August 31, 2005

Let The Sun Shine

Looking outside today, you'd never know that yesterday we were in the midst of a Tropical Storm and that every school in the city other than The Boy's was closed. It's bright, sunny and hot today. I wouldn't mind it feeling like fall was around the corner, but it only does if you know that the hot misery of August comes before fall. Random thoughts coming up next.

The images of New Orleans and Mississippi are impossible to fathom -- impossible to comprehend. I can't think of anyone I know who lives in that area, although many, many college friends were from there, and I suppose most of their parents are still down there. For the past few days, I've spent a lot of time wondering what's happened to them and praying for their safety and the relative well-being of their homes and possessions. I also ponder the fact that had Justin taken the full tuition scholarship he'd been offered to Tulane's law school instead of coming to Vanderbilt, we'd have known many people in New Orleans and instead of living in Nashville, we could have just as easily decided to stay in New Orleans ourselves. A simple choice of law schools years ago may have decided that we did not lose our home to a hurricane and flooding waters. It's a strange thought.

My little (but much taller than I am) brother flew in yesterday to Tennessee. He's been teaching English in Japan for a year, left there in a typhoon and after a few days in Colorado, arrived in Tennessee during a tropical storm. Poor kid must be getting used to being wet all the time. He'll be visiting around, working and then starting in January at Savannah College of Art and Design on a BFA in painting. I'm signing up to get some paintings before I can't afford his prices. He already has a BA in English and claims he'll be moving on to either a philosophy or sociology degree next. That part is a joke, but no doubt he'll be very desireable to all the highest caliber fast food restaurants with both art and English backgrounds.

On my way to the airport to pick up my brother, I noticed a gas station with gas for $2.49. It was on the wrong side of the street and I was late, so I decided I'd stop on the way back if they hadn't raised the price. They hadn't, I pulled in, put in my credit card and noticed they were changing the signs right then. I never thought I'd be happy to get gas for under (by 1/10th) $2.50, but there you have it. Every other station in town is up around $2.75 or more. I'm glad my car can run on 87 octane.

Robert Reich had a brilliant idea on Marketplace this morning though. Since gas companies have had windfall profits they weren't expecting, we should take them away and give them to people who weren't expecting higher gas prices. Right. That would make it all better. Share the wealth and all that. Riiiiiiiight.

So moving right along --

The Boy seems to be happier at school this week. He got a new bench partner and doesn't have to sit next to the girl he didn't like. He still doesn't like having to be quiet during snack time, but having one short time during the day when he actually has to stop talking is really not such a bad thing.

We still haven't gotten the window in our front gable, but it isn't for the window company's lack of trying. The window itself has been ready for several weeks. They called and told us when it came in and we agreed that the contractor would pick it up when he was ready to do the job. Then a week or so later, another person from window company called and wanted to know when they could deliver it. I told him who the contractor was and that it would be picked up when the installer was ready for it. They called and talked to the contractor who does a lot of work for them. I thought there was no problem, except that installation got delayed by the fact that the fiber cement shingles we originally had planned on using turned out to be $1000 per square. Today I ordered cedar shingles that I think will look fabulous and better than the fiber cement ones anyway. I also talked to our contractor and he thought he could do the installation in about 2 weeks -- the shingles will arrive in about 5 days.

Things are moving along. But -- today a man from the window company rang the doorbell and told me he had my window to deliver. As much as I am dying to see how it turned out and would have loved to get a peek, I wasn't about to take delivery of a large window and figure out where to store it for two or more weeks, so I sent him away and told him our contractor was supposed to pick it up. I know they want the other half of the money for the window and I know they are tired of holding onto it for us, but I don't have a place for it to just sit around.

And now the kidlets want attention. I'm reading The Great Brain series to The Boy. My mom read them to me when I was little and I've read them a number of times. Wonderful books and even more exciting -- I didn't know there were eight of them. Growing up, we'd only ever read the first four. Hooray for more books!


ugh. I don't know how you can stand to listen to Robert Reich's piece all the way through without breaking the radio (or at least changing stations).

Posted by: Frazier at August 31, 2005 05:10 PM

I'm a woman of infinite patience. I can even sometimes listen to Daniel Schorr without turning off the radio -- although listening to Jonah Goldberg last weekend filling in for the famed Senior Correspondent, was infinitely preferable.

Posted by: Jordana at August 31, 2005 05:23 PM

*kicking myself*

I almost stopped this morning when gas was still "cheaper" but didn't.
Then I had to stop this evening and I paid $75 for 25 gallons.
The pump stops on $75 when you use a credit card.

(I drive a Suburban unfortunately)

Posted by: Mary at August 31, 2005 07:05 PM

My 5 year old loves the Great Brain. We've read all of them and he been in the mood to read them again once we get through the book we're currently reading. They're good books and we've had good discussions about how things weren't always the way they are now. Ice in blocks from the barn? A toilet as a new thing? Good and fun way to give some perspective on these things.

Posted by: Jennifer at September 1, 2005 11:02 AM