Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Catching Up.

I had an appointment with the infectious disease doctor last Thursday, but I was too sick to make it. So, I rescheduled for this coming Thursday.

I spent most of the weekend in bed. My neighbor and the mechanic came and got the mower on Sunday. They brought it back Sunday evening, but I was sleeping. So, they just put it in the shed and shut the door.

I went out and locked the shed on Monday, but now I didn't pay the guy. Never saw my neighbor that day, but saw him out back on Tuesday. So, I went out and gave him the $500.00 to pass onto the mechanic.

My brother Carl called on Tuesday.

I got just under one inch or rain all weekend long. They said best chance of rain would be on Tuesday, but it never rained a drop here in Redford.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Hump Day

I slept great! I think it was all the fresh air. So, I left the windows open when I woke up. I figured I'd close them if and when the A/C kicked on.

I had an appointment with the WOW technician Wednesday morning. Which meant I was more or less trapped in the house between 8-11:00 a.m. I even got a robo-call on Tuesday in Kroger's, reminding me of this.

So, I made sure I got dressed and both I and the house were presentable before 8:00 a.m.

I watched the Today Show (I like it and can't change the channel, anyway) while I waited.

And waited...

And waited...

I ate another chicken leg (cold this time) and the last of the potato salad for lunch.

BTW, I always just buy the little tubs of potato salad. I wonder if it would be better if I got it from the deli instead. I do like potato salad, but it's a pain in the ass to make and, since it's only me, I end up throwing most of the homemade potato salad away when the mayo turns watery.

I gave the guy (or gal) until 1:00 p.m. before I called to bitch. The woman I talked to put me on hold for a long while as she tried to call the local office. She finally came back on the line and said she couldn't get in touch with them, but would call me back when she did. She finally did call back and said somebody would be here on Thursday morning. I told her I had a doctor's appointment in the afternoon, so it would definitely have to be in the morning.

Eric Knapp and his wife stopped by on the way to the airport (I think they were picking up a relative). I had told him last summer that I had a charcoal smoker I bought but never used. He's a big smoked meat man. He had asked what I wanted for it. I told him nothing, I just needed the room in the shed.

So, they had driven over from Massachusetts (where they live) for a family reunion and stopped by to pick it up. I met them at the door and told them to go around back and I'd bring the key for the shed.

Sidebar: I didn't invite them in. Not sure now if that was very friendly, but I figured if they were anything like me, getting to the airport in time was the first priority.

Anyway, I offered him the wheelbarrow or the wagon to get it up front. Instead, he just picked it up and carried it!

Sidebar: Why are people doing this to me all of a sudden? First it was Amanda and the hanging plant I couldn't pick up (she picked it up with one hand and raised it over her head to hang it back up, if you remember) and now Eric, easily carrying the smoker I would had trouble just getting it in the wheelbarrow or wagon.

Anyway, we all shook hands and they took off.

I ate the last of the pasta salad for dinner and then washed out my Tupperware bowl.

The A/C never did come on, even though they said the high today was 81 degrees. So, I kept the windows open for another straight night.

I watched TV until an early bedtime.

Tuesday

I made two eggs over-easy with toast for breakfast on Tuesday, then I shaved, showered and got dressed.

I had a 10:00 a.m. appointment with my eye doctor in Farmington. When I went by Bates (Five Mile and Farmington) there was just one truck  in the parking lot. Hmmm.

I passed every eye test with flying colors! The doctor tried to also sell me on clear glasses with readers in the bifocal area. I told him to forget it, I am enjoying not wearing glasses way too much.

I had thought it might be fun to call out all my locations on Facebook, but I forgot to do it at the eye doctors. I remembered it about half way back to Kroger's.

I wanted some bone-in pork chops, but couldn't find any. I did see a 12 pack of fat chicken legs, so I got that instead.

Before I left, I checked in on Facebook. Then I drove to Bates for an early lunch. The place was packed! No a single parking space left!!! WTF? It was only 11:40 a.m. Why aren't these people at work?

No point in checking in on Facebook. So, now instead of the eye doctor, Kroger and Bates, I just had Kroger's and look like a dork.

So, I drove home instead. I put the cold stuff in the fridge, changed clothes and laid on the bed to rest.

