Wednesday, April 29, 2009

On friends and good tools

I went for a long and speedy walk this morning, eschewing my usual iPod companion for the sweet sounds of neighborhood birds.  It felt so good to get out of the house and into the fresh air after so many bedridden days.  The dark and puffy sky looked like rain, and we could sure use it, but we'll see.  Such clouds have a way of scudding by until they break on the distant mountains, leaving the coastlands dry.  I can feel the residual congestion settling lower in my chest, so it was also nice to go exercise the lungs, too.   Hopefully I can keep this cough from lingering.

I spent a quiet lunch time with my team today.  I've worked with this team of engineers for years, and we're good friends.  We spent the time joking around, telling stories, and enjoying each other's company.  There are all kinds of healing.  Thanks guys.

After six years in this house, we're finally putting a mantel over the fireplace.  We found a place in town that sells reclaimed lumber; enormous beams from old barns and other large buildings.  We bought ourselves a hand-hewn 11" x 7" x 84" beauty, rubbed it down with two coats of dark wax stain, and had a friend-of-a-friend make four hefty wrought iron brackets to hold the 150lbs of wood on the wall.  Our good friend, the general contractor who transformed our house from a 1960's shag-carpeted wood-paneled dotard into a 21st century open-floorplan abode, came by tonight to help us hang the log.

Let me tell you, folks, the right tools make all the difference.  Thirty minutes with his roto-hammer made short work of sinking a dozen half-inch holes in the fireplace brick.  And most of that time was debating the eventual height of the mantel, laying everything out and cleaning up after.  The holes in the brackets, which go through 1/4" of iron, need a little re-drilling.  He's taking them to a friend's metal shop tomorrow to go at them with a drill press and cutting oil.  So, yes, the right tools make a big difference.  But good friends are downright powerful.  Thank you, my friend.  Couldn't have done this without you.

Food log:
Breakfast: a cup of granola with ground flax seeds and 1% milk, and half an Oroblanco grapefruit.  Oh. My. Goodness.  This is the sweetest, tastiest grapefruit I've ever tried.  More please!

Lunch: one carrot, half a red pepper, and about 1/3c of the new hummus.  A turkey and provolone sandwich on whole grain bread.  One square of Belgian chocolate.

Dinner: leftover Beef and Bok Choy Hot Pot, and a glass of 1% milk.

Snacks: an apple

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