Sunday, October 07, 2007


By the time this week ended, our problems from last weekend seemed trivial!

Sunday night we went to bed hoping that the coming week would be better. How naive we were! I awoke at 1:37 a.m. to my alarm clock blinking. Hmm...I must have slept through a thunderstorm that disrupted the power. I got up, put on my glasses, and turned on the bedroom light to re-set my clock. UH-OH...the light was too dim to see the clock controls....WTF?! I went to the kitchen, where the lights were also dim. Then the lights brightened...for a couple of minutes, then they dimmed again. I called my parents, who live 2 blocks away, to see if they were having power problems. Nope, their power was fine. I then called the power company and reported my problem on an automated server. Within an hour, a line-truck was in our driveway. We were getting full power to the main entrance box on our pole. The problem was ours. SHIT!!

L and I stayed up the rest of the night. My alarm clock wouldn't work, so I didn't dare go back to sleep and miss getting up for work at 5:00 a.m. We had to manually open our garage doors to get the vehicles out of the garage, as there wasn't enough power for the door openers to work. I also went to my parents' house to pick up their dog, Shadow. My parents would be out of town for 3 days, so Shadow would be staying with us.

L called our electrician first thing Monday morning. He was also here within an hour, bless his heart!! He quickly found that we had full power coming out of our entrance box, BUT we were only getting 1/2 power at the other end of our underground line. This meant that the underground line needed to be replaced. Naturally, this is THE most expensive item that could have failed. By mid-afternoon Monday, we had 150 ft of new, conduit encased power line, running across the top of our yard. The picture above shows our lovely, new, gray yard ornament.

We're now waiting for the ditch-witch guy to come and bury the line. The grass had just started filling in over the trenching work from last summer, when they wired our garage. Now, next spring, we get to smooth out and seed an additional 150 ft of trenching.

By now I'll bet you're thinking that things can't get much worse, aren't you? WRONG!!
When I came home from work Tuesday, Shadow wanted to go out. I tied her out and didn't even make it to the kitchen before Hairry started frantically barking from his vantage point on our bed. I looked out the kitchen window and saw the dog that has been visiting us every couple of weeks for the last year. Shadow was on her hind legs, at the end of the chain, barking and snapping at the dog. I immediately went out and pulled Shadow back into the house. (For a background on Shadow's aggressive personality, check out my 12/3/06 post.)

Shadow laid down on the living room floor and started licking herself. It was raining at the time, so I didn't think anything of this behavior. Within a few minutes, Z came to me and said:"We've got a problem. Shadow needs to go to the vet!" Sure enough; Shadow's skin was flayed open from the middle of her chest to a point beneath her front left leg, about 7 inches long. I immediately called the vet. Unfortunately, our vet was at his other clinic....100 miles away! The vet's assistant called him, then told me to bring Shadow in so she could assess the wound.

The strange thing is, there was no blood! The stray dog had apparently attacked Shadow, but we hadn't heard ANY fight noises. Hairry discovered additional puncture wounds on the back of Shadow's neck.

The vet's assistant gave Shadow an antibiotic shot and wanted to keep her overnight, so the vet could stitch her up first thing Wednesday morning. I knew that Shadow wouldn't eat or rest while kenneled next to strange dogs, so I convinced the assistant to let me take her back home for the night. Hairry was a very attentive nurse to Shadow. He followed her around, with a worried look on his face, while licking the wounds on her neck.

L took Shadow back to the vet first thing Wednesday morning. Since the wound had already started to heal, the vet needed to perform surgery to debride and stitch the wound. We arranged for me to pick Shadow up when I brought Hairry in for shots on Wednesday afternoon. In the meantime, my parents returned from their trip. It wasn't fun explaining what happened to their beloved dog!

By Friday, Shadow was running around like her normal self. My parents are trying to restrain her, but I think that puts more pressure on her stitches.

In addition to our other trials, work was a ZOO on Friday and Saturday!! Our new day dishwasher can't come to work until 9:00, so I have to wash dishes and wait tables. I also had to bake 4 pans of bars and a pumpkin pie for a catering job.

We had planned on insulating and sheeting the south wall of our garage yesterday afternoon. By the time I got home from work, I was too exhausted to attempt this task. I couldn't have pounded in a nail if my life depended on it.

Today is the start of a new week. Wish us luck!


At 10/07/2007 8:41 AM, Blogger Gardenia said...

Good gosh and I thought my luck was bad!

Aren't those gray boxes ugly - they must be sort of universal now - ours in this relatively new subdivision are out by the street - not a pretty sight by any means.

I hope your parents weren't mad, you can't help it that some people don't take care of their animals and let them roam free - whoever owns that dog owes you money for vet and a BIG apology!

At 10/07/2007 10:01 AM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Gardenia, we're having our entrance box replaced too. They don't make fuses for the ancient one we have anymore. :(

My parents are all hot to find the dog's owner. I'm hoping we don't find out. This could get ugly.

At 10/07/2007 2:15 PM, Blogger Cherie said...

Oh good grief. LIFE!

Once again our lives parallel. We want to completely finish one project when Joe's car requires an overhaul, so we...stop.....and take a week to do that. Two weekends shot. But he needs his car - and you need electricity.

Surprising inconveniences like this make me TRY to understand patience, but it sure TRIES my patience.

I hope the dog thing just blows over. Did you really call your folks in the middle of the night? And they were coherent? Mine would have been too muddled to think straight.

