Saturday, April 14 2007
Gretchen drove down to the City today in one of the cars, on a mission that would involve hanging out with her erstwhile girlfriend, the person with whom she lived for nearly five years before we got together. The two had been estranged for years but recently started communicating again.
At some point I took the dogs with me on an errand into town to, among other things, obtain rubber cement and a replacement remote control for the video equipment (its crucial pause function recently stopped working). I grabbed a couple slices at the pizza joint across from the Staples (they always have creative pizza combinations there, though some of them seemed designed to make a vegetarian cry) and was served by a very extroverted lad who looked to be about twelve years old. After I returned to my car, I let the dogs out to run around while I gathered up a bunch of thick pieces of White Ash that had been cut to perfect length, though they still needed to be split. These were parts of a tree that had recently been felled in the construction of a brand new hotel, directly across 9W from one that was built only a year or two ago. This part of the motor mile appears to be experiencing some sort of anonymous Anywhereville, USA gentrification, and now comes complete with a Borders, a Panera, a BedBath&Beyond, and even a drive-through Starbucks.
Back at the house, I had a lot of programming to do, and was just gearing up to do it (for some reason this involved a bottle of Michelob Lager beer). But then I saw that, out on the south deck, surrounded by the barking versions of Sally and Eleanor, I had a visitor. It was the teenage neighbor girl from up the farm road. She and her parents are weekenders, and she is developmentally disabled. She's nuts about the cats and dogs, but also has a keen interest in playing the piano, as she prefers its sound to that of the electronic keyboard back at her house. It seemed like the neighborly thing to invite her in and give her grape juice and cookies and chat for awhile. She's unusually observant and likes to talk, but she isn't an especially good conversationalist. For example, she looked out the window and noted that one of the pines had fallen down (this happened back in October) and she asked me if I was going to cut it up now, and by that it sounded as if she meant while she was there. She's also a little weak in the social graces department, suggesting that it might be fun to sleep over some time. I was just conjuring up some sort of chore that I needed to do that would necessitate her leaving when I heard her mother calling.
I ended up staying up until 6am programming, although I kept taking breaks to do things like research the number of chromosomes various animals have in their respective karyotypes for an ongoing contribution I was making to Wikipedia.
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