This and That

On the Easel - Ghosttown International TruckAUGUST 25 UPDATE:

For those that regularly read my blog, you will have noticed that it has been incommunicado for the past three days. This is due to the total incompetence on the end of the web hosting company, MochaHost.

The site is still not fully functional – I cannot add new posts, for instance. The technical support crew from MochaHost has been less than forthcoming, refusing to respond to most of my inquiries or to offer any status updates.

Anyway – at least my email is functional, and the site looks like it is working to most observers.

In some personal news, it has been quite an exciting week. I have been stumping for the better part of the year looking for gainful employment. I have been pushing to get into a temp agency that does retail store resets. The pay is very good, and you get to pick and choose the jobs you want. I finally got a call for them last Sunday asking me if I was available for a job that coming Thursday. Hells Yeah! as soon as I hung up the phone after the interview, I logged into the account only to find that I had been scheduled for Monday through Wednesday at another job in Casa Grande, in addition to the job in Gilbert.

Anyway – I am now eligible for any of the jobs that I want – I am picking the ones that have a drive time of less than an hour. Well, last Wednesday I got a call from another job that I applied to (retail warehouse, and also part-time) and was asked if I could come in Thursday morning for an interview… well, since I was scheduled to work I opted for Friday. I start tomorrow morning, and with this job I will have three days a week guaranteed, with the flexibility to take the reset jobs as I feel.

That is pretty much the news for now. We are relaxing, waiting for the monsoon to roll in and flood our street tonight, preventing the construction crews from paving our street on Monday. That was supposed to have been completed in February…

It has been a busy week. With all the personal nonsense, I have found time for the easel – the Ghost Town Truck is progressing. It has a way to go, as I see many deficiencies from the photograph image that I miss in the studio. Frequent photographing of my paintings while in progress is a part of the process.

This week has been the week of car troubles. Liz’s nephew’s wife just started a new job in Phoenix, and part way into the second week, she gets home and tells Mike, “by the way, you need to look at my car, it is acting funny”. It turns out the cross-member that holds the engine in place has rusted out on one side and was just hanging – the car, being uni-body construction, was one bump away from leaving the engine on the highway…

Liz and I took turns driving Tami to work – I picked her up and about ten miles into the trip on the 202, the front end of my truck began vibrating like mad. Things were falling off the truck and banging underneath, and I saw them bouncing down the freeway behind me. I took the next exit and drove back home, slowly, and drove Tami to work in Liz’s Subaru. I was freaking, because I was expecting the worst.

Meanwhile, the next day when Liz went to pick Tami up, she was stuck in the daily Friday afternoon parking lot that the 202 becomes, and her car began to overheat. In 119 degree heat, on the freeway in “parked” mode, she turned on the car heater and rolled the windows down.  The temperature gauge receded, and on the drive back there was no problem.

Saturday I chauffeured Tami to the car lot where she picked up reliable transportation. In the end, all worked out well. Mike got the pickup truck he always wanted but never got because he settled for the less expensive sedans.

The vibration in my truck was the tread separating from the front tire – a bad case of Arizona Tire Affliction. The dry heat destroys all things rubber, cloth, vinyl, whatever. The tire had begun to dry rot and chunks of the tread began flying off on the 202 at 70 MPH. A trip to the used tire store in AJ where I replaced three tires (obviously the one that began to self-destruct, and two others that has dry rot cracks) and the truck is fine.

Today Mike and Tami came by, and Mike and I replaced the thermostat on Liz’s car, so all vehicles are now fine. When all this was going down, Liz said, all things have a reason. Well, that might be so. Today I applied for a job through a temp agency that I have been trying to get into for three months. When I logged into my account, I was surprised to see that I was scheduled for a job.  I did the phone interview today, and was hired. It would have been sort of crappy to have my tire explode while driving to my first day on a new job – their instructions are quite clear that they do not accept tardiness of personnel that cannot work a full day.

So, everything worked out, but it was a stressful several days. I really needed the dry martinis last night, as I enjoyed the light show over the Superstitions. We experienced a lightning storm and high winds that blew away a lot of the heat from the record high temperatures that are taxing everyone’s air conditioning units this week.


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