The Weekend; Upcoming Vacation and Stuff…

I had a bad weekend. Besides yesterday. I guess this part should have gone in yesterday’s entry, but it wouldn’t flow too well.

I went with Brandon and saw his friend again. They’re both contagious; something about those two… But, um, when it’s four o’clock on Sunday morning; when you’ve been occupying someone’s bed and get downstairs, and the person who normally sleeps in this bed asks, “how are you,” I don’t think, “I’ve been better,” is the answer they’re looking for. Especially when they have that little smile on their face…and then ask why. If he wasn’t Brandon’s friend, I’d tell him, but I don’t want to get too, um, honest I guess. Because he doesn’t want to hear it. Honestly, it has nothing to do with the “fun” or anything, just with one of the four things I like best about him. Wait, that shouldn’t be a problem, but it is. I tell him it’s a lot of stuff and hard to explain.

I get home, and I’m afraid I’d have a mom bitching at me. Luckily…she saved it for later that afternoon. I get to bed and all I can do is think. Mind you, I had been up for a full day and really, really wanted to get to bed. My thought mindlessly wandered. Until, I got really, really sick, then realized it was too late to find my trash basket.

Back out of bed, clean myself up, want to go to bed. And then I think I cried myself to sleep…

…because I don’t remember anything (who does?) from the time I put my head back on the pillow. I woke up five hours later, and my eyes are glued shut with the eye junk. Which means, yes, I must have cried, a lot.

I was sick all day yesterday. Only ate noodle soup/chicken broth and Sprite. My stomach was upset with everything that happened yesterday. I got sleep last night, but only after battling with my sobbing spell again. I don’t like it because I don’t feel like “me” when it happens.

I finally got some “answers” today; it was the first day of the new counseling. And I guess there’s a name for what I might “have.” Something called adjustment disorder with anxiety and depression. Now, that’s a mouthful. But as she explained it, very easy to treat since it’s not the kind of depression/anxiety that’s been “stuck in me” for years. The only thing I don’t like is having to wait another two weeks for an appointment. But I’ll cope, somehow.

——

I’ve decided where I want to go for my birthday! My mom and I are going to drive to Corpus Christi, Texas, in late July. The only thing we have to do is make contact with my uncle, who lives in the area. Our hotel of choice will depend on where my uncle lives. Communicating with my uncle isn’t as easy as it sounds. We don’t know where he lives, and we don’t know where he works, except that he is waiting tables at one of the many Pizza Huts the city has.

This will be my third visit. The first visit was the summer between seventh and eighth grades, and the second was shortly after my sixteenth birthday.

Oh, how could I, or anyone, forget our first visit? This was one of those “spur-of-the-moment” decisions my parents made, and the trip wasn’t fun, but extremely interesting, to say the least. (This was the trip I wrote a multiple-page personal essay on.) You know, the one that ended up us having a marathon ride back home because of some many problems with the van? I’d share more, but this is a story that should be told on it’s own…

My second visit wasn’t fun, either. Mainly because my uncle’s friend’s car broke down and we couldn’t go to the beach or anything. Mostly stayed in his apartment…and did nothing except eat authentic Mexican food (courtesy of his roommate) and watch some television. And I’ll never forget that spokeswoman who kept saying “We guarantee it!” like, “wee gear-in tee it?” Maybe someone from the area knows what/who I’m talking about…

The Painting Story; Missing Pay; A Driving Story

I keep meaning to ask my mom when the owner of the paint company, that painted three of our walls, is coming over.

Maybe I should start from the beginning. My mom had a local painting company come and give an estimate for three of our walls, each being a double-height wall. (Not that it matters, but that’s why we hired someone — we didn’t have the tools to do the high walls.) I had school the day they came over, so I never met the painters, but from what my mom has told me, they arrived at eight o’clock in the morning. This is what happened:

1. They open the paint on a drop cloth.
2. They paint the walls.
3. My mom checks in on them and they’re on the other side of the wall.
4. The painters go to lunch.
5. As soon as the painters come back from lunch, they clean up and go home.

My mother and I are convinced:

They didn’t follow the contract.