I got up after an hour or so and split the chicken legs into three bags of four each. Two went into the freezer and one in the fridge for tonight's dinner. I took the last five eggs and hard boiled them (I bought a new dozen).

I took the last kitchen trash bag out to the trash container by the road. Then I watered the hanging plants and the mailbox garden.

Back inside, I took a nap.

When I woke up, I started making dinner. I wanted the chicken legs, but not a big mess or fuss in the kitchen. So, I made them the way I had seen Carla's mom do it once. I patted them dry with paper towels and sprinkled them with Lawry's seasoned salt and garlic powder. Then I just fried them in my big cast iron frying pan, filled about one third of canola oil and topped with my grease splatter screen.

I put them on a rack over paper towels to drain.

I ate two of them (they were really big) with some store-bought potato salad I got from Kroger's. The potato salad was just so-so (it always is), but the chicken was excellent!

I retrieved both the trash container and the mail then I watched TV until bedtime. I left the window in the bedroom and the window downstairs open to the safety latches (it was that nice out).

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Is it Monday again?

It was another night of bathroom trips. I was grateful I wasn't throwing up (I hate that).

Sidebar: I have used the toilet so much the screws are loose and it rocks. I'll have to fix that.

I got up at 8:00 a.m. again (which is really late for me). I went out back to check the rain gauge (perhaps it rained overnight?) But there was nothing in it. However, it was cool with a slight breeze. So, I skipped writing the Blog for a while, grabbed a cup of coffee and sat on the back patio (out of the sun) and enjoyed the morning. That lasted less than an hour, until it was uncomfortable.

Back inside, I wrote the Blog. Then I started making phone calls. I called two separate doctor's offices that were billing me without submitting it to either Medicare or Blue Cross Blue Shield (they'll look into it), rescheduled my eye appointment and the infectious disease doctor visit (I missed both last week) and finally called WOW about my cable problem (guy will be out Wednesday between 8 and 11:00 a.m.)

They said on the news that there was a possibility of severe thunderstorms after 2:00 p.m., so I took the trash out to the road early.

I ate more pasta salad for lunch.

Then I hunkered down to wait for the much needed rain.

I waited... and I waited... and I waited...

Finally, I checked the radar online. Seemed like at that time all the action was north of here. I just had blue skies.

I kept the computer on the radar. At times they showed a big green or even red blob right over Redford. But when I looked outside, it was still sunny. WTF?

I ate more pasta salad for dinner.

My daughter Melissa called me back and we talked for a while. She answered my original question about golf (don't ask) and we went on from there.

By the time it was dark, I still had no rain although the TV was saying some places had 1-3 inches of rain elsewhere.

I woke up in the night to just go pee (for a change) and looked outside. The street looked wet and I thought great! I got rain!!!

I checked on Tuesday morning and there was less than a quarter inch of rain in the gauge. Damn!!!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Slow Sunday

I woke up at 3:00 a.m. with diarrhea. Nice. On the plus side, I did wake up. That could have gone horribly wrong...

This happened about every two hours. I finally gave up and got up at 8:00 a.m. I ate breakfast, but threw it back up.

When I still wasn't better at 10:00 a.m. (even after eating yogurt), I sent a text to Amanda, cancelling today's adventure. I was supposed to go with her and her friend Angie to the Plymouth Art Fair. But I figured that wouldn't go well with shitting and puking.

She said to stay home, feel better and she would just go with Angie.

So, I finally made my pasta salad. While the tri-colored rotini cooked, I prepped the veggies. I ended up using grape tomatoes (halved), two bunches of scallions (cut on the bias), two baby salad cucumbers (never saw them before, but Meijer's had them - I left the peel on them and cut them into little rounds), one yellow pepper, diced) and finally, a summer squash (I bought a long, straight one, cut it into rounds and then quartered each round). I tried to make everything approximately the same size.

I added some sliced black olives and the now cold pasta. I tried something new for the dressing: Kraft Tuscan House Italian dressing. I added in some shredded mozzarella cheese. I mixed everything together, then taste-tested it. Needed salt and pepper, so I added that. Then I stuck it in the fridge to chill.

Sidebar: It dawned on me later some feta cheese would have been a nice option. Not that I had any.

