Sorry for the Blackout — Redux

Filed under: @ 6:10 pm

So what, I hear you ask, has been happening on Margaret’s end of things?

Well, obviously I got done with the Crud. Although whatever Crud this was, the damn thing is persistent. I still cough on occasion.

I got done with the Crud in time for David the Contractor to *FINISH*, that is, honest to god, FINISH! Which, of course, launched Andrew and I into the most noxious bout of Spring cleaning that I’ve ever experienced. I spent, no shit, two days cleaning the living room. Drywall dust is one of the most pervasive substances on the face of the planet. I also reorganized, re-alphabetized, and moved about 2/3 of the books that we own. Ya wanna know how many books that is? LOTS, that’s how many.
Just last week we got the little man in here to clean the carpets so we’re now calling the interior part of the remodel as done. At least mostly done. Contractor and builder done. I’ve still got to move my study into what is now our (I feel so grown up!) guest room so I can peel the wallpaper off the walls in my study and repaint. And there’s still a wall in the laundry room that David patched that needs a coat of paint. and if I’m feeling energetic I might actually slap a coat of paint on the walls in the (snert!) guest room to cover up the pink (pink?) and find something that will match better with the navy blue with white flowers wallpaper, the only wallpaper in the house that I don’t loathe.
There is no longer a bathtub in my garage, but the toilet, sink, mirror, batwing door, and other bits of the old bathroom remain there. For the record I’m officially un-impressed with the RE-Store. For those not in the know they’re a retail organization that takes donations of used building materials etc. for resale. I called them a month ago to have them come out to scope out and remove what of the debris they’d take. I called them three weeks ago, I called them two weeks ago. Each time I called I was told that their field crew would give me a call within 7-10 business days and to date there has been no contact. I understand there is an organization called Second Use who will be my next option.

Since the weather was appropriate on Thursday I got up, discovered that the rototiller and the gas can were both out of gas so I walked to the gas station to fill up. Yes, I appreciate the irony of walking to the gas station so as to not drive my gas fueled car to purchase fuel for my gas fueled rototiller, but since the poor little beast only drinks about two quarts of gas per year, I figure I’m justified. Anyway, I spent about two hours rototilling then spent the next 5 hours transplanting the 40 plus volunteer potato plants, planting an additional 6 pounds of seed potatoes, beans, and what I think turned out to be something like 500 onion sets (I lost count). The theory is that between the castor oil based mole repellant and the onions I should be able to protect my potatoes from the fangy little subterranean rodents that ate half of my potato crop last year. Bastards!
Oh, and sunflowers, lots and LOTS of sunflowers. Just for fun I left the stem of the Russian Giant that I grew last year in the ground over the winter. Where I pulled up all the rest of the stems and left them to rot and be tilled in with the rest of the mulch this spring, the Russian Giant topped, I kid you not, 11 feet and the main seed head was almost 14 inches across. Yeah, this one….

And I wanted to see what the winter would do to it. The stem, which was as big around as my wrist at the base, was still standing in the garden when I went to till. I dug it up. I jumped on it in my big clunky garden boots and when it wouldn’t split I figured I’d chew it up with the rototiller. Nope.
So I tried to break it over my knee. Nope.
So I finally gave up, got out my bow saw, sawed it into 2-3 foot sections and I’m now using it as row marking stakes. Some day it may actually biodegrade, but I’m not holding my breath.
I’ve also got great plans for filling the raised beds that will be in my new front garden, but since Sheri and I will be starting on the restoration out there only next week I’ll have to hold on that for another couple of weeks.

On a more personal note, since I am rapidly facing my 40th birthday my MD requested that I make an appointment for a mammogram. Once I was over the Crud (my appointment was originally scheduled for the first day that the Crud hit and I wasn’t no way no how going to go and get mashed with a 102 degree fever) I went.
In “Invasion of The Dykes To Watch Out For”, Alison Bechdel describes a mammogram as “[It’s] no big deal. They just clamp your tits in a vise for a couple seconds.”
Which I find to be a remarkably accurate description. Because I have a medical background I was asking the radiology tech questions about the machine she was using (a remarkably nice and hideously expensive digital machine for the record) and as a little treat for being knowledgeable about the process she offered to show me the images. I’m no specialist, and god knows I think radiologists sometimes suffer the effects of spending to much time in the dark, but the films looked good to me.
Looked good to the radiologists too as it turns out. I got the interpretation in the mail yesterday and apparently my boobs are fine. Bruised, but dandy.
Get it done ladies. “It’s no big deal.”

And for now I think that’s covering enough ground. I’ve still got to tell y’all about the bossy nutritionist, the ruling (SPOILER) in my favor from the Veterinary Board of Governors, and why sunshine sometimes makes me stupid. But for right now there are things that I’ve got to get done to be ready for the week so I’ll pass on the rest of this and hope that some day next week I’ll not want to garden for enough time to catch everyone up on the rest of it.

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