Monday, July 14, 2014


It's too hot out and even though it's 7:37pm, it's stuffy inside my house. Last night we had a red sunset that, along with the heat, made me think we might be experiencing Armageddon. We have yet to cross that threshold for which it is cooler outside than inside the house. I want to open the windows wide to let in the cool. The cat wants to sit in the fresh breezes by the screen door.

It's hard to sleep in this weather. I like sleeping under a pile of blankets. I like the weight of them, so a thin sheet just won't do. And I can't imagine sleeping without being covered. Hot or not, I want to burrow in at night.

These are the days of three bean salad, cooking on the barbeque, and finding water. Tomorrow, we go to the pool, but the other mom I'm going with doesn't want to swim. Well, we do have some work to do, so Starbucks will do. I say that as if going to Starbucks is a consolation prize. If Starbucks has a decaf sugar-free iced mocha with my name on it and if it has an air conditioner, I'll be the regular fan that I am. I have a friend who works at Starbucks, so sometimes I send him a text with a picture of my coffee saying, 'paying your salary, one cup of coffee at a time.' I think I'm so funny. I'm probably not, but I go a little loopy in this heat, never quite relaxing unless my feet are in water and I can feel a cool breeze. I don't get much done when it's this hot. I fell asleep on the couch today and woke up all sweaty and disoriented, something like the way I woke up in this morning, the sun beaming onto me from the skylight and feeling all sweaty and dreaming of water. No, I don't get much done.

What I'm supposed to be doing is bringing boxes and boxes back into the house from the storage unit. Our floors are finished, but now we have to find places to put all that stuff that was so neatly stored away while my family came to visit. It looked like we'd just moved into half of our house. To me, it'll look right when we get more of our stuff put into place, when the books are on the bookshelf, and when the pots and rocks and camping gear are stuffed into corners. Who wants to see corners of floors anyway?

But it's too hot to haul boxes of stuff. I've managed to get ten or fifteen boxes moves, but it involved a lot of unnecessary sweat and an aching back. Two boxes didn't even make it into the house. They're waiting out in my car, in Nick's preferred car seat. That might get some feedback from him, but will it get me some assistance?

I don't know. I'm too hot to care.

People, I live in the Pacific Northwest. I'm not suited to this hot and dry weather. Can you please order some rain for me? I'd really appreciate some rain. A few drops? A drippy faucet?

Thank you for listening, jules

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Gobsmacked at My Fury

I'm still crabby. My house guests have left, but I'm still pissed off.

I'm still mad because on Monday, I have to call the septic people to have my septic system drained.  Two of our house guests showered until hot water was gone on a daily basis, overwhelming the system. The rest of us were frequently stuck without hot water or had to wait until it regenerated. Twice, I couldn't do dishes because they wouldn't have come clean without hot water. I did laundry, but had to put it on a delay cycle. I would never think it was okay to visit someone's house and shower until the hot water was gone, especially when there were eight people in the house.

I'm still angry because one of my guests, who supposedly has a problem with things being clean, left hair on the floor, on the toilet seat, next to the garbage, and in the sink after showering. If I had a problem with being clean, I'd try to leave a bathroom as clean as it was when I walked into it.

I'm still annoyed because someone consistently claimed the front seat and put my mother in the back seat when the honorable thing would have been allow her the front seat. Her age and her condition should have guaranteed her the front seat if she wanted it. I told him he had to share, but he didn't. He only relented and sat in the back seat when I personally took my mother's elbow and ushered her to the front seat. If I were chauffeured around in someone's car, I wouldn't think it my right to sit in the front seat all the time. I might take a turn in front, but I would share. If there were a much older and debilitated person, I would let her sit in front the whole time.

I'm still steamed because there were two people out of the six that visited, males, who never lifted a finger to help the whole week. Cooking and cleaning up after is not a woman's job. I realized that they were guests, but even guests have responsibilities. When someone cooks for me, I think it polite to at least offer to help clean up. If I'm staying for more than a day, I'll help cook too. If there are more than four people in the house for multiple days, everyone should take a turn cooking and cleaning.

I'm still fuming because we loaned one of our guests my car and he ran it into the rock wall in our yard and damaged both the wall and the car. He never apologized for that, never offered to get either fixed, and continued to use the car as if it were his own. He was consistently late returning when we had decided on a time to leave together and once locked himself out of the car, requiring seven of us to drive 45 minutes to where he was and rescue him. I didn't even know he'd driven into the city with my car. If I borrowed someone's car and crunched it, I'd hand back the keys, offer to have it fixed, and apologize profusely. I wouldn't go places in it without their knowledge. If I held up a group of eight people, I'd apologize and resolve not to let it happen again. I'd probably feel bad about borrowing someone's car to begin with and just rent a car if I wanted to have one available.

Is that enough reason to still be torqued twenty-four hours after my house guests have gone?

Thank you for listening, jules

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

I Was Robbed by Sixt Car Rentals

Well, guess what?

I was charged $185/day for a Renault Clio by Sixt Car Rental while I was in Europe!

Did you get that?

One Hundred and eighty five dollars a day!

In Strasbourg, France, when the woman behind the desk at Sixt said the car would cost about $100/day, I was shocked, but I figured stuff costs more in Europe. It was hot. We were tired. Two other rental car companies didn't have any cars left. So, when the woman behind the desk quoted $100/day, we decided to go for it, exorbitant or not. I was willing to pay the $100/day. It was crazy expensive, but I figured that's what people paid to rent cars in Europe.

I looked it up. You can get a quote for renting a car for $25/day in Europe. Don't fall for the hype. You shouldn't have to pay $100/day for a tiny little Renault Clio. I mean, this is a subcompact, people. It's not a luxury car by any means.

Yesterday, I got the bill.

Sixt charged me $185/day and when I called, they said they couldn't adjust the charges in any way. I talked to my credit card company. They said that since the numbers add up correctly, there isn't anything they can do.

I heard a story of an American tourist in Italy being charged $250 for a taxi ride from the airport to a hotel. Yeah, I said, that would never happen to me. I wouldn't be conned that way. I would never fall for crap like that.

I just did.

Remember that name - Sixt. They will take a month's rent away from you in charges. They won't do a thing about it when you complain.

And this company had the gall to send me a rewards card with this perky little letter about all the benefits of having a 'streamlined car rental experience.' They tell me that they look forward to providing me with excellent service in the future.

My ass.

Thank you for listening, jules