The weekends in which Suzanne is here
go way too fast. The weekends in which I have to clean catboxes go
way too slow.
A new car, a great party, moderate reconciliation
with the neighbor, some very good exercise, and getting to DJ again.
Yes, a spectacularly-good weekend.
Suzanne was down here this past weekend,
and will be down here again next weekend, mostly so that we can go to a
tractor show I really like over in Berryville, Virginia. She drove
down Friday after work, during the time in which I was picking up (and
paying for) the new Volkswagen. The newest member of the household
is a 1996 Volkwagen Passat TDI, black with a gray cloth interior, and a
five-speed, and it gets phenomenal mileage. I went over to the Amtrak
station at BWI to meet the guy, who arrived with his wife close behind
in their (new) minivan, and we traded keys and titles and lots and lots
of hundred-dollar bills, and then he went to the airport to fly to the
UK. I went to my favorite pub to wait for Suzanne to arrive. After
she did, we had something to eat, hung out with people, and then went back
over to retrieve the new car and take it home. Illegally, since it
isn't registered yet, but that'll be done this week (I "borrowed"
the plate off my red Passat).
For some reason, Suzanne got up at 6:30
am even though we hadn't gotten home until after 2am, so it was pretty
much impossible for me to sleep too much later than that. We did
some things around the house, talked to the cats (who are all shedding
a true storm of cat-hair), then went over to a party some newly-engaged
friends of mine were having in Ellicott City. True to form, pretty
much as soon as we got there, it started raining, so everyone clustered
under the porch and in the kitchen, enjoying their beers and watching the
Chee-Tos absorb all the humidity. Mmmmm... chewy! By
mid-evening, though, the consensus among the attendees was to move a portion
of the party back over to the pub we all patronize, where we could watch
sports, listen to music, and generally, get stupid.
The music was my job, since I had the
iBook and its complement of more than seven thousand tracks. Suzanne
was amazingly game to come along and watch me ply my avocation, and of
course got special consideration on requests. She is, after all,
the DJ's girlfriend. We thoroughly embarrassed some of the younger
people by being all kissy in between tracks, and ended up running out of
music, battery and energy just about at closing. We drove back to
the house and slept well into the next afternoon.
The neighbor I talked about the other
day came over and we came to an understanding about his contractors' use
of my pasture. He agreed once again to tell me when he'd be having
people do work, and to tell them not to leave big-ass ruts in the pasture.
We'll see how long that lasts.
I don't live far from the C&O Canal
Trail, which leads over to Harper's Ferry, West Virginia, so we put the
bikes on the back of the Passat and went down to the trail, and then rode
over into Harper's Ferry to see what was around. From my house, it's
only about three miles to Harper's Ferry along the Potomac, but the last
segment of the ride requires you to carry your bike up a set of stairs
and walk it across an active train trestle. Don't worry, they have
an enclosed walkway, but it's a little unusual to be walking a bike high
over a river with amateur kayakers flopping around in the water forty feet
below you. In Harper's Ferry, because it was evening, there weren't
many tourists around, and we rode and explored, and eventually decided
to come home. We had the trail pretty much all to ourselves, though
instead of the turtles that we'd seen in the canal on the trip earlier,
the only wildlife around seemed to be small ducks, until we spotted first
one, then another muskrat, head up out of the water, nibbling on... well,
whatever muskrats nibble on, I guess.
I hadn't seen them around before, and
you know it's bound to be a good day when you can call "muskrat!"
We went out and had a decent dinner
at Outback after just missing dinner at a place I like a lot more in Frederick.
Our evening was thus overwhelmed in pseudo-Australianisms.
Suzanne had to get up to go home (and
to work) way too early. I didn't even think my alarm clock knew how
to go off at 3:00am, but it did, so Suzanne collected up some of her stuff,
gathered some fresh mint to give to her rabbits at home, and went off into
It's OK, she'll be back on Friday. I
The black Volkswagen is spending the
day at the garage getting inspected and getting a couple of minor things
done... light bulbs, wiper blades, and a brake rotor. Nothing major,
and certainly less than I expected. I still have to fool with one
of the rear seat belt assemblies in order for it to pass, but I can do
that tonight after work, then take it over and get it reinspected tomorrow
and thence to MVA for new plates. It's been on the policy since Friday,
so pretty much that flat steel thing is all I need.
It's a good little car... pulls strong
up hills on the highway even in fifth gear. It swallowed an astonishing
eighteen gallons of fuel yesterday, though it was nice to spend $2.99 for
#2 diesel instead of $3.09 for unleaded regular. It'll be even nicer
to get over 800 miles out of that tank instead of barely 400 out of the
gas tank in the red Passat.