So we went back to Virginia to see about our old house, which is now our rental house. This is a nine hour drive. All went fairly well. The kid was occupied with the Xoom, the dsi, and watching Meet the Robinsons. At the end, however, we were entertained with renditions of The Death March, the Star Spangled Banner, and an unnamed tune, all sung to a chorus of meows. No words. Just meows. I think that was the part where I flung myself out of the car and into a ditch while the car was going 70 MPH. (No, wait. I just imagined doing that. I didn't really do it.) (Somewhere my mother is giggling in her grave. "I told you one day you would have a child just like you and I would laugh," her ghost said at that moment.)
We counted 15 VW Beetles and 19 Cracker Barrels along the 679 mile trip. Next time, I think I will make a column for all the fast food restaurants. There was a slew of Wendys, a tribe of McDonalds, a spattering of Sonics, and a butt load of Burger Kings. That is a shitload of French fries, let me tell you.
Upon arriving at the motel, we ate (from Wendys), and the kid wanted to go swimming in the pool. (Of course.) The motel had mysteriously lost its hot tub since the last time we were there. (We spent a few days there last year and a whopping 57 days there when we moved to Virginia and were house hunting. You'd think those people would remember us. Really.) They lost the hot tub and the buffet and added a Starbucks. A Starbucks INSIDE a motel. (I'm relating Starbucks to The Invasion of the Body Snatchers now except with vente lattes instead of pods. Very insidious.)
The next day we headed to our old house, hoping that all would be well. All was mostly well. I was surprised that it was so well. I should be thankful. The tenants swiped the shower curtain rings and the washing machine hoses but amazingly all was whole and without holes in the walls. Two closet doors were broken and a knob had mysteriously vanished, but hey, it wasn't too bad.
Then the dryer vent cleaner people came. That was okay. They also did the chimney.
Then the water heater guy came. Although I had already paid for it, it was the water heater that keeps on paying. Apparently we were so out of code that our water heater might just as well been a log fire and a kettle hung over the top of it. After several hours of banging around while we chopped branches, fixed the closet doors, replaced filters, knobs, and made sure everything was okay, the guy was finished. EXCEPT THE TENANTS HAD THE GAS TURNED OFF and we couldn't test the water heater. AND THE GAS COMPANY COULDN'T TURN THE GAS BACK OUT FOR ANOTHER THREE DAYS. AND THE WATER HEATER GUY JUST KIND OF, SORT OF, MENTIONED, WE WOULD NEED AN INSPECTION AND WE WOULD HAVE TO WAIT FOR IT. Not only would we have to wait for it, but we had an 8 hour block because they couldn't be bothered to narrow it down to a few hours.
I went out to the car to cry.
So after my brief breakdown, we decided to go back to Alabama, where we would rest up and HIM, the man to whom I'm married, would return to Virginia to have the gas company turn on the gas and then he would light the pilot lights so the house wouldn't explode.
HIM went back today and got a speeding ticket for doing 80 MPH in a 70 zone. He said the officer was younger than Cressy. HIM was hoping that I would get a speeding ticket before him so he could giggle over it. I haven't gotten one for thirty years. So much for that.
Anyway, we've already rented the house out. I loathe being a landlord. I wouldn't wish this job on my worst enemy.
Going to see fireworks now. Pretty lights will make everything better. EVERYTHING.
Happy fourth everyone! Don't speed. Also don't park next to a van without windows. Also, don't ever eat yellow snow.