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The MINI has Landed!

Just after 1:00 I heard from Jonathan that indeed, the MINI arrived in Chicago safe and sound. He was excited. Make that thrilled, and after all, who could blame him? Certainly not me.

Actually, the car made the trip in record time thanks to our driver Dino, and Trish, whom I'm imagining is a dispatcher of sorts. Let me tell you in a world of diminishing customer service, Trish exceeded my expectations at every turn. She definitely went the extra mile to ensure that the experience was relatively anxiety free. Hurray for dedicated people! At one point I asked her if she was one of the owners because of both her pleasant manner, and over the top service. No, she replied, I just try to do a good job. And, she does.

I wish I could say the same for the folks over at Thrailkill Mowers. Yuk! Yesterday morning, before hanging the clothes on the line, I wanted to use our newly serviced and repaired mower to mow the grass under the line. It would not start. And again it would not start. And once again it would not start. Grrr....

Later in the day I called to tell them as much. Their response: It started when it left here! Even though there's no real connection anymore, long ago Mrs. Thrailkill was Matt's first grade teacher. She went to bat for us, imploring the principal to allow Matt to be tested for gifted, even though in those days they generally waited until about third grade. Several years later, Bill entered her classroom for first grade, and once again she was a champion for another Peck boy. I can't remember how many years ago they sold the business and moved to North Carolina. Unfortunately the new owners are not so great. Still, our preference is to buy local and so we did, buying both a new blower and edger a few weeks ago. Not to mention leaving the mower because it would not start. You may remember that our lawn guy no longer wanted us as customers because I asked that he not come while the grass was such a disaster. I am the new lawn guy, and happy about it. However, I need a mower that will start.

Long story short, after grumbling, the owner sent Willie to pick up the mower. Before loading it into his truck, he pulled the string more than a few times. Eventually the mower came to life. What he discovered is that the pull string they installed was about a foot too long! After shortening said string, I could start it right up. Willie is definitely the shining star over there, unlike the owners. Now, I just need grass to mow.

I exaggerated when I said I was going nowhere yesterday. For most of the day I cleaned, and boy does the floor feel better. After Willie's visit ,and Mark's visit to fix the newly installed gate, I headed over to Angela's house for a birthday party. She has a good friend named Dodie,  whom I've gotten to know through her. Angela requested I take pictures, which I did, however, they were just okay. There is glass everywhere, not to mention lights at every turn; I believe my poor camera didn't know what to do. Here's Dodie:
I've never seen anyone open gifts quite like she did. I believe this is when she was throwing tissue paper around. As well, after opening each card, she ripped the envelopes in two. Interesting. You might note the little bag on the floor. It was my gift, and to be truthful I did not want to give that bag away. I found it at Tuesday Morning and just loved it.

Although Jonathan is soon to be jobless, Bill is not. Wachovia/Wells Fargo was thrilled to hire him once again, and he began his new position Monday. His report so far is positive.

Matthew called today and during our conversation it went video. What are you saying Gail? Well, welcome to FaceTime, a new Apple feature that works with an iPhone and a Mac. He was on his iPhone, I was on my Mac. No telephone needed on my end. This is some crazy world we're living in isn't it? You have to wonder if Alexander Graham Bell ever imagined the possibilities of future communication. In any case, it was great to see Matt in his flat. Plus he had on a really nice shirt and sweater/jumper. Seeing his boyfriend Tom and speaking with him was a bonus. Ahhh....the charm of a British accent.

Those acorns keep dropping like mad. Thousands of them really. There are some good things about getting older, one of which is you've heard a lot of stuff. Can't remember most of it, but still.....
Somewhere in the recesses of my mind I seemed to recall that dropping acorns were used long ago as a sign of impending weather. Indeed, apparently, according to the Farmer's Almanac, over-zealous acorn drops may signal harsh weather ahead. Only time will tell.

Not only has the MINI arrived, but pointsettias (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euphorbia_pulcherrima) have as well. Today, while picking up my atlas for the trip, the garden center at WalMart was loaded:
Absolutely beautiful and only $3.00. I bought two, which was good. With all the money that has been flowing out of this household, I'm thrilled at a $6.00 purchase. My frugal nature has been severely challenged in the last few months. I'm heartened to know that we have been part of the movement to keep the economy moving. Let's hope others will soon have the means to join us.
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