Monday, May 14, 2018

Sunday's Story

It wasn't raining when I woke up on Sunday, but it had rained again overnight. I looked outside and the lake was back, this time with two ducks!

Sorry its a bit blurry, but they were way in back and that's the limit to my camera's zoom.

Curious, I went out in my robe to check the rain gauge (I deliberately didn't empty it the entire weekend. I had just under three inches in the gauge!

I ate cold cereal for breakfast while I watched the morning news shows.

I putzed around until 11:00 a.m., doing Sunday chores, taking the trash out, cleaning the main bathroom and reading (I wanted to make sure it wasn't going to rain again). Then I shaved, showered and got ready to go shopping.

I have been completely unable to get the push mower started. Since I haven't used it in more than five years, I suppose that makes sense. I should have kept starting it yearly, like I did the riding mower and the motorcycle, but I didn't. I do have a lawnmower repair shop right down the road, but I know they will have to replace the air cleaner, the spark plug, the blade and fix the one wheel, even before getting to whatever is wrong. So, I estimate it would cost $150-200 and what would I have? A 15 year old push mower.

Sidebar: When I bought it, I could still push a mower. Now my legs are so shot, pushing it over the front lawn seems a daunting task

So, I checked out several places and found a relatively cheap self propelled mower ($269.00 for a Troy Built) at Lowe's. The Lowe's website said there was one left at the Westland store. So, I headed there after a stop at the Post Office (I had bought a tee shirt I wanted to send to Carla). I then took Beech Daly to Warren Road and Lowe's

But, when I got there, there was none left! Not even the floor model!!! I asked the guy to check if there was any in the back. He did and said, "No." Then he checked nearby Lowe's and said there were none, anywhere.They are all back-ordered.

The next step up (also a Troy Built) cost $299.00 and only the floor model was left. I asked if I could buy that. He said "Sure, and tell them at the register it is a floor model and to give you 10% off."

Sidebar: The only difference is the upgrade has variable speed (same engine, same size). Not sure what the advantage is. But with 10% off, it's the same price as I was willing to pay. So, I bought it.

I made one impulse buy. The one mini-blind in the bedroom had many broken blinds (mostly from Caley but a few from me). I could live with that, but now the mechanism that turns the blinds quit working. So, I grabbed the smallest one ($6.00) and headed to the check out.

I got my discount, paid with my Lowe's card and asked if I could get somebody to load it in the truck. A little later, a guy showed up and I watched carefully how he grabbed it to put it in there. I bungie corded it in and left for home.

I stopped at the Kroger gas station at Warren and Middle Belt and used my fuel points to fill up my gas can and the truck. Note: With gas prices continuing to creep up, I didn't feel like I had saved all that much.

I drove back on Inkster and was shocked going over the Hines Drive bridge. The Rouge River had flooded so badly that the gazebo in the park itself had water halfway up the posts! I wish I could have taken a picture, but there was no place to pull off and stop.

I was getting hungry but wanted a break from potato soup. So, I stopped at Arby's and got a buffalo chicken sandwich meal.

Back home, I left the truck outside and went in to treat the cat and eat my lunch. Then I went back outside.

My original idea was to ask my neighbor to help me unload the mower.  But he had company (two cars in the drive). So, I duplicated the Lowe's guy's handholds and managed to get it on the ground without dropping it.

Sidebar: I did get it down, but at a price. My back hurt the rest of the day.

My plan was to pop in the mini blind and then read the owner's manual for the mower.

But, when I went to put in the mini blind, it was too long. It was 32 inches and apparently, the old one was 30 inches! Damn!!!

So, since I knew the one I had just bought was the smallest they carried, I decided to move the holders it snapped into.

What a pain in the ass!!!

I had to use my stepping stool to get up and down, as well as a kitchen chair to give me something to hold onto. I couldn't get the screws to start, so I ended up getting a finish nail and used that to make an initial hole. It took almost three hours until I finally got the old holders off and the new holders on. Then I got the new blinds installed. I cleaned up the mess I'd made, put away all the tools and put the old mini blinds in the trash.

So, now my knees hurt, along with my back. It was after 5:00 p.m. so I took a long break laying on the bed.

When I finally got up, I warmed up another bowl of potato soup and put the rest in the freezer.

I watched the movie "American Sniper" until 11:00 p.m. and then went to bed. I had an 8:30 a.m. appointment at the eye surgeon's Monday morning.

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