Monday, October 18, 2004
Start the week with a bang
I planned to take the morning off today, that makes it a pretty good Monday morning. The carpet guys are supposed to show up some time between 0730 and 0830 so even though I had waken up at 0500, I sleep in till 0630 but still have time to spare. Jacob had woken up at 0500 and the wife wobbled off to sleep with him on the futon for an hour or so. We are not sure why he does this, and we are aware that we are reinforcing the behavior by caving in to his demands, but once we get the other room ready and separate them, the whole baby monitor thing will come to an end. 'Bout time, they are getting a little too old for that business.
The reason I'm staying home this morning is so that I can be available for the Carpeting Guys to come and install the runners. The fabled stair and hall runners will finally make their final leg into our grand Manor and be pressed into history. The ETA is some time between 0730 and 0830 ... they arrive at 0820 only because I head outside and see a tan van slowly circling the access street. This is either a terrorist van packed with explosives, nukes and bad english or the carpet guys. I take the risk and make my way down to them to acknowledge that this is the place they are looking for. The van does not blow up, but pulls over to the side of the street. Small victories. Jeff and his cohort pile out of the van and introduce themselves as the guys who Frank sent to install the runners. I escort them in through the main portcullis and into the Manor. The minute one of them spoke, the Happy Hounds became concerned and immediately started to bark and skitter about the tile floors. No amount of coaxing and stern warnings would quiet them down. I eventually let them out back so that they could tear up the lawn and harass each other instead of annoying everyone in the house. Jeff and co made short work of the runners and were out of there within an hour. All the while, bang-bang-bang with the staple hammer. The end results are masterful and aesthetically pleasing. Quite a bit less than the original estimate of four hours! I guess it was a Scotty swag. I toyed with going to work, but since it was already 0930, I might as well stay home and get some stuff done. My company has a peculiar time-off policy. You must take vacation/sick time in four hour increments and if you work less than a four hour block, it comes out of your vacation. Soooo, if I work 7 hours, it would count as 4 hours of work and 4 hours of vacation. Same as if I only worked 3 hours : 8 hours of vacation. Bogus? You bet. Here is the kicker, we still bill the customer for that time ... net profit for my company. Bastards. Of course, we all cook the books a bit. If I'm short an hour one day, I'll make it up over the rest of the week. As long as we don't put it on paper, it's frowned upon but not discouraged. The pay is good and I get 4 weeks of vacation, one week of sick time, 2 personal holidays and all the other usual company holidays. No complaints.
On my mini-vacation, I pretty much did a bunch of stuff about the house. Laundry, scrub shower, clean up kitchen table, wash dishes (twice), take out trash, recycling, distribute toilet paper to various locations in the Manor. Mostly lots of laundry. I tried to fold as much of my own stuff while laying out the Wifes things. Some of her more dainty articles are a mystery to me. How do you fold those things? She never liked the way I folded the laundry and usually ends up refolding it anyways. Personally, I really don't care how my underwear is squared away. Origami it is not. As soon as the micro-vacation started, it is over. I bring in the hounds and lock them down at 1130 and get on the road. The traffic is predictably light, but since I am not familiar with the state police that patrol at this hour, I take it easy and stay below the speed of sound. Work is dull, just some miscommunication on some orders that needed explaining. How to spread that over four hours was the challenge. Perhaps, there will be adventure to be had on Tuesday.