Monday, August 3, 2020

The Next Project

Taking advantage of an empty space in our schedule, Tim has figured out our next project. We begin building a garage next week, because of course, four garages are not enough. 

I joke. 


The problem is that we store things that we come across that we will need for future projects. Lowes is a very good place to look for bargains. We find tile being clearanced out and buy all that tile, for instance.  Then when we bought a house that needed a complete bathroom, we designed it with a mind that we had all that tile we could use. We've got hickory kitchen cabinetry tucked away. That's for our house, one day. We put a smaller window in the little house. Tim remembered the little art deco window we had tucked away. We had the linoleum for that same kitchen that Tim had found on clearance. Lights for the Wayne St house were a great deal, and so we bought them and figured out where we would use them later.

It always winds up getting used, so really, I cannot fault Tim for four garages full of stuff, because it is useful stuff. Except for the project vehicles that he tucks in there that he's going to work on some day when he retires.Those I can fault him for. 

In any case, last month, I went to the retirement property with William. He was playing and I was working in the garden. Rototilling, actually, which is why I didn't hear the truck coming up the driveway at a very fast clip. I saw it as it shot past me, and I was startled, because while people can (and do) use the turn around at the end of the driveway, we've never had people drkiving all the way in to the property. (That we know of.)

It was a tow truck, driven by a heavily bearded man. The passenger was 'like unto him' as the saying goes.

And, of course, not being of a cell phone 'mindset', I had grabbed my wallet on the way out the door, but had failed to note that my cell phone was not in it. I was pleased to note that William immediately stopped what he was doing and headed for me, even as I had shut off the rototiller and was heading for him. 

The truck stopped when it saw my car parked with the trunk open. 

It was pretty easy to tell what they were after. There is a car there. I couldn't tell you what it is, but it has a special engine in it, and they only made xxx number of them, and ad nauseum. I never listen to those rambles. It bores me silly, but Tim had gotten pretty excited when he found it. It was left by the previous owners and Tim issued an ultimatum: either provide him with a signed title at closing or tow it off the property. He was not sad to be given the title.

I stood waiting by the old apple tree and the truck sat there a moment, as if they were unsure of what to do next. Finally, the passenger got out. 

I waited, taking note of the details of that tow truck. New York plates. Unmarked, black, some distinctive lettering across the back, though. The man said, "Uh. We wanted to buy that old car there." 

Now here's the rub. People don't drive down from New York State in a tow truck and drive around aimlessly looking for cars to tow. They were there because they knew the car was there. You can't see it from the road, which meant somehow they knew it was there. 

I said, "You'll have to call my husband and ask him." I gave him the number, and he punched it in his phone right away. Then they backed up that truck and left. 

They did call Tim. We were able to track the number back to a name and address in NY state. I went on facebook and found him, scrolled through the list of his friends and found the driver, who was from Corry, a town about 20 miles away. Going through the Corry man's facebook, I discovered the Grand Valley link. It is a local man who does dirt track racing and builds his hot rods. Approximately the same age as the grandson of the original property owners, he probably had knowledge that the car was on the property, and taken note of the fact that generally through the week, there is no one there. (Well. There wasn't. But then it got dry and there was a garden that needed to be watered midweek.)

Cross referencing all three of them on the UJS portal led us to the discovery that they all had criminal records, mostly for stealing and drink related offenses. The local man had a drug history.

We've already been robbed once, and so Tim was pretty upset at the thought that they were there to slip that car out of there while no one was around. He now blocks it in by pulling the bucket loader cross ways behind it. 

All of this has added new urgency to get that garage built so that we can start locking stuff up. After all the trouble he had getting the Farmall started this spring, he also wanted to make sure that he didn't have that problem again. He wanted them both tucked away where they were sheltered from the winter weather.

So that's what we are doing this weekend. Tim trimmed back the massive white pine, cutting off the lower branches. We've got a load of lumber being delivered. 

Bob's Fault

Bob posted that he's having trouble with the new blogger format, that all his paragraphs were running together. I am not especially fond of the new format either, but that is because I am a stick in the mud who resists change mightily.

 If it ain't broke don't fix it. 

But I thought, "Gees. I haven't had my paragraphs all lumping together..."

Looking back, I realized my last two posts have been short and lacking paragraphs. So here I am at almost one am. I meant to head to bed, but now I've just got to test this new blogger thing out. 

If you are reading this all in one lump of sentences, Ed? Imma need you to get back here and tell me just what you told Bob. 

Friday, July 31, 2020


Damn woodchucks. They can do a lot of damage in pretty short order.

Wedding Bells

Cara and Colin have finally gotten a marriage license and will be married on Tuesday. 

We skyped for a while. Her wedding dress is beautiful. They both look overjoyed and in love. 

We cannot be there, but it will be lovely. 

Thursday, July 30, 2020

In the Dark

We've got plans for the weekend, a trip to the camp to check on the garden. Sunday, a family party. It is to celebrate my niece who came through major surgery at a time when she had to do it alone, with no comforting hugs before surgery. No one with her when she woke up. A week in the hospital alone. 

t seems like such a risky thing, out of place for these days, to have a family gathering. 

We will come and be together. We will be polite, we will respect boundaries. The party will be held hopefully, at an outdoor venue. You cannot reserve these places now, but if we get there first, we can set up. It is across the river from us, in a pavilion next to a playground where kids can play and run. If we are not at the pavilion first, we will simply have it at our house. 

We will be celebrating life in these strange days of daily death tolls. Our county has had 15 cases. There has been one death registered, but that person wintered elsewhere. She contracted the virus there and died there. 

I have to say that I am torn about this family gathering. 

Last night, I woke up at 3AM listening to the thunder and watching the lightning, and grappling with the idea of what is right and what is wrong. 

In Europe, there would be no doubt. They are taking things much more seriously there. As an American, Cara is trapped in Georgia. She cannot leave the country because no country will allow her in. She could come home, but as much as I want to see her, I wouldn't recommend it. I think in the long run it would simply delay her entry to that next place that they will belong.  

There are a lot less questions there than here. The rules are in place. This is what you do. And people do it. They simply follow those rules. 

Here, everything is a controversy. Every damned thing. I live in a county where people are proud not to wear masks. (Many do, but many don't, and if you run up against a jackass, they will hiss that you are a libtard, or a coward). Stores post signs that the governor has mandated masks, but also openly note that they will not enforce this rule. People gather, and events continue, and everyone has their favorite conspiracy theory. 

Other people see this as a threat to life. They mask and are outraged by the folks that don't. They cite science and Dr. Fauci and the dumbing of America. 

Confusingly, there are also those folks who shout about hoaxes and how this "pandemic" (their quotations marks, not mine) will be over after the election, yet, sometimes point out that America is  the only first world country who does not pay parents to stay home and protect their children from this life endangering virus. Pick a side people. Pick a side.

In the midst of this chaos, there will be a small party for my niece who was diagnosed with cancer, and who faced the diagnosis alone. After a grim prognosis, the surgery was successful (but complicated). They think they were able to remove it all, with a lot less damage to internal organs than they expected. For right now, they believe that she won't need chemo. 

And in the middle of all this chaos, it just seems like something that should be celebrated. 

I lay in the dark and worried about the decision once again. 

In the distance there was thunder.