Then I did some of the Sunday morning chores. I wound the clock, refilled my pill box and stripped the bed. I did a load of laundry and then washed the bedding.

I saw on Facebook that Amanda had found the jeweler she was looking for. She got her ankle bracket fixed and bought the ankh ring she had been wanting.

Sidebar: It's an ancient Egyptian symbol (I had to look it up). I don't know what it means, but it looks like this:

Anyway, I commented on her post, saying I was sorry I couldn't have been there. She said, "Don't be. It's way too hot out here!" I said I wouldn't know, as I hadn't been outside. She said, "Good! You stay inside!!!"

Sidebar: Why are there so many of my young women friends who are so quick to boss me around. I'm old, not stupid. I know how to handle hot weather. Wear light colored, loose fitting clothing and drink a lot of water. I had already picked out my Puerto Rico clothes to wear.

I tried the pasta salad for a late lunch It was really, really good. Only complaint I had was some of the yellow pepper pieces were too big. The raw summer squash was a nice touch.

I would have stayed inside, but I had to water the porch plants and the mailbox garden. Amanda was right! It was stifling out there.

I made up the bed and returned my daughter Melissa's call from yesterday. But, I just got her voicemail.

I had bought two summer squash, but only needed one. So, I sliced up the other one and sauteed it in butter (like my Mother used to do). Man, I love that stuff! I'll have to buy some more while they are still in season.

Some time after 8:00 p.m. I heard occasional thunder. I'd get up and check, but it wasn't raining here. This happened all night long. Apparently, the storms moved all around me. But I never saw any rain.

Because of my broken sleep last night, I went to bed at 11:00 p.m.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Saturday's Story

Saturday was warmer still, along with higher humidity.

If you remember, Vicky was supposed to come out Friday. She had to cancel but said she's come on Saturday, which would be better anyway as Yanessa would be back home.

Sidebar: Yanessa has been up with Daniel's parents in Traverse City for the past week (a yearly tradition).

Well, when she called on Friday it was at 9:30 a.m. So, I shaved and jumped in the shower after a quick breakfast. I got dressed and then went to Looney Bakery so she and Yanessa would have something to snack on. Back home, I waited and I waited...

I was checking Facebook when I learned her cousin had come into town and they were all over at her uncle's house! I waited another hour and sent her a text, asking if she was still planning to come by or could I go grocery shopping (I need some produce).

She said she was still coming and she needed some things, too, so maybe we could go grocery shopping together. Unusual, but interesting concept, so I said sure.

She got here a little after 1:00 p.m. without Yanessa. She said her grandparents decided to stay one more day. We sat and talked for at least an hour, just catching up.

Then we went grocery shopping. I was almost out the door when I remembered I had just put on my pants on and didn't have my house key. I grabbed the keys off the dresser.

While I normally go to Kroger's, she had coupons for Meijer's so we went there instead. She was amazed at how big our Meijer's was compared to hers.She also said ours was much less crowded. We each took a cart and took off.

As I said, I only needed produce, so my shopping didn't take long. I waited for a while and then went looking for her. She just had one of those smaller baskets, but filled it with a variety of "stuff." I helped her look for things.

She used those self checkout things (I never do, I always screw it up) so I did, too. My bill came to $12.00. I reached for my wallet and found I had left it home! She said she had my back, so I told her to put in a $20, I'd keep the change and then pay her the $20 when we got back home.

Back in the car, she said she was hungry. I asked her what she wanted as we have a lot more restaurants around here since work in Livonia (I named off about 10 of the new ones within a mile). She said she'd really like to go to Red Lobster.

Sidebar: Both Yanessa and Evy are allergic to seafood, so she never gets it at home.

So, we went there. She ordered an appetizer (Lobster and Langostin pizza) and we both ordered the Linguine with Shrimp Alfredo with the Caesar Salad (we always did).

The food came, but no appetizer. Two older women came in and sat across from us, but nobody came to take their order. The waitress never came back to refill my water. We waited and waited for the bill. Finally the manager came up and explained to the women their waitress had abruptly walked out of the restaurant!

After he took their order, I caught up with him and asked for our bill. She paid it (no tip) and we drove home.

