Thursday, December 07, 2006

Historic Date

I started out this morning, wending my way through my blog and reading the posts of others today - those I have linked to my blog. This process can be a long drawn out affair because I really enjoy reading these other blogs, they are getting to be somewhat numerous on my site and I usually find something to comment about on each post too. That alone can take quite a long time. But, when you also add in the slowness of my computer and how many times my provider might bump me off, it really takes a very long time for me to get through with that process.

Because last night Mandy reminded me that the kids will be at the sitter's today and I will have the house to myself to do with whatever I wish, she felt it would be a good day for me to tackle some sewing projects I might want to do for Christmas and such. Not a bad idea if she'd said something to me about the day and house being mine to play with before she did. You see, before I begin to sew, it sometimes takes me a couple of days in advance to decide what it is I will want to make, trim up the pattern, get it all cut out and then start the actual sewing process. So, I'm still mulling over in my mind what I might want to sew today.

Then, there is also the issue of the dr's appointment I have tomorrow in Pittsburgh and the snow that is now falling much heavier than before and do I want to take the chance to drive to Pittsburgh tomorrow? Is this appointment REALLY that important to chance a 140 mile drive on roads that could, by tomorrow morning, be really, really treacherous? I had already decided I was going to call the dr and tell the people there it would be highly unlikely that I would be keeping that appointment. Howeve, Mandy just called to tell me the grandson is having a lot of "issues" today - either has a nasty head cold coming on or it could be from the teething too - but his nose is really very, very yucky and she is in the process of making an appointment for him at the family doctor's office. So, that now answer my questions about keeping the apointment tomorrow, since she is my chauffeur. We will not be there!

Not being fully awake, aware of what today is when I started my blog reading process this morning and also, not having thought of a topic to write about today either, when I came to the blog "Turning The Pages of Life" and Gene's topic today is a very serious one - not his usual humorous take on life and events - it gave me food for thought.

His topic is Pearl Harbor. Whether we were alive and of an age to actually remember that event or not, who doesn't know what Pearl Harbor Day means to almost everyone? I'm not quite old enough to have been around then (close, but no cigar) but I know from stories I heard as a child from my Mom, grandparents; articles I have read in history books, newspapers, etc., to say nothing of the media reports every year about the impact the bombing of Pearl Harbor had on this country and world-wide. It was, to quote FDR, "A day that will live in infamy" and to quote Gene in his blog, "A day that defined the United States." How true! And, if you've ever seen the movie - I think it is "The Court Martial of Billy Mitchell" (it was just on the movie channel on our cable the other night, anyway, and I caught some of it before I went to sleep) but Col. Billy Mitchell had actually predicted that Pearl Harbor would be bombed and by Japan too about two decades before it happened. Of course, no one in the military community believed him about that or any of the other things he believed needed changed within the military either and they court martialed him for his beliefs! Incredible, isn't it?

But December 7th is also an anniversary date, of sorts, for me and my family too - aside from remembering it pertaining to history. December 7, 1979 was the date that my kids and I moved from the house my ex and I had built into the home that had been my Mom's residence, my childhood home, my grandparents home - built in 1903! It was a big move too - from the house next door into this one but it took a heck of a lot of work to do that anyway and I decided then and there that I never want to move again!

But, the day we actually moved in was something else! Anything and everything imaginable seemed destined to go wrong here!

It began with the people from Sears bringing the new refrigerator and stove I had purchased to replace the 30-40 year old models Mom had here. No problems installing the refrigerator but when they removed the old stove -a gas relic - and put in the new electric unit (complete with a microwave above the range top, which by the way, was a Corning glass top), and they went to plug the stove in, one of the installers asked me if I had a "pigtail." I had no clue what he was talking about but he then explained that it was the cord that goes from the stove into the plug in the wall. I was stunned! You mean to tell me they sell the stove and it arrives with no cord and plug? Yep, that's how they do it - you have to order the pigtail separately! Not having time -or money either - to run and purchase a "pigtail" it dawned on me that the stove in the house next door, that we were moving from had an electric stove so I went over there, removed that pigtail and brought it here, they connected it up and voila, my stove was in place and plugged in.

While this was going on though, there was an emergency situation about to break loose in the basement where the "cable guy" (no, not Larry) was down there trying to install the necessary cable here (no reception at all in this gully without it) and while he was wandering around with his cable stuff, he stepped on the copper tubing that goes between my fuel oil tank and the furnace, snapping it in half! This of course let loose gallons of fuel oil - not cheap then either but less expensive than today - and it was slopping all over the basement floor and fumes permeating the upstairs too. I had to call the furnace repairman who came down, stopped the flow, plugged off the tube but didn't have the necessary components that day to fix the thing. So, that night we had heat we needed but it was because he gerryrigged the tube from the fuel tank into a bucket and from there to the furnace! What a mess though. The bad thing about this was that I had just the day before had the fuel people come and fill that tank and here was about half of that delivery running all over my basement floor. The good thing - the cable company paid for a full tank of oil to compensate for the loss of the fuel and other damages to the fuel lines, etc.

Now, if you think that was all that happened to us that day, think again!

Remember that lovely new stove I had delivered and installed that day? Well, when the installers were finished, I didn't try the stove out then. Just took it for granted that it was in, had current capability to it now since I had swiped the other pigtail for it and all was well. WRONG! That evening, about 5 p.m., tired but hungry with three kids who were by now starving, I went to start cooking supper. Imagine my surprise when I turned on the burner on the stove and there was nothing happening. The damned stove didn't work! Ok, I called a friend who is an electrician and who had also done a lot of wiring work to the house to ready it for our occupancy and he came down to check this problem out. It turned out the problem was actually that electrician's doing - as when he had worked on the wiring and had things all set up for the electric stove, new breaker just for it, etc., he had neglected to finish up the connectivity part there which was causing me to have no current flowing through to the stove.

Ok, those problems were petty, very, very minor in comparison to Pearl Harbor. I'll be the very first to say the only thing that compares to Pearl Harbor would have to be the attacks on the World Trade Center on 9-11. Another day that also lives in infamy for sure.

But in my little corner of the world, stressed out as I was trying to move furniture, clothing, food products - everything from the house next door into this place - plus the added pressures of being separated at the time from my soon-to-be ex-husband, Christmas just around the corner, no steady job and still dealing with the loss of my Mom two months earlier, in my mind that day then and still does make me this was my own personal version of "Pearl Harbor, revisited."

And now, with high hopes that nothing drastic will go wrong on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor today, I'm off to try and figure out what to sew - and of course, what to cook for supper tonight. Unfortunately, in both those aspects, today is another "Brain Dead" day!


Mike said...

I got to watch some of the History Channel with the Pearl Harbor footage this evening. It still fascinates me even though it was a tragic loss. It got America motivated.

Vic Grace said...

I understand what you are saying about getting bumped off the internet and the slowness. I am dealing with the same. I had thought a new computer might help but was told it didn't matter dial up is alway slow.

East of Oregon said...

My kids and me watched history shows last night on Pearl Harbor (can't remember if it was actually the History Channel - might've been A&E or something else). It was so interesting and sad. It's important to remember.