Archive | January, 2018

If All Else Fails. . .

30 Jan

. . .read the instructions.

For the last decade or so, The Squire has marched into semi-annual battle with the water filter. The bottom of the filter fits over a little nub in the bottom of the housing, and the top snugs up against a matching nub under the lid. You could hold the filter in place, but once you began to screw the entire fitting together, you simply had to move your fingers, and the water in the housing  would cause the filter to float loose from its moorings.

The last time we replaced the filter I suggested using store-bought white bread to brace it in place, on the theory the bread would break up and float away. It didn’t; instead, we had a lovely moldy green lump sitting in the housing.

The Squire went to the local Big Box and got a new filter, and he and I began the tedious process of installing it. When he took it out of the package a piece of paper floated to the floor, which I bent over to retrieve.

INSTRUCTIONS: To install the filter . . you put it in dry and then turn on the water. Took five minutes, if that.

Oh, Holey Night

19 Jan

In spite of all our best efforts, now both of us have this horrible cold.  The Squire is still sleeping in the recliner in the TV room, while the cat has been helping me hold down the bed.  The Squire seems to be on the mend, but I am now in the middle of this mess.

We headed upstairs when we got back from picking up the “Dough-Nation” from Panera. The Squire settled down with a book, and I did the same. I read for about an hour, but my Restless Leg Syndrome was still giving me fits, so I went downstairs to take a bit more medicine. His door was still ajar, and he was sound asleep with the book open on his chest. I removed the book, covered him up, and turned off the light. I tossed and turned a bit, and the last time I looked at the clock, it was after midnight.

The dog started to bark around 3AM, but by the time I put on my robe The Squire had already headed down to see what all the fuss was about. Nada. Blazer started up again a few minutes before 4, and this time we both went down. Not a thing to see, but we turned off the alarm and let the dog go take a really good look. Whatever was out there was on the other side of the stream. Blazer gave it a good barking at, and returned to the house with a smug expression.

I took a dose of cough syrup and staggered back to bed, hoping for a bit of uninterrupted sleep. No such luck. Even with the fan making white noise in the background, I had a hard time falling back to sleep, and then at 7AM Eddie decided it was high time for me to come feed him.  Yeesh. Between 10PM and 7AM I managed to get about five hours of sleep.

I’m gonna go take a nap. Don’t call me. I’ll call you.

When The Squire came down at 4AM he was in his night clothes, but when I covered him up at midnight, he was still fully dressed.  He asked me if I had wakened him and told him to change, which I had not.

“Must have been a Samuel Ready fire drill.” *

*  When I was at school I woke up one morning with my jeans (dungarees, we called them) over my PJ bottoms. Apparently, we had a fire drill in the middle of the night, and I’d gotten up, dressed, and gone out to stand on the athletic field with every other girl in the school. Couldn’t prove it by me. If it hadn’t been that everybody was talking about it, and the head mistress had congratulated us on our perfect performance, I’d have guessed the girls in my dorm had played a trick on me.




Cast Your Bread upon the Waters

16 Jan

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAChanging the water filter on our pump is a major undertaking, and probably the most frustrating thing to be done at The Rice Paddy.  The lines on both sides of the filter must be turned off, and then the housing must be unscrewed, and the old filter removed.

Now the fun starts. You have to fit the filter down onto a sort of peg at the bottom, fill the housing with water, and then screw the thing together with the top of the filter fitting onto a little nub at the top. The water makes the filter float, and it skitters sideways every time you try to screw it all back together.

Many years ago a friend had told me that when her husband had to repair a leak in their baseboard heating system, he put a small plug of store-bought white bread into either end of the repair. The bread kept the water back long enough to solder the leak, and once the system was turned back on, the bread dissolved.  So, we put bits of store-bought white bread around the filter to keep it from bouncing up, and it worked like a charm. We were both so pleased with our selves!

Until today, when we discovered a large blob of moldy green stuff bobbing like a boat in a storm, on top of the filter.


Not So Snappy

15 Jan

As members of Medicare, The Squire and I are also members of Silvers Sneakers, a physical fitness program for over 65-ers.  Not every place accepts this program, but there is one not too far from us, considerably closer than the Y.

We went up today to inspect the place.  It was simply filthy, for starters. It was not much larger than our living room and dining room combined, and crammed with machines. All we seemed to see were treadmills, stationary bikes and stair-steppers. If they had anything to work on your arms or upper body, we didn’t see them.  The crowd was a rough one – all tats and greasy hair. And the less said about the “music” the better.  And, not a trainer or employee in evidence.

This is an outfit that is supposed to cater to old fogies they are setting about it all wrong. If something goes wrong, you’re on your own, folks.

The Squire called the Silver Sneakers hotline and expressed exactly how he felt, thank you very much!

Man Flu

14 Jan

Actually, it isn’t really a case of Man Flu; The Squire is really sick. He has come down with this horrible cold/flu that has been going around, and the doctor told him it would hang around for about two weeks. Snorting and sniffling, and coughing until he sees spots. No fun. Been there and done that, myself.

He’s been sleeping in the recliner ever since his surgery, and now he finds he breathes better if he sleeps in a semi-reclining position.

I’ll certainly be glad when he’s well enough to come back to bed. The cat has decided he needs to keep me company. Eddie doesn’t toss and turn, and he’s not too bad about hogging the covers. At least when The Squire needs to leave the room in the middle of the night, he can open his own darned door!

Stay Tuned

5 Jan

We went down for the weekly bread pickup last night, and I braved the frigid temps to dash into Target for a few things. I grabbed a cart and headed to the Customer Service area to ask about an item I’d ordered.

While I was waiting, a young fellow strolled past in his housecoat.  He had that carefully nonchalant expression that practically shouted “I’m sooo cool”.  Every head in the vicinity turned to follow his progress. The clerk sort of shrugged her shoulders. “I’ve been seeing pajama bottoms all day, but that’s a new one. I wonder what they’ll come up with next?”

“Come spring” I suggested, “maybe they’ll be dashing around in their BVDs. Or streaking.”



Another Morning Visitor

1 Jan

We have another fox visiting us in the morning. It isn’t Julie (see May 3, 2015) but she must have “spoken” to Julie, as she knows all the tricks. Maybe she’s one of Julie’s kits.

She comes out very early, and sits in the back, about halfway between the barn and the food dish, staring at the house. If we’re in the kitchen we’ll see her and go out with her breakfast. If we don’t connect then, she comes down to the little garden outside the den window, and will watch us from there. Again, as soon as we notice her, we go out with the dog food, and she bolts away.

It was brutally cold this morning; the temp was 6°, with a wind chill of -2° – and I had come back in to warm my “widdle finners” after I’d filled the birdfeeders. I was sitting here in front of the computer, with my hands wrapped around a hot cuppa, when she sat down, made herself comfortable, and stared at me.

Mind you, the wildlife around here is just as spoiled as it can be. One summer evening we had gone out, and had not fed the foxes before we left. When we pulled into the carport, our headlights picked up a kit sitting on the other side of the stream. As soon as I got out of the car, he started yipping at me. I grabbed the bucket and started out to the barn, with Junior trotting along on the other side, barking at me the entire way.  As soon as I’d poured out the kibble, he dashed across and started to eat without waiting for me to get out of sight.

I can’t imagine living anyplace else in the world.