Thursday, June 2, 2011

Fixer upper

Last summer we finally did something about our ramshackle, deteriorating landscaping in the front yard, putting up a new retaining wall and installing some grass.  Given how much needed to be done, the operation, modest as it was, exhausted our available resources and made a big difference right away.

Now we're ready to think about phase 2, installing some beds and features and reshaping the existing borders.  Another big operation, but summer is the time for such things.

It's also the time to make sure everything we use regularly -- like cars and computers -- is in good working order.  Naturally, when you start looking, you find things that need to be fixed.  After I wrote a week ago about needing a new MacBook Air sometime soon, the notoriously unreliable screen hinge cracked on me this morning (with an audible "snap").  And Noel, who's been having trouble with his iBook's trackpad, suddenly discovered the cause today -- a bulging battery, something we've never seen before but that has been a problem in various models for several years.  Noel's computer is still covered by AppleCare, and mine should be covered by a recall of these hinge assemblies that Apple announced earlier this year, but we'll see if we end up being out any money.

Summer is also the time of long car trips -- the most miles we put on our cars every year, given that we don't have commutes to speak of.  Both cars need checkups to make sure they're fully road-worthy.  And finally, following Noel's good example, I need to get on with a new general practitioner and have a full physical.  I'm back with my gynecologist and I've been in good health, but with aging knocking on my door I need to be ready.

There are a lot of things in our lives and property that need work.  We can't do all of them.  But isn't it nice that the summer is here, with its open calendar and vacation days, so that we can do some of them, making steady progress toward our responsibilities and our future.

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