My mom wrote a letter, and the painting company owner admitted, “It’s a self-priming paint, we applied two coats of paint. If two coats had not been applied, white would show through.”

So, that’s what my mom and I did. Even though I feel like I’m legally blind without my glasses, (!! and my prescription isn’t that strong !!) we suck our noses in front of each of the painted walls. And guess what? It’s showing through white! Even on the grey wall, which is very, very hard to tell, you can see white specks. We’re using his words against him: You did not apply two coats of paint because the walls are showing through as white. (They’re not – they appear to have color, but each section has white specks.)

Anyone want pictures? 🙂 clicky here and clickyyyy here

My mom is also getting them for breach of contract. The contract stated drop clothes would be used to cover ALL flooring and ALL furnishings, yet they came in here not using any at all because “there was no risk of getting paint on the floor.” Oh, sure. Just because we don’t have flooring, just particle board, on our main level does NOT mean you don’t have to cover it. And what about the carpet? We had carpet on the upstairs. Don’t tell me old carpet that is supposed to be white-ish turned gray-ish isn’t “flooring.” The painters might get the impression that we don’t care about our house, but we’re using them, the painters, to make our house prettier so we feel better about it!

The contract also stated sand/prep/prime…two coats of paint — not do half-assed work on repairs and two top coats. (Which we already know they didn’t do because paint doesn’t dry in ten minutes.)

The owner even had the GUTS to tell us that we’re confusing “man hours” with “hours worked.” He said he brought two men in to get the job done within a day instead of two. I told my mom to put something to the extent of, “having a twelve-hour job with six men would not get the job done in two hours,” in her response.

My mom is going to: repair damage to a wall, prepare, and paint, before the owner comes over to PROVE her novice knowledge could get to job done better than these professionals. As much as I hate to admit it, my dad did a better job painting my bedroom than these “professionals” did painting our dining/living room.

That’s the painting story, for now, but that’s not it in the “legal” department!

I still don’t have my paycheck, still haven’t received a call. My mom reminded me at dinner the other night, “Your manager told you that you wouldn’t get paid.”

“What are you suggesting?”

“I think that bitch tossed your paycheck.”

Oh, right, and I bet she did. Even so, that doesn’t mean someone can’t get me a replacement. And I could care less how much it costs to stop the check. I told my mom to get the lawyer on the phone. It’s about time I get paid, and it’s about time I have someone help me get something “extra” from the company as penalization. The lawyer my mom originally talked to had some personal issues come up, so he referred us to someone else. They don’t think this issue should wait any longer.

Question for you:
What’s worse than driving at night and getting lost?

The answer:
Driving at night, somewhere you’ve been, but having a snowstorm reduce your visibility to a half mile and speed to thirty miles per hour.

I didn’t think it was that bad, until I came out of Wal-Mart with this thick coating of ICE on my windshield! Of course, on my way home, I got lost because the signs were covered in snow. And even if I felt like clearing them, it would do me any good since they “refuse” to put north/south/east/west directionals on them. So, I was stuck on these crappy, curving county roads, snow falling quickly…finally make it to the Interstate, then having an UN-“PROFESSIONAL” TRUCK DRIVER not “see me,” even though I was a nice mile ahead of him for a while, almost take me out because he was like three feet behind me. I don’t know, to give you an idea…it’s just me and him on the Interstate, plenty of room for him to hog the left lane…and I see out my back window ABSOLUTELY NOTHING but there’s a really nice glow inside my car.

At this point, I’m thinking, holy shit, he’s gonna hit me. He moves over, doesn’t even attempt to pass…so he positions his truck (I’m blaming this one on him) so that I’m in his blind spot. And he just keeps rolling WITH ME (because you know, we’re going downhill and certainly he should go down faster than me).

And then he pisses me off to no end. Practically rams me off the road because he veers out of his lane and gets my nice, clean car filthy with 1,000 gallons of road spray. And I can’t see shit.

Wouldn’t you know…the truck that was next to me that whole time was from the company that has the most unsatisfactory safety rating in Minnesota. And let me tell you, I stay as far away from them as possible because THEY DRIVE LIKE THEY’RE DRIVING A CAR. “Car-mentality” is what it’s called.

