I haven't even brushed my teeth yet, much less had a cup of coffee.  I can't handle high blood pressure this early in the morning.

We did a lot over the weekend ... bought a new refrigerator (cool .. French door thing, with freezer on the bottom .. excellent!)  took down the swingset, packed the kitchen (good golly Moses I have a lot of useless junk!)  David started on the garage ... guess what we'll be doing tonight??  There's just so much stuff you can't do until the day you move ... It will happen ... this too shall pass ... maybe in between breakdowns I can get excited about my new house!! 

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Buy Me a Ticket for an Aeroplane ...

..."ain't got time to take a fast train ..." Got my sweetie back yesterday.  Poor guy was exhausted and still had to take Christian to baseball practice last night.  (Whose idea was it to practice on Friday night?  That's our going out dancing and partying night.)   It was a long week, for him and for us.  I did manage to pack up Lisa's room last night, all but the closet (which really should count as another room entirely!) and Melanie's closet, which is really the guest room.  Ack .. we have so much to do!  Isn't this just the most fascinating post???

Here are some really neat pictures from David's week in Northern California (near Reading).  Many people ask what David does for a living ... this will give you a glimpse.  His company invests in the paper and forest products industry, and he travels a lot looking at timber used as collateral.  This time he had a chance to get up close & personal with some spotted owls ... you know, the famous spotted owl that caused all the ruckus on the West Coast.  Enjoy!

The Mold Hunter is doing something to our new house where he will "suck" the air out of the house and then put "new" air in it.  Then he will re-test it to check for mold spores.  We are definitely going to buy a de-humidifier for the basement ...

Today we are having our family mug shot taken for the church directory. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The Plot Thickens

The closing on our new house is in two weeks (Sept. 27).  The closing on the old house is on the 30th.  Things are really picking up ... inspections, punch lists, repairmen, carpet men, mold inspections (welcome to the world of basements!).  Unfortunately the mold hunter (yeah, that's what he's called ... "crikey!  Look at those teeth!") found a spore of black mold in the basement of the new house, so we're working on what needs to be done to fix that.  There was also a trench under the carpet in the basement, so we were over there last night with the carpet guy who pulled up the rug and found a gap in the padding.  Filled it in, duct taped it, and we're done!  Quentin had never seen the new house; every time we looked at it, he was busy or gone.  Last night he got a look.  His words:  "Cool!"  He's thinking he has a pretty nifty bachelor pad down in that basement, complete with living room, bathroom and game room.  What a life.  Let's just hope it's mold free!

David is surfing out in California this week ... just kidding!  He's out there for meetings and timber cruising.  Today I think they were going to see some redwoods.  When I told someone he was going to be gone all week, they said, "For work?" and I said, "Jeepers, it'd BETTER be for work!!"  I did get the playroom packed and started on Lisa's room.  Once I get started, it's kind of satisfying to see the stack of boxes.  Making progress, making progress!

Melanie had a great day at preschool yesterday.  She really seems to thrive on it!  Christian's got a baseball game tonight ... sorry no pictures lately.  David swiped the camera and took it to CA with him.

Friday, September 9, 2005

Okay, okay ...

I've been chided for not blogging for a week.  In the words of the chick who used to work at Bob Newhart's Vermont Inn, "sorry, sorry sorry!"  I guess it's a combination of numbness over New Orleans, numbness at all the ^&#$@ I have to pack to move.  There were a few days this week when I was packing like a crazy woman.  Got the china done, some of the dining room, most of the books upstairs.  But then there were days when I was on the road (like yesterday, when we did a marathon at the dentist ... Lisa:  4 fillings and sealants, Christian: 1 filling).  I had to do my juggling act:  leave Lisa at dentist, take Melanie home, throw her into the bed, wait for Colin to come home, go back to dentist, sit while Christian gets drilled.  We no longer have a babysitter, as Kathleen has taken a job at an animal hospital.  Melanie's speech therapist is back, so we have started that again.

Went to see "The Constant Gardener" ... with my favorite actor, Ralph Fiennes.  Very good movie, disturbing, but good.  But I have to read the book now, because I didn't "get" some parts of it. 

Other than that, my dear Watson ... not much is going on in our little sphere of influence!

Friday, September 2, 2005

My God, My God ...

My last entry sounded a bit flippant, and I apologize.  There I was, worried about my mom and dad having a few limbs down in their yard ... and I sit, numb and aghast at what is going on in New Orleans.  I used to work for a law firm in Baton Rouge, in my single days, and took road trips to New Orleans often.  I would take I-10 until it curved around towards Slidell, then get off at Poydras, where you come down to a light next to the Superdome.  Then I would complete my job, at either the Federal Reserve, a few blocks on the right, or the Federal Courthouse, further down.  One time I walked into the crowd of people and media coming out of the courthouse during the trial of Edwin Edwards, the infamous former Louisiana governor.  At one point on Poydras, St. Charles Avenue crosses over it, with its trolley tracks, and you had to be careful not to stop on the tracks.  Driving down St. Charles was even more interesting, especially if you had to make a U-turn across the neutral ground, where the trolleys ran.  It was scary.

We used to drive down St. Charles and ooh and aah at all the beautiful houses, and imagine living there.  We would stand in line for 30 minutes to eat breakfast at the Camellia Grill at the end of St. Charles, where it met the levee.  My sister used to live in a beautiful yellow house on 8th street off of St. Charles.  My roommate in college was from New Orleans, and I spent many a time with her at her parents' house in the Garden District.

And now ... all those memories are just that ... memories.   I am wistful about all that, and I never even lived there, I was just a frequent visitor, even though I knew my way around the city like the back of my hand... think about how more devastated people are who actually lived there, like David.  I can't fathom what is happening in his mind, thinking about his hometown.  He saw a picture of the stadium at City Park, filled with water.  He used to run track there.

My sister also lived in Metairie, off of Bonnabel Avenue.  When I drove down from Baton Rouge to visit her, I would get off I-10 right where the "staging area" is right now ... the pictures of the 100's of people milling around there, waiting for -- something, anything -- make me sick at my stomach. 

And while I am sick, I am SO ANGRY.  Angry that these people have been stripped of their dignity, their humanity.  Not even a toilet to use, for God's sake!  Women giving BIRTH on the side of I-10, where I used to drive.  Elderly people DYING in lawn chairs, with not even a morgue to go to.  Babies with no water, much less food ... can you imagine the hell of not having anything to give your crying, dehydrated baby?  One woman was getting on a bus with her 2 year old.  She handed the baby to someone on the bus so she could get on.  Then someone pushed her out of the way.  The bus left with the baby, and now she has NO IDEA where her baby is.  Who is taking care of the baby? 

This is UNFORGIVABLE .. in this country, the world power, to which other people turn in times of tragedy.  The shoemaker's children truly have no shoes.  

Baton Rouge, where Mom and Dad and sister Debi, and niece Mariah live, is overrun with refugees who were fortunate enough to get there.  FEMA has its staging area there.  Such as it is ... I see on various news sources that there was NO FEMA presence in New Orleans ... only the local police who were so overcome they sat sobbing in their patrol cars at their inability to maintain any type of order. 

Where is the outrage?  Yes, The President can put all kinds of fundraising together, but the people in New Orleans don't want funds right now .. they just want OUT.  NOW, right this minute. 

And the looters?  Well, I can only chalk that up to human nature.  These poor people have been trod upon all their lives.  They have been reduced to an animal existance and they are angry, frustrated, outraged, delirious.  At first it pissed me off that they were stealing plasma TV's and then guns ... but that is the only power they understand.  The power of being armed.  People listen when they are armed, unlike any other time in their lives.  They are at the end of a rope and it is frayed.  They are irrational ... shooting at helicopters will get them nowhere, but what else can they do?  It's just lunacy ... insanity.  I keep hearing the voice of the guy who was reporting on the landing of the Hindenburg all those years ago ... "Oh the humanity!  The humanity!"