Monday, February 20, 2006

Taxes

I spent my entire morning doing taxes, but I got them done. Phew. I'm glad it's over with. We needed to be home anyway, because we had a malfunctioning heater and I was afraid the house would burn down, taking all my kimono with it. Oh, I guess I was worried Chris and the cat would fry, too. Yeah.

Anyhoo, our main heater in the livingroom kept cutting out due to some malfunction and when I got up on Sunday morning, the ambient temprature downstairs was about 39 degrees. Not good. We managed to Macgyver the heater to get it working until today, when the landlady could come out and look at it. The fix consisted of soundly thumping the kerosene tank feed, which we had done already. We knew to do this, because our neighbor had problems with her tank, too, and the gas company repairman told her that sometimes the valves stick, so thump it. So we fixed it ourselves and the repairman said if it sticks again, to call and the heater will be replaced. You'd be suprised how many things a sound thumping will fix, everything from heaters to a husband who leaves his dirty boxers on the bedroom floor (heh heh heh).

People ask about the kerosene heat a lot. It doesn't smell bad like most people think--I think the heating kero is more refined. It makes the house really dry though and for some reason, causes a lot of dust to be generated. No, we don't have central heating. There are small heaters in the upstairs rooms and the downstairs has one big heater in the corner of the living room. The cat totally hogs the space in front of it, too. The kitchen and bathroom are unheated. Fine for the kitchen, because how often am I in there? However, an unheated bathroom royally sucks, so we have a 900watt halogen heater to heat it. The toilet seat is heated, too, which is nice--most of the time (except when you have a misadventure).

After the heater checked out OK, Chris and I ran some errands. On the way to my kimono lesson, we stopped by a local car dealership to purchase a vehicle for me. During the course of this, Chris managed to get the truck stuck in a snowbank. And I mean stuck. The amount of snow hid the steep slope of the back lot, so the RVR went in and didn't come out. The snowbank just scoffed at our 4 wheel drive, and all the usual tricks (cat litter for traction, blanket, traction grips) did NOTHING. After fighting the good fight for 45 minutes, we finally relented and got the dealer to tow us out. Unbelievable. Chris was pretty embarassed, but all that matters is that we got unstuck without having to wait for a spring thaw (which would be, oh, about JUNE).

So now I am the almost-owner of a cute black Pajero Junior. I got 730 dollars off the sticker price. I'm happy with that, but now the paperwork begins...urgh.

Because of the whole RVR excavation, I was sort late to my lesson today, but I did call and let Eiko-san know. The last time I was late (I thought I was supposed to come at 2pm and she thought noon) Eiko-san got worried about me. Hell, I worry about me. Anyway, my kimono lesson consisted of being shown two crazy-ass obi knots. I can't even describe the first one, but the second one is a big bow-like affair. I managed to tie that one okay after a few tries. Poor Masako-san got yanked all around, because you really do have to wrestle this one. My bow looked like this:
Tomorrow, Eiko-san is teaching a yukata-wearing class. I get to help. Hoo boy.

1 comment:

lizajane said...

When my in-laws heated with kerosene, they always had a teakettle filled with water on it. Instant humidifier. Scott still has one in his shop, and I noticed an open pot on it last week, almost all the water boiled out.