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Statistics:

Garbage Bags: 15
Garages Cleaned: One
Boxes of Almost Definitely Toxic Chemicals Packed: Four
Random Car Parts Discovered: Dozens
Cabins Wired For Electrical Service: ONE!
Pride Felt By Said Writer For His Middling Assistance: Limitless
Rain Barrels Full of Rabbit Pooped Shoveled: 2.5
Rabbit Hutches Disinterred: 15
Moldering Tropical Birds Discovered: One
Turkey Skeletons Unearthed: One
Bunny Suits Used (and Discarded): Six
Holes Dug: 1/2
Wells Fallen Down: One
Truck Name: One

Well, it was a busy month on the house, one that promised an exciting report until it was upstaged by this last week, which can only be reasonably called Utter Batshit Insanity. With that in mind, I offer you an update, primarily to fill your life with a thousand words on a topic that is both lighthearted and utterly trivial considering Current Events.

First, (and this is clearly the most important thing that happened this last week), our truck has a name! In a closely-fought contest, in which all nominees established substantial voting blocs, Rusty edged out Hey Big Truck (or HBT) by one vote. HOWEVER, as my wife told me, her vote should really count for three, since she’ll be living with the darn thing. (I’ll note that this was confirmed in my Facebook comments, which of course means that it’s true.) She then informed me that the truck’s new name was most definitely Hey Big Truck (or HBT or Hey-Bitty) and not Rusty, to which I said, “Yes dear.”

(In a much less competitive competition, HBT’s song is now the Sanford and Son’s theme song, which I invite you to hum whenever you see me rumbling by.)

I’ve now had a chance to drive the truck quite a bit, and am pleased to say that it generally starts on the first try, will get into gear with only minimal grumbling, and only makes one disturbing sound, which I’m rather sure is due to a tire having reached the end of its useful lifespan.

I will save all my newfound electrical, chainsawing (yes mother, I used a chainsaw again and I LIKED it), and excavatory experience for another post, and instead focus on the most exciting that happened to me this last week, which is that I fell down a well.

Let me begin with a handy pro tip, brought on by my own hard-earned idiocy. If you have a dug well, do not drive a pickup truck over the top of it while going down a hill questing for the walkout door to your basement. Secondly, if you do drive over said well-cap, please do not say “That’s looks a little tippy” while placing your foot with insufficient tentativeness upon it, thereby causing the well cap to tip over and you to fall halfway down it, saved only by your spider-like reflexes (I don’t naturally have Spider-Like reflexes, having embodied the motto, “Clumsy, but Durable!” for most of my lifetime, but apparently the threat of broken legs will do wonderful things to your hand-eye coordination), which will enable you to catch the top of the well before you discover first hand that A) Yes, there is water at the bottom of the well and B) It’s a damn long way before you’d reach it.

On the positive side, after I pulled myself up and spent a couple minutes limping around while turning the air blue; I was no longer feeling significantly under-caffeinated, and, as I said to Shelby, my other Best Friend Ever who was helping me clean out my prodigally filthy basement, “I guess I now have the title of my next blog post!” (Yup, those were my literal words.)

Once you’ve done that, the rest of the work is just details. Along with the help of John, we began tackling the Ground Zero of the house and managed, over the course of a day to remove four boxes full of definitely toxic chemicals, fifteen (!) rabbit hutches of various shapes and sizes, fill what I think is two and half rain barrels full of straw and rabbit dropping, wrestle one (surprisingly nice) pool table and accouterments into HBT and up into the garage, and make it nearly half of the way across the basement before running out of time and exhausting our gag reflexes on one turkey skeleton and a moldering dead tropical bird that was, for some unknown reason, snugly ensconced in a small Styrofoam container.

It really is work best done with friends and Shelby, who has now worked with me on the house on a couple occasions, demonstrated both an incredible capacity for hard work and a mind for effortless organization that has kept her two far slower companions pointed in the right direction. I appreciated this many times when, several times, after hours of seemingly fruitless work, I really wanted to curl up in a corner and cry, (if I could have found a clean one, that is.)

There is now visible progress. The basement has been downgraded from Nightmare-From-Hell to merely Very Filthy, the garage’s detritus has now been organized into neat piles, awaiting disposal or sale; the cabin is wired for electricity, and the basement of the cabin is 75% clear of excess water.

This is good, because the May 1st Move-In Date for Future Tenant/Best Friend EVER John Flint has gone from a spring hypothetical to a whispering suggestion that I have a Hell of a Lot More to Do Than I Bargained For In A Lot Less Time Than I Thought, which has meant that I’ve been stealing every last conceivable second for weeks to try to keep us on track.

Well, at least I won’t lack for stimulating activity during Pandemic 2020! (And, if you’re feeling bored and think that picking up trash in the dark sounds like a delightful diversion, have I got a deal for you!)

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