Life is just one damned thing after another… - Elbert Hubbard

Had to take our car back to the dealer ship Monday to have them make another go at fixing a problem I had just had it in a few weeks previously for. They appear to have actually fixed it this time. What’s more, they fixed it without charging me another $285 to do it. Seems the Grand Prix had burned out two ignition coils and four ignition wires causing the mechanic to comment that it must have been running pretty badly. Which, of course, it wasn’t and part of why it took so long for them to figure out what the problem was. The only symptoms were a slight hesitation when taking off from a complete stop and a minor power dropout every so many seconds while cruising at highway speeds. Subtle enough that it didn’t register on the tachometer, but enough to be felt by those riding in the car. First time in they claimed it was the fuel filter and they replaced it and because I hadn’t gotten it replaced earlier it had “gummed up” the fuel injection system so they had to clean that out too and that’s where the big bucks came from. This time I heard the magical words “covered by the warranty” and promptly stopped caring what the problem was. The car is only a little over 2 years old which is too soon for it to start having the problems I’m having with it. I’m debating trying to trade it in on something else.

So I’m feeling pretty good yesterday because that latest minor crisis has passed and the car appears to be running well. The day itself went smoothly enough and I’m sitting here last night working on the computer when I hear my daughter in the shower shut off the water and say “Uh oh”.

You never want to hear your kid say “Uh oh” immediately after shutting off the shower. It’s never a good sign.

So I ask “Uh oh what?” as I’m always highly articulate when gripped with a rising fear of pending disaster. Court comes in the room and spends the next three minutes providing an elaborate explanation for how she managed to accidentally knock a hole in the bathroom wall. Seems it occurred while she was bending over to retrieve some item that had fallen into the tub and she bumped the wall and felt something shift. So I got up and went into the bathroom and, sure enough, two of the tiles right about waist height in the middle of the wall are pushed in revealing an inky blackness behind them and looking not completely unlike a mini-gate into the depths of hell. Naturally, this has to occur over the couple of days we’re having unusually warm weather in Michigan, which made showering this morning pretty much out of the question despite waking up in a rather sweaty state of affairs. It’s amazing how clean you can get with a drinking glass and a running bathtub when you have no other choice.

I’ve been in this apartment for four years now and we had problems with water damage from winter ice build up shortly after I moved in. We’re constantly battling with silver fish in the apartment as well as they have moved in because they love the sort of environment created when a building has water damage to its walls. The bathroom was already showing signs of previous water damage prior to my moving in as they had to go through and redo the tiles on the floor shortly after I arrived. They’ve since had to redo them a second time and I noted as I stepped away from the gaping hole in the wall, that at least one tile on the floor has come away again as well. The wall and floor in the bathroom around the tub has been patched more than once in the past and it’s apparent that what really needs to be done is the walls and floor around there need to be ripped out and replaced as they have rotted pretty much away at this point. The apartment complex, of course, doesn’t want to do that as it’s too expensive. I don’t think they’ll bother until the bathtub proper decides to relocate itself to the apartment below us. Hopefully none of us will be in it should it decide to do that soon.

Ultimately, I want to buy a house someplace around here and I hope to do so within a year or so. The debate I’m having now is whether we bother to stay here for the remainder of this lease or see if we can’t find a house to rent or a better apartment without so much water damage nearby. We had a pretty good tax return this year and I have reason to expect another one at least as good next year which I am seriously considering using as a down payment on a home if we haven’t already managed to wiggle our way into one before then. Either way, I’m thinking I need to cut my time here at this complex down to as short a period as I can.

Anne and I are about to leave for a few days to celebrate our one year anniversary this weekend (more on that later) so, with a little luck, they can get a hastily done patch job in place before I come back and have to try and shower with a drinking glass again and I can move on to whatever the next crisis is going to be.

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