I spent the last seven months in a state of semi-suspended animation and didn't get much done around the house. I was nervous about scheduling anything because I didn't know when something might blow up with my mom. Now I'm clearing up those arrears.
About a year ago, the 1.5-inch clear plastic disk on the kitchen faucet leaped off the faucet and dived into the garbage disposal. Shortly thereafter, not knowing the disk was there, I turned on the garbage disposal. Loud shrieking noises, stench of hot plastic and overheated motor, smoke wafting out--it got my attention right away. I shut down the disposal and let it all cool, then tried to clean the jam. I pressed the reset button, I did the broom handle trick, I used the Allen wrench, I did everything, but it was jammed.
So I did manage to buy a new pull-down faucet in a nice modern-ish style from Overstock.com, as well as a new faucet for the RO filter. That was maybe six months ago. Finally, last week, I called the plumber and, on Friday, the plumber came over and replaced the garbage disposal and installed the faucets. He discovered that the drain assembly had a crack in it and replaced that, too. Is it ever nice to have all that put back together. The faucet is just fine, although taller than I expected.
A couple of weeks ago the top part of the agitator in my washing machine stopped moving. It's one of those extra-large Whirlpools, maybe fifteen years old, that can be repaired forever. Anyway, I looked at Appliance411.com for clues and discovered that it was worn-out dogs on the clothes mover (that's the upper half of the agitator). I'd gotten by washing medium-sized loads, but I was slipping behind, so I called the repair people. I had a call scheduled for last week, but one of their repair men had a stroke and their schedule kind of fell apart. They moved my appointment to Monday. The repair woman arrived right on time and confirmed my diagnosis immediately. She whipped out the old dogs, slipped in the new ones, and put it back together really quickly. She didn't charge me for the service call because I'd known what was wrong, saving time and effort.
My dog, Neil the Collie, defended the house from the repair people by lying in the family room and barking occasionally. He's thirteen and doesn't have a lot of energy, so we thought he was doing pretty well to stay awake the whole time. Needless to say, the service people didn't exactly cringe in terror at his bark.
Neil doesn't know it, but we're getting ready to do the thing he hates most in the world. We're going to load him, with a lot of stuff, into our van and drive down to Palm Desert. It's about a 2.5 hour trip if all goes well. He hates it. He doesn't mind being in Palm Desert; he just hates the trip. He'll be glad to be there, as it's a lot warmer, particularly first thing in the morning. Here it's freezing when he goes out at 0600 or so. Down there it's a lot warmer.