December 7th, 2015

Previous town vs. Current Town

I call my previous town Mayberry (<-- not it's real name), because the town had a set of shared illusions about how Safe and Wonderful and That Doesn't Happen 'Round Here that I found pretty risible, given the drug death, accusation of rape that turned out to be a disagreement about payment about an inhome "massage" service, etc.

Here is what happens in my current town:

http://acton.wickedlocal.com/article/20151205/NEWS/151209636/1998/NEWS

"11:02 p.m.: Public safety personnel responded for a motor vehicle accident with unknown injuries on Great Road. NSTAR was advised for a split pole and wire down. DPW contacted for road closed signs. The ambulance was cleared."

I think I noticed this, because I am pretty sure that they were still working on that utility pole the following Saturday when I tried to take T. to Crossroads Cafe and had trouble getting there from here. Very New England.

But this is the one that triggered this whole post. The Wicked Local headline was "Know Your Neighbor" and when you click through, here's why:

"10:41 a.m.: Police responded to a report of two suspicious males walking around the neighborhood on Whittier Drive. Police spoke with both suspects, who lived on Whittier Drive."