I also encountered a bad UPS driver 🙁 Made me feel really sad because they’re pretty good…

Sunday Leisurely Drive

Sunday was a very eventful day. Just like my dad and I planned, we went for a drive to Iowa. My dad wanted to see a unique geological feature in southwestern Minnesota, and the highest point in Iowa. I woke up a bit after seven in the morning, and we took off from there. My dad sat in the backseat of the van and I started driving. My dad first woke up when we were just outside the seven county metro area. I started talking to myself, saying things like, “seeing that kills me.”

Yes, seeing someone riding a bicycle in flip-flops or open-toe shoes/sandals makes me want to scream my head off. I don’t want to imagine what it feels like to stub your bare toes on pavement. Not to mention, I’m sure it hurts to no end if one of your toes were to get caught in the wheel spokes!

I was very tempted to go to a state park which is home to a maintained ghost town. (Oxymoron?) I like to buy the annual park pass/sticker at the beginning of the month so I don’t waste a month. I know I’ll end up getting one next month. Or the month after that, sometime this summer.

The road took us down to the Minnesota River valley. I was tempted to take some pictures, but I couldn’t find a place to pull over safely. Back up the hill we went. A semi truck almost killed the two of us when he went down the hill too fast. I understand that they take a long time to stop, but almost losing control of the truck is a different story. Right? I’ll ask Jameson. He should know!

The first stop we made was in a small town that isn’t labeled on the maps. It’s at the intersection of US 14 and US 71. This stop was for a gas fill up and potty break. When I went in the small gas station, there were a few locals who were sitting at the small tables inside eating lunch! I guess they carried the stereotype I have of farmers; they eat lunch early and know everybody in the town. Oh, the town even had a Dairy Queen! Leave it to a Minnesotan company to put Dairy Queens in every small town in Minnesota. I went kitty corner to the gas station to take a picture of a sign. One of the signs was this one that I am 100% certain wasn’t supposed to be put there. I have never seen a speed limit sign of 60 on a two-lane road. The MnDOT website even confirms this is wrong.

The second stop on the tour was in Walnut Grove. The city must have bought their water tower when it was on sale. It looked like a toothpick with a mushroom on the top, only big enough for Paul Bunyan. Then, I kept driving west. Supposedly there is a big geological feature between Walnut Grove and Tracy, but I couldn’t find it. How hard can it be to miss a “large eastward facing cliff.” We probably went through it and missed it because of all the trees. Afterwards, I drove south toward Slayton. I was looking for a memorial dedicated to twelve people who died in a two-car collision. I asked a local about it, they had no idea what I was talking about.

Then, I drove to Worthington. I was there only, what, three months ago? Oh, well. I took some pictures there. Three of them consisted of something I sent to notfoolinganybody.com and a “JCT 90” sign. Continuing south, I made it to the highest point in Iowa, Hawkeye Point. I seriously considered showing you the pictures, but this high point is so sad, I could find a better picture and fake it for you. Jameson and I should have gone there! He would have laughed at the sight and would still be laughing today. There are jokes going between my dad and I about the high point that probably don’t make a lot of sense.

Ok, fine. Here is one, two, three pictures of the high point.

Waste of your time? It was a waste of mine!

After Hawkeye Point, I went down random Iowa roads in search of abandoned buildings and ghost towns. I found one! I will be posting that picture in my photoblog sometime later this week. The last stop of the day was in Swea City, Iowa. My dad took a picture of the house he grew up in. It will be posted in my photoblog for the Photo Friday assignment. Other photos from the journey will be posted in the photoblog as well.

After reading this entry, you should know the following “key” things about me:
1. I like to drive. I like to waste gas. I like to go somewhere just to say I’ve been there.
2. I like signs. Our lives are ruled by signs every day and most of the time don’t realize it.
3. I like taking pictures of anything and everything, including pictures of bad storefront conversions.
4. I like ghost towns. I like things that “don’t exist anymore.” I like things that are just plain weird.