Saturday, July 23, 2005

Living With People Who Refuse to Jiggle the Handle

Well two days in a row I've come home to a flooded bathroom and hallway. It's getting old. The DH fixed the toilet in the kids' bathroom, which means they must jiggle the handle after they flush so that the toilet doesn't stay stuck on fill, so that the water stops running! On Thursday I washed three loads of towels after lugging the dripping things across the house to get them to the washer. Last night I started three more loads of towels, yes, they're the same towels I washed the day before, hoping they'd all be washed and dried and folded one more time before anyone needs to take a bath.

Friday Starts Out Good

Friday was going to be a good day. Not too unbearably hot, beautiful, I leave the house and the gas station around the corner from the house has gas and no line. You can't imagine what it's been like down here. No gas since Dennis hit. I skipped getting gas on Monday because people were lined up down the highway, I had over half a tank, so I thought to myself, I'll get gas this afternoon, well nope, that didn't happen. All the gas was gone by the time I got off work, no one had gas in our little town, no one in Ft Walton Beach or Gulf Breeze. "It's ok", I tell myself, "I'll keep the driving close to home and fill up when I can." Well I was running on fumes by Thursday afternoon. I ended up having to put gas in my tank from our emergency gas cans. Do you know how lucky I am to have had two full emergency gas cans? I'm usually not this organized but Hurricane Ivan taught us a lot of good "how to survive when times get hard" lessons or "how to be prepared in the most important way when disaster strikes" which means keeping a little extra gas around. So I add some gas to the tank and head off to work, but on the way, I notice a few cars sitting at gas pumps at the little station around the corner from my house and no line. I top off the tank and fill up both gas cans that I had tossed in the back of the truck just in case I found gas. Then I pay the water bill only two days late, so I'm on a roll, paid a bill, got gas, refilled my emergency gas cans, pretty good start to a Friday. I get to work, it's not unbearably hot, we're busy, which is good, it's been dead since Dennis. I mean we're talking winter numbers. I leave work, pop in McD's to feed the kids because we have basketball all night tonight. My McD's is good, they rarely mess up orders. So good that I hardly ever double check the bag to make sure everything is there. Well I get home and instead of a 10 piece chicken nugget, a 5 piece chicken select, a 6 piece chicken nugget happy meal, and three medium fries, I have two quarter pounders, a 4 piece chicken nugget happy meal with apple slices instead of fries(who ordered this food?). I'm hot, I'm tired and I'm pissed off. I call McD's, "I don't mean to complain, you guys always do a wonderful job, I mean that's why I didn't check the bag before pulling away, you all are that good, but my food was completely screwed up." The lady on the other end said, "Let me guess, you got the quarter pounders and the happy meal with apple slices." "Yes," I say. "Yeah the lady behind you in line was not too happy about the mix up. Do you want to come back and get more food?" "Uh, no. I'm home, I'm tired, I just wanted you to know." "Ok," says Ms. McD's. "Give me your address and I'lll send you a free extra value meal coupon." Gee thanks.

Then I get home, shower-I'm in the tub and hear water running, not mine but from the other bathroom, I scream, "Jiggle the handle on the toilet!" no one can hear me, I scream yet again, "The bathroom is flooding, shut off the toilet!" again no response. I get out the tub, wrap a towel around me and scream out the bedroom door, "will someone please do something about the toilet in your bathroom before it floods the whole house?" Well who the hell knows how long that thing had been running, two inches of water in the bathroom floor and the hallway was starting to flood. I throw a fit, scream, yell and lay every towel we own on the floor. I get dressed, frustrated as hell and head to Lowes to purchase some stuff for a butterfly garden. I head out the door and am driving backroads, they're faster, and my truck starts sputtering, and the "service engine soon" light comes on. I call the DH, the gas in the gas cans probably was a little "dirty" buy some gas cleaner at the store. Okey-dokey. Run in the store we will not name, buy some gas cleaner and The O.C. the complete First Season. Ok I've been traumatized, I needed a perk, I'm going to be unemployed in a few weeks, I have to spend the rest of my money on school clothes this weekend, you get the picture. I get back to the truck, pour the gas cleaner in the tank and go next door to Lowe's. No butterfly bushes to be found. I toss the whole flower garden idea for the time being, the butterfly bushes were the anchor in the whole mess, and I spent my budget on the O.C. Season 1. It's ok. No time to plant this weekend anyway, I'm at basketball tonight(Friday), tomorrow morning, and Sunday I work. So I head home, truck is running fine. I pull in and there's a huge fight in the neighborhood about a broken chair. I try to get to the bottom of it and none of the kids will claim responsibility. I talk to my neighbor we work it out. DS#3 will work off part of the damage because he admitted to being a part of the incident, no one else did. He'll rake some leaves to pay for his share of the damage. Come to find out the child of the guest at neighbor's house was as much a part of it as DS#3 but the weasel and his weasely mother never owned up to it to my neighbor(the mother of this kid knew the night it happened), apparently this happened several nights ago and no one bothered to tell neighbor. There were four kids involved total and my DS was the only one to apologise and take responsibility. Fortunately neighbor realizes that there was a coverup and DS was the only one to do the right thing. Then the DH pulls in the driveway and something is leaking from my truck. Nothing has been leaking before now but he thinks it's anitfreeze from the "block" whatever the hell that means. Doesn't sound good. So until we have time to figure it all out, I have to keep my driving local, so much for my covert trip to the LNS I had planned for Tuesday.

Then we head out for DS#3's 7:45 basketball game. Uh, it was at 6:45. I screwed up, had the wrong time in my head. He got to play for 3 minutes. I so totally suck. Well we have an hour until DS#2's game so we go to McD's yes "that place". We order food, they forget DS#2's three piece chicken select. I go inside, inform them of the error of their ways and they treat me like I'm trying to score some free food. PUHHHHHLLLLLEAAAAZEEEEE! This round should have been free but I'm not complaining. I didn't go back earlier, I'll get the coupons in the mail, it'll be good. I finally convince them they didn't give me the chicken selects and go back to the car, it's getting close to time for DS#2's game so we just eat in the car, head to his game, they lose by two points. It was a great game.

I talk to the brother of the kid who wants to buy the BBQ Pit, he says it's not a done deal. I thought it was, hmmmm.....very interesting. So I may not be out of work after all.

Kids are thirsty, concession stand closed, DS#1 has yet to eat so Taco Bell is supposed to be open late, we head there. They are closed. Par for the course today. We head to "that place" and yep, they screwed up the order yet again. Three for three people. But we caught the error when we were paying not when we were pulling away so it's good. Finally home for the night. It's like 11pm. One long miserable day. Let me tell ya. Here's hoping Chuck is ok. Chuck is my truck and I hope there's nothing seriously wrong with him. I have school clothes to buy, I may not have a job much longer and don't want to touch the extra $$$ we have in the bank at the moment.

Another Good Friday Thing

Came home to find my Knit Picks order waiting on me. Four skeins of sock yarn and Ann Budd's The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns. The sock yarn is Sock Memories Fly Fishing and Knit Picks Sock Landscape in Rocky Mountian Dusk. Very good stash day. Now to find the time to knit something. Or rather to learn how to knit something.

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