Good luck!

At 10/07/2007 4:40 PM, Blogger Squirl said...

You poor thing! I hope this is the end of your run of bad luck. I'm also glad that Shadow wasn't hurt any worse. Hurrah for Hairry's getting your attention quickly.

At 10/07/2007 5:06 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

Cherie, somebody once said that "life is what happens while you're making plans". Life tends to happen quite a bit around here.
I felt bad for calling my parents, but my Dad's an electrician and I needed some answers. They didn't go back to bed, and they were leaving on a trip at 7:00 a.m. Oops!

Squirl, Hairry loves EVERYBODY! Shadow hates other dogs, but she's come to accept Hairry as part of the family, as long as he accepts the fact that she's the boss. Now, when they're together, Shadow sleeps with her butt up against Hairry. They're really comical to watch. ;)

At 10/07/2007 10:30 PM, Blogger SME said...

That was John Lennon, Mom. (Are you SURE I'm not adopted?!)

At 10/07/2007 11:07 PM, Blogger Jay said...

So fun times, eh?
Next week has GOT to be better, but on the other hand, maybe you should just hide under your bed just in case.

At 10/08/2007 12:03 AM, Blogger MonicaR said...

Oh, man. Definitely one to be chalked up as a bad week. So sorry. I hope that things calm down and go as planned for once!

Hang in there. You're doing a beautiful job dealing with it all.

At 10/08/2007 7:57 AM, Blogger tweetey30 said...

Wow. Poor pooch. And poor you guys. that is terrible. We need to replace the toilet in the bathroom. Its leaking but not real bad right now so we are waiting till not this payday but the following payday to see what we can do about it.But I suppose I should be going and taking Kora to her Dental appt. Talk later and Have a great week. N.

At 10/08/2007 1:21 PM, Blogger Shawn said...

Wow...what a truly sucky week. Hope this one is much, much, much better.

At 10/08/2007 3:29 PM, Blogger Pam said...


When you have a bad day, you mean business!

I hope you have a really, really, REALLY nice week. You've earned it.

At 10/08/2007 6:12 PM, Blogger Bridget Jones said...

Oh you poor babies! Wishing all of you, including four footed family members, the best of luck in the coming week. Poor Shadow. Are you sure it was a dog (not other wild animal)? Anyway, you got attention for her quick and that's what counts. And glad that the electricity thing got caught quickly too (e.g. that your food didn't defrost). Here's to hoping that you got all of the excitement out of the way for the next few months (((((hugs))))))

At 10/08/2007 7:44 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

SME, sorry, but you're stuck with our weird genes. ;)

Jay, that's what I said on Monday night. Then the dog got chewed up on Tuesday. If this week doesn't improve, you'll find me huddled in a fetal position in the closet. ;)

Monica, thanks! I held everything together pretty well until Sunday. Then I just felt numb...and tired.

Tweets, you can probably fix your toilet for less than $10. Don't buy a new one until you check out a few things. Where is it leaking?

Shawn, last week is going down as one of my top 10 worst weeks!

Pam, I don't do ANYTHING halfway! ;)

Bridg, it was broad daylight and I saw the other dog near Shadow.
The one bright spot in the electrical mess is that our shed, where we have the freezer, is on a separate line from the house and garage.
I sure hope that we filled our disaster quota for the year! ;)

At 10/08/2007 9:49 PM, Blogger SME said...

Dangit. ;D

At 10/09/2007 8:04 AM, Blogger Vancouver Voyeur said...

Wow, thanks for putting my life in perspective. I hate it when crap happens and especially hate it when it happens a number of times. I'd like to ask the universe, "are you trying to kill me?" I don't know how you handle all the stress, apparently, very gracefully. I stand in awe at your resiliance. I hope nothing else goes wrong and that life throws you a bone and something good happens for a change.

At 10/09/2007 9:12 AM, Blogger tweetey30 said...

Its not the plunger but the little piece that sits on the whole when you flush. The toilet has been in the house since it was built. In 1932. So they have to go sometime. I wish they lasted forever.. LOL... Anyway if you have a suggestion let me know please. Call or e-mail me with a suggestion or Jeff for that matter. Thanks N.

At 10/09/2007 11:18 AM, Blogger Hammer said...

that is terrible!

I feel bad for your dog. Hope he gets better soon.

At 10/09/2007 2:55 PM, Blogger tshsmom said...

SME, it sucks to be you, doesn't it? ;)

VV, after all the disasters that have happened to us over the last 30 yrs, I've learned not to dwell on them. Worrying only creates more stress.

The best way to cope with disasters is to figure out the cheapest and fastest way to overcome the problem. Inaction fosters depression, and I don't have time for that right now.
I also ALWAYS have a $2000 emergency fund put away.

Tweets, all you need to fix your problem is a new set of toilet tank works. This will run you less than $10. Sometimes you can find a kit on sale for $5.
Have Jeff go online. There are hundreds of sites that will guide him through this step-by-step. L can change the works in a toilet in about 10 minutes.
Toilet repair is one of the most important skills a homeowner can learn!
BTW, toilets WILL last forever if you don't crack the porcelain by overtightening the bolts.

Hammer, my parents' dog is the one who got hurt. She's doing fine now, and gets her stitches out on Friday.
I'm hoping that this will teach her not to challenge every HUGE dog she sees, but I doubt it.


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