My room is a mess

It’s full of toys and papers, computer supplies, and boxes.  Part of it’s due to not quite knowing how to deal with my current living situation, most of it’s due to laziness to put things away.  I don’t know, maybe cleaning up and organizing my room will make my living there feel more permanent?  I’m pretty sure part of me doesn’t want that.

Cluttered

There are still a lot of boxes of stuff from my apartment crowding the garage.  I’ve been sorting it sporadically, but I’m still hesitant to dig in there.  Part of it’s because of the amount of effort it will take to sort it all.  Most of it is having to fight the memories associated with these things.

Clearing More

Today dad and I cleared out half of the back row of grape vines.  It’s amazing how much easier it is when you have a sharp chainsaw chain!  Though the slope looked sadly empty afterwards, dad quickly started filling it in again.  We’ve got a bunch of new vines ready to plant, and that’s what dad did.  Though, calling them vines at this stage might be a stretch.  They’re more like twigs right now.

Clearing away the vines

Over the weekend, dad and I cut down the front row of grape vines in the backyard.  A bit bittersweet to see them grow, but they never quite produced as much as they should.  But not to fear, dad has more vines ready to take their place, and these should be better suited to the soil in our backyard.  The hardest part of removing the vines was not having a sharp enough chain on the chainsaw to cut down the stems.  They’re thick!

The lesson here is to use goggles

I found out today that getting paint in your eye stings like hell.  My parents recently patched a spot on their ceiling, so I was called in to paint it.  Now, I know what you’re thinking – that I was painting over my head and wasn’t paying attention to the drips.  Not so!  No, what got me was when paint flicked off the brush as I was painting ahead of me!  Totally unprepared, right into my open eye.  Thankfully, my contact lens provided a little protection, but that still didn’t prevent me from looking like the victim of a porn shoot.  After the burning sensation died down enough for me to wipe off the excess and open my eye again, I had milky white tears for the next few minutes.

Back to L.A.

With the constant swing of weather from cool to hot, the lack of air conditioning in this apartment can become apparent at times.  Since we installed the new windows in the L.A. house months ago, the window A/C units there have gone unused.  In fact, they aren’t even installed any more, just sitting in the living room.  So I’ll be picking one of them up later in the week and bringing it back here.  How we’re going to make it work with the window setup at the apartment, I don’t know, but it’s worth a shot.

Fixin’ stuff

Since the apartment is near the ocean, it has no air conditioning.  With only one fan, it’s been difficult to stay cool at times this summer.  Thankfully, we got some reinforcements a few weeks ago.  My parents gave me a table fan they had just purchased as a temporary fix when their own air conditioning unit broke down a few weeks earlier.  And we brought over the standing room fan that was in the LA house for so many years.

This fan was not in good shape!  But I knew that going in, so I was prepared to make do.  First thing was cleaning off the months of accumulated dust.  Thankfully I had a box of those clinging dust wipes to make my job easier there.  Beyond that, there were some mechanical issue that interrupted the side-to-side movement.  As a stationary fan, it works great, but if you want it to sweep the room, it’s noisy and prone to freezing.

So I opened the fan up to see what was going on in there.  There were some stress cracks from years of use and some inconveniently placed cords that got in the way of the gears.  After liberal applications of zip ties and even a twist tie, the fan rotates as it should, and it’s even a fair bit quieter.  I don’t know if these fixes will hold, but I sure feel like I accomplished something!

Upgrading Amalia

On Monday, installers completely overhauled Amalia’s windows.  In six hours, the old, single pane, cracking frame affairs were gone, replaced with modern windows.  Not just double paned, but sliding top and bottom panels, even sliding screens.  In order to prepare for the installation, we had to get the metal bars over the windows removed on the Saturday prior.  So now we have nicer looking windows with less obstructed views.  It’s a little sad that there’s no one in the house right now to appreciate them!  Another side benefit: anyone who’s spent any length of time in that house knows how hard it is to keep it clean.  Apparently, the windows were a big part of that – in addition to being drafty, they were terrible at keeping the dirt out.

End of an Era

I helped my old roommate move out of the LA house yesterday. After so many years, we’re finally going to sell the house. There’s still some big improvements to make, but we’re nearly there. As much as I didn’t like living there all that much (more to do with the age of the house than my roommates!), I will miss the place.