I carried my groceries in and went to get her the money for the groceries and lunch. She said to forget it. I said, "Don't be silly!" She said "All those years we worked together you never let me pay for lunch. So, I'm buying today!"

We made our goodbyes and she drove away. I was beat from the grocery store, so I changed into shorts and a t-shirt and took a two hour nap.

I was still full, so I skipped dinner, just had a snack. I watched TV but fell asleep during Saturday Night Live. When I woke up, I turned off the light and TV, then went to bed for real.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Friday

Vicky was supposed to visit Friday morning. So, I got cleaned up and waited for her. But, she called around 10:30 a.m. and apologized. It seems she had previously agreed to give a girlfriend a ride, but forgot about it. I told her it was no problem, we can always do it another day.

Still no rain, so I watered the herb gardens, the hanging plants out front and the mailbox garden.

I ate a ham sandwich for dinner, then watched TV until bedtime.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Thursday, July 12

I cut the front lawn on Thursday. We still haven't had any rain, so it didn't really need it. But, it might rain on Monday and I don't want it to get away from me.

The back grass gets cut.

Apparently, my lawnmower mechanic couldn't find any lawnmower service to cut the back grass, so his boss at  the repair shop sent his kid over with a huge walk-behind mower on Friday.

Sidebar: I only know this because my neighbor Rick told me.

He didn't do the nice straight lines like a regular lawn service (or I do), but he got it all cut down. I paid him $50 for cutting it and another $10 to trim it.

So, that's done.

An Exciting Fourth of July

The fourth of July didn't start out ll that exciting. It was a pretty normal day. Temps were in the 90's and still no rain.

But, about 9:30 p.m., I grabbed a beer and went out back to watch the fireworks from the patio. Some were quite impressive!

When they slowed down, I went back inside, only to hear somebody frantically ringing the door bell. WTF? I opened the door and there was a kid hopping around like he had to pee. He said, "Mister, your bush is on fire!"

I followed him outside (I should have gotten the fire extinguisher from the kitchen first). By the time I got out there my neighbor, Rick, had put it out with his fire extinguisher. Two more neighbors showed up. Then the Redford Fire Department rolled up.

They insisted on walking through the house, even though I told them I had three smoke detectors. They said it was procedure, so they did.

I felt bad for the bush. It was an arbor vitae I had planted there when I first move here. Fortunately, it was on the corner of the vestibule, which is stone.

I took a picture for you the next morning.


Friday, July 6, 2018

Tuesday

Tuesday was much more exciting. Amanda stopped by and we sat in the A/C and bullshitted for a bit. I bought her lunch at the Brunch Cafe - Newburgh and Six Mile. What I liked about it is you don't need to eat a ton of hash browns. They  also offer a fruit bowl. I got the eggs Benedict with the fruit bowl and she got a mushroom omelet, also with the fruit bowl. I ate her honey dew melon (she doesn't like them) and she gave me a big piece of her omelet (It was delicious).

Back home, she left and I went to refill the cat's water.

I lost my balance and crashed into  the exercise machine. It's got cables and I was stuck there for a while.  I finally got free and crawled to the steps. I used the hand rail to get back up. I have a foot long bruise on my left thigh, a  wicked bruise on my left arm and a nasty looking red left eye.

I bought a cheap-ass steak at Kroger's. Now, normally I prefer a bone in rib eye steak about a half inch thick. But, this month I have even more medical bills and $500.00 for the mower repair.

So, I Googled it. It was a beef chuck shoulder Texas broil choice. They said you either needed to cook it fast or low and slow. Two hours and it would be tough. They also said a marinade would not work. Just salt.

So, I salted it and then I went to bed.

Monday

Nothing much happened on Monday.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Sunday's Story

It was a little cooler on Sunday (only 90 degrees) but no less humid on Sunday. So, I mostly stayed inside in the air conditioning.

I had yogurt with fresh black raspberries for breakfast. My raspberries are coming in fast and I am trying to beat the birds to them - I never win (wish I knew how to make jelly or jam).

Sidebar: I did talk to Amanda later on in the day and told her if she wanted some black raspberries, to feel free to drop by and pick all she wanted during the next few weeks.

I ate some more leftover pizza for lunch.

I was almost out of large and small band-aids (not good for a klutz like me) so I put on some pants and went to CVS. It was unusually crowded. On the way home, I go the truck washed at the hands-free car wash.

I left the truck in the driveway and went back inside. I treated the demanding cat and grabbed a towel. Then I went back outside and dried the truck off. It looked great, for a change.

Sidebar: Ever since I quit working, my truck has suffered. At work, I'd get it washed two or three times a month at a real car wash. Now it just sits there with crap on it. It's a shame. I have the time so I suppose I could wash it myself. But the problem is the hose is in the back of the house. Pulling it up front is no big deal, but winding 75 feet of hose back up is a bitch!

Anyway, I left it outside to make sure everything was dry and went back inside.

About an hour later, I pulled it inside and walked around with my camera (I wanted to show my brother Carl the difference between this year's clematis and last year). Last year it was glorious, this year it's puny.

Black raspberries
More black raspberries
Day lilies are starting to bloom

Day Lilies
Under-performing clematis
Oh, by the way, the clematis out back did grow up the trellis but did not produce a single bloom. Must have been a bad Spring for clematis here in Redford.

I went back inside and watched DIY shows until supper time.

Now, my plan was to make Seared Lemon Garlic Butter Scallops from a recipe I got off the Internet. But the only scallops I could find at Kroger's were the SeaPak frozen ones which were already called Lemon Garlic. So, I had to adjust.

I cooked the scallops according to the instruction in the frying pan. Meanwhile, I heated up three tablespoons of butter, 1/4 cup of white wine (out of those little bottles - not a big wine drinker) and the juice of a whole lemon. When the scallops were done, I dunked them in the saucepan and gave them a bath.

I did one of those 90 second Uncle Ben microwave packets of long grain and wild rice.

Finally I plated them up.

It was excellent!!!

I watched stupid TV until 1:00 a.m. and then went to bed.

Sunday, July 1, 2018

The heat is on...

Let's review: It was 89 degrees and a little muggy on Thursday. It was 93 degrees with 86% humidity on Friday. And it's supposed to be 97 degrees with high humidity today.

So, I stayed inside as best as I could in the air conditioning.

Sidebar: Come on, interruptible electrical power, don't fail me now!!!

I ate a bagel for breakfast and the last of the pasta for lunch.


But about 3:00 p.m., my neighbor sent me a video text he got from the mechanic. I am going to try and upload it.


He said the guy (I should learn his name - on the other hand, I still don't know the name of the grocery store at Beech and Joy and I've been going there for years, lol) needed to know the model number of the tractor. He said they were both next door in the pool (nice), so I grabbed the shed key and met them outside.

The mechanic said the deck and the tractor don't match! I asked how that would be possible as I bought it brand new from Lowe's. He pointed out there were four numbers under the model number and that meant it was reconditioned. WTF? He said it happens all the time. He also said whoever rebuilt this deck put the one pulley on upside down which is why it ate into the swing arm.

I got screwed, I guess.

Once he had the information he needed, they asked if I'd found the other blade. I said no. I'd walked about a quarter of the grass on the south side but didn't (or couldn't) see it. So, they said, "Let's take a walk!"

Sidebar: My daughter, Melissa, suggested using my magnetic disc in the tall grass.

So, the mechanic took the south side, Rick took the north and I walked up the middle. I found it next to the maple whose roots grow above the ground. Oddly enough, it wasn't damaged (which eliminated the theory the other blade got bent by it. The mechanic said it looked perfect, but he would match it up to a new blade. If it was, he would just sharpen it and I saved $25.00. Yes!

So, they went back to the pool and I went inside. I was feeling pretty good until I went into the bedroom...

CALEY SHIT ON THE BED!!!

I could have killed her. I should have killed her. But, I just yelled at her instead. I cleaned it off with toilet paper and then stripped the bed. I put everything in the washer, sprayed the mattress pad (which was not wet) with Fabreeze and sprayed the room with air freshener.

I put a towel on the mattress pad over the Fabreeze spot and took a nap while the washer did it's work.

When I woke up, I put the bedding in the dryer and went out front to water the hanging plants and the mailbox garden. I brought in the mail while I was at it.

I ate cold pizza for dinner. Then I watched TV until bedtime (after SNL). Firewoks were still going off at 2:00 a.m. I know because I was trying to sleep.