Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tuesday, April 19th 2011

Well things are going well for me I guess. Not much has been going on. I'm supposed to get a new student tomorrow on the bus, they gave me new directions today which go up that way. The last three kids sort of liked the change. While I didn't have to actually make the stop, it shouldn't add more than about 5 minutes to the route in the afternoon at least. Ten minutes maximum. The kids are still great most of the time. We're going on a field trip Thursday, but I'm unsure of the finer details. I'll ask tomorrow.

I'm still reveling in the awesomeness of bicycling. It's so much fun! I'm on the bike, pedaling constantly and my legs ache slightly from moving non-stop, but if it gets hard I just shift down one, if it gets suddenly easier I'll thrilled to shift up and go faster. When the wind is blowing it can feel like torture in the same gear, but just one down makes it so much better. Keeping the same cadence of leg pumping doesn't really let you notice that you're going slower, just that you're still going, miraculously. It seems somewhat strange, but sometimes it feels as if it gets easier to keep going the longer I'm at it. The return trip, or the last few miles, are usually easier (unless there is the dreaded wind!).

I got a bicycle pump today. I needed it. I think there must be a fixable leak somewhere on my back tire at least. It's slow, but persistent, and my steppy pumper got a hole where the hose bends around. I tried the floor pump we had here and surprise! it moves no air. Useless! I didn't ride yesterday because of that disappointment. So I went and got a pump today, WITH a gauge. The frame pump is great, but I can't tell how much air I'm putting in. Once again I got the tires up proper and felt the give in the rubber- I've been way under-inflating with that tiny fun thing. Oh well.

Meanwhile, I think I might be getting better. I decided today to bike to town, to see how far it was to the health department for my appointment next Tuesday, and also because I just felt like going there today. I figured I would go north from there and if I had time, stop at the bike store, and if not, time how long it took so I could plan better the next day. I had eaten lunch late today so it cut up some of my riding time.
Well I made it to the health department in 15 minutes, which is awesome, no need to worry there. Also the bike store was only 30 minutes after I started. I had time, so I stopped in. The man in there is super nice and didn't try to sell me anything, let me just share my enthusiasm over my accomplishments, and let me refill my tiny bottle. We tried on some helmets, and at first he was doing regular adult models, until he realized when I wobbled one that the comment about me having a small head wasn't a joke. Then he magically opened a secret door into a mid-store cubbyhole and produced two helmets: one pink and one blue. I like the fit of the blue better maybe? It has a visor which just might be useful for something other than decoration. But the pink one is pretty and doesn't have the visor. Frankly I've wanted to rip the visor on my current helmet off, but it feels funny to throw it in the trash, and meanwhile there are tiny holes where it pokes into the plastic shell of the helmet. So I still wear it, but it does nothing for keeping sun out of my eyes. Also, Jessie has a blue helmet and the twin in me wants to be like we were when younger- one in pink and one in blue! When we go back to buy one I'll try them on more carefully, and we'll see which color I end up in. Oh, and these, being tiny helmets, are on sale! Because no one usually has a small head like mine, I'm pretty assured they'll still be there whenever we decide to go back, especially since they are magically hidden too! (ok not magic, but I totally did notice a door behind the rack of sales items. They swing forward like a movie secret-passage.)

So far I haven't done anything with the little trailer except pull the bare frame along behind me for the practice and extra tiny bit of weight.

Otherwise, everything else is fine. We're looking to move shortly after the 10th of June when school is out and I should get my summer's 4 withheld paychecks. Weekends are spent working on cars and the week is work, biking and laundry. Simple, enjoyable.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Tuesday April 5th

Well, the rain today canceled the class trip to the landfill. It's an odd field trip, I know, but this is a sort of ecology/earth science class. I was kind of intrigued and since the water treatment plant was neat, I was planning on staying for the tour or whatever.

Instead, I transported portable students to the main school building due to the storm warnings. They get evacuated to real shelter when things look bad. Then, the gates were closed behind the buses and they couldn't get out! I was empty, being the furthest bus away, so no one came on mine. So, I parked in front of the gates, grabbed my keys and my poncho, and got my pants and sleeve cuffs all wet rescuing my poor trapped bus buddies. Wow it was coming down hard and was windy to top it off, so the poncho annoyed me by not doing its job very well.

The kids are all excited- they got the little chickens finally. They're plan, in case I haven't mentioned, it to keep the chickens and donate eggs to the food pantry. Doesn't sound like a bad plan to me, I might want some chickens. I like eggs, and they are easy to keep.  Strangely, the kids don't have peeps I guess, but chicks with adult-color feathers in, and they say 2 died, and they got 2 more, and I guess one more died today. Its a feed or pet store, and I'd be suspicious of disease or something, don't you think? So far I haven't seen the chicks outside, they are in a classroom, my kids tell me.

One of our drivers makes bird houses for a hobby. He made the cutest little schoolhouse bird feeder. It's red and adorable, with a peaked roof and little tinkly bell tower. The roof lifts off, he says, and the feed comes out on the porch and onto little windowsills, I think.

I discovered that my bike parking place becomes a bicycle swimming space in heavy rain. This sucks! I had the perfect little nook between the portable wall and the ramp to park it, using the ramp bars to lock it to. Out of the way, partially hidden from all view. But wet. I have fenders! I totally tested them out today, and they were so awesome I aimed for a few puddles.

I finished my couch cover over spring break. Or finished enough to do a final fit check and ran out of thread (again) and was convinced to leave it on unhemmed for now. It's gorgeous, in my opinion, though I've had a few "why plaid?"s thrown at me. Maybe because I wanted to fry my brain matching up all those stripes, ever think of that, huh?? However, they DO all match up so nicely. So its a great effect. If I cover the pillows, they would be solid black or brown, I think. Several people at work now are considering hiring me, I think. I made a few dollars hemming curtains, which was neat, since I learned to do a blind hem to finish them. My thread collection is lacking an earthy brown-green tone.

Let's see, spring break was otherwise uneventful and lazy. The trip by bicycle 12 blocks to the bank is entirely too short, but there isn't much you can do from the house due to the bridge restrictions. You end up going WAY too far (for me) to try and make a trip out of it to another bridge to make a circle. I did, however, find out that just over the bridge, which is about 2 flat miles away from home, is a little park that is supposed to have a doggie section. And if I don't like that one, then a mile away is another one! I want to take Jackjack for a bike ride. He did really well in a backpack. I've considered a milk crate on the rack.

Speaking of my poor dog, I think he's forgotten how to walk! He somehow damaged his rear foot and the nail came completely off, leaving just toe and a quick nub. That was a mystery in itself trying to figure out what he could have done. I ended up finding the nail (cleaned out by ants, eewww) just inside the laundry room door. Anyway, he's stopped limping and being forlorn.
Now, I get home today, and he walks outside- limping! He has done the same exact thing to his opposite front foot, outside nail. This one hasn't fallen off yet. I'm stumped- his nails are not unnormally long for the 7 years we've had him, and the quick inside them is long so I can't trim them much more than they are. Maybe a trip to the vet to have them purposely cut into to trim the quick back? Anyway, he's back to being poor little Jackjack for another few days.

And last but not least, in case you didn't know already- I LOVE MY BIKE! It's so pretty, especially with bright sparkly raindrops all on it, hehe.

Happy Tuesday!