July 02, 2007

Don't Take It for Granted

Water, that is. Have you ever given any thought to how much water you use? Waste? How often you turn on the faucet or let it run? How much water is used for cooking, bathing, cleaning? Neither had I until it became a precious commodity.

Got a very polite letter from the City advising me that I had an enormous amount of water usage and I might want to check with a plumber. Water usage! Check with a plumber!!! I'm now into my second full week at the house and haven't had access to all the water that has gone down the drain. Two city employees had checked through earlier and been advised of the problem. I was told that the city makes an adjustment once a year on the bill and to make sure I let them know. Will I ever.

Pipes are finally completed. Yippee, no turning water on and off. Nirvana. Sunday morning, Father's Day, my brother and I went to breakfast feeling pretty good about the world. We returned to find that another leak had sprung. Same area in the back, just farther down. Two depressed people sitting on the front. Don't want to call Mike; it is Father's Day. Turned off the water at the meter and sat in a funk. Who should pop up in the afternoon but Mike. Decides nothing to do but put in a new line from the meter to the house and cut off all ties to the galvanized pipe. Now, it is a long run from the meter to the house. Brother is not digging anything. Have to rent a trencher on Monday and buy more pipes. Brother was to have left today but decides to hang around until the water and gas problems are solved. Thank you, thank you.

Trencher is rented out and the new one is promised to someone else. Good grief. Received a call from Mike that evening that he has reserved the new trencher and we'll pick it up on Tuesday. Relief. Excavation begins in the front yard. Brother removes the bricks from the walkway so they won't be destroyed. Good thing. People don't treat your belongings or property as they would theirs. Long trenches dug. Code requires that pipes be buried a minimum of 18 inches. A lot of displacement in my yard. Mike is quick, however, and makes short work of connecting the pipes once the hard work of digging is completed. I should note that a lot of the work had to be done by hand because of the slope of the yard. Mike's son helped do the work around the meter. Mike advised me to let the city know that the water meter needed replacement and that he needed to be able to change the connecting knob. Made a note to do so first thing in the a.m.

Don't take relationships for granted, either. Family, friends, lovers. I started tearing up at the thought of my brother leaving. I knew it was going to happen; it was only a visit. Wednesday morning dawned with me wet-eyed. Time for breakfast and I don't want to go. I know I'm going to bawl and would rather do it when he's pulled away. Baby brother is not having it. They can be such a pain. Off to breakfast we go with me trying to keep a "stiff upper lip." Lasted until we ate and got to the parking lot. I cried as if there were no tomorrow and didn't want the hug to end. I cried driving away, leaving the water company, and at home. I was a big, weepy mess.

So what did I learn during his visit? He is more comical than I remember--where did he develop that? His love of music hasn't changed. I like country; he doesn't. He can carry a tune far better than I can; I'm jealous. Our thoughts are similar on a lot of issues. And, he is a skilled individual with many talents and abilities. We missed a lot of years as brother and sister and I'm thankful for the time we spent together.

For my most ardent reader, my son, I miss you , too. Thank you for checking on me with regularity. Know that I love you and pray for you daily. And, my special friend--thank you for the years we've shared and the constancy of your friendship. Love you, too.

Tears are rolling and I'm getting a headache. More later.

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