July 30, 2007

What Can I Say?

No updates does not equate no news--good, bad, or otherwise. Just means that I've been too busy, disgusted, or tired to sit at the computer. And, let me state unequivocally that it is hotter than h-e- double toothpicks down here and even more so in that little room, which just happens to be the size of the middle bedroom in DC, where I have the computer.

Well what happened to that cute ceiling fan you stumbled up on, Missy? Just the beginning of a week of worry and trouble. Made those wonderfully cheap arrangements to have all that electrical work done, didn't you? Thrilled about the savings, weren't you? No question. Until the electrician went up into the attic and came back with terribly bad news. Is anyone surprised? Outdated electrical connections; bare, exposed wiring; burned out transformers, and the list goes on. Oh, and let's not forget the hastily and improperly installed motion detector in the garage. Just burn me down, why don't you? Sheez!

It seems that the majority of the house is knob and tubing. Rather than try to describe it, I've put a link here that gives an explanation and why it must be replaced.
Yep, describes Serendipity quite well. Blown insulation, no heat caps or whatever you want to call them around the lighting fixtures. Numerous wires running to individual breakers. And, here I come with microwaves, computers, freezers, etc. Good golly, Miss Molly! Can anybody say--mo' money? That's right. The price tag immediately increased just to get two lights, one of which was the ceiling fan, wired correctly and working. The price tag to get the wiring right? More than I have or want to think about. But still cheaper than DC.

So what about the ceiling fan? After all the trouble of running new wiring to that room, the ceiling fan didn't have the base plate necessary to attach it to the ceiling. Give me a break! Call to the furniture store; they don't know whether it was included or not. That will not work. So, put back up the existing fixture, which works just fine now, and take the fan back on the next trip to that area. I'll just use the desk fan I had on my desk at work. Anything for some air!

Can't get one room finished to save my life! Up the ladder, down the ladder. Open a box, move a box, toss a box. Start. Stop. Are you making any headway? Doesn't look like it but if a box goes out for trash something was done. And, am I worried about the electricity? You bet your sweet bippy! I'm afraid to turn on lights, use the wet saw, and I'm afraid of the circular saw anyway but definitely afraid to use it now.

SF came in on Wednesday. Thank you. I needed the respite. Serious self-doubting going on. Did I make a mistake? Was I stupid? No support system, yada yada. Really doesn't matter; in for a penny, in for a pound. Make lemonade, stiff upper chin, and all that. DO NOT burst into tears when he walks into the airport. Yeah--major doubts. And, I really wanted more than one room finished; i.e., no boxes, painted, livable. Didn't happen.

Out to the airport early Wednesday a.m. Overslept, just like I thought I would. Must be something to that subliminal thought process. Woke at 2 a.m. Should have gotten up and kept moving but, nooo, went back to sleep. Instead of leaving at 6:30 a.m., I was just waking up. Flight due at 8:30. No being saved by the bell, this time. Rush hour traffic on the freeway around Memphis; big rig crashed on I-40. The Mad Hatter: "I'm Late, I'm late, for a very important date." He's patiently waiting outside Northwestern's doors when I pull up. No recriminations. My reputation precedes me.

Back to the "Big Rip," filling him in along the way. Water in the gas can and my suspicions as to how it got there. Stop at Emily's, another sit-down restaurant in Ripley, but casual. There are no formal dining spots, here. Miss Mae is one of the owners. And, then to the house. SF is not a happy camper; not enough progress. I get maybe an hour or two before it is time to rearrange the living room the way it should be, pictures hung, etc. Does it look great, or what? He does have that special touch.

Last Sunday, while Mikey was cutting boards for my shelves, I had an unexpected visitor--Mrs. Beaulean Matthews--who was on her way to the meeting of the historical society at the library, saw me in the yard and decided to introduce herself. Well, thank you very much. Seems she works for the Bank of Ripley and my good friend, Jim Fitzhugh, chairman, told her that I had made the purchase and was going to take my time in fixing it up. What a joke; I'll be dead AND in debtor's prison before that happens! I showed her the pictures we'd unearthed and offered them to the Society. She identified one of the men as being Mr. Savage and opined that it was probably taken at a recreational property the Savages' owned. She invited me to the next meeting (I'll be happy to go; it's right up my line) and waited to be invited inside. I was trying hard to get around it; the chaos is embarrassing. When it became apparent that she was willing to wait me out and good manners wouldn't allow otherwise, I took her in. She's happy. She's only been as far as the foyer before. Mrs. Savage was a wise woman. Anyway, for all that, she is now obligated to get my resume. She might know a friend of a friend.

Back to the present. Friday morning, the doorbell rang but I didn't get to it in time. A welcoming packet to the town from the bank was hanging on the doorknob. Mrs. Matthews had dropped by. How nice! No question that she was getting a resume that day! James and I made our rounds in the square. Beeline to Mrs. Matthews, resume in hand. Very taken with SF; he has a doctorate? Was in law enforcement? So was the late husband. Has his own business? My, my! She takes us around and makes introductions. She is retiring next month, after 45 years with the bank. Mrs. Matthews is also the VP for Community Relations. The CEO, my friend Jim's son, is also a state legislator. He has had her appointed to the state's commission on aging.

She introduces us to Mrs. Drain, a Black teller, who is also very impressed with the good "doctor." He kinda has that effect on people. Especially when she found out that he was a past "grand" something or other in the Masons. She's active in the Eastern Star. Well, Helloooo! Mrs. Drain just happens to be the head of the School Board; just the person I need to talk to. What is the process for becoming a sub? Not much time for the kid, though. I'm really not in her class; the good "doctor" is more important. To be a substitute teacher, she says, you have to have at least an associate degree. Oh! You have your bachelor's? From a teachers' college? No problem in getting you on board. Lawdy, lawdy. We are affected by degrees, titles, etc., aren't we? Use my name, she says. You betcha. Seems like I'm meeting the right people.

Off we go to the school board office. Couldn't find it. I was looking too hard. No problem. I know where it is and will get to it before the week is out. Ran into my very good friend, Mr. Criner, who advised me that I didn't need to spend money with him to stop in and say hi. He patted me on my back so hard, I could've keeled over. If that was a friendly pat, I'd hate to be on the receiving end of a slap. He and SF are becoming fast buddies. He has a service that Mr. Criner may be able to use.

Jay, thank you for your help. 'nuff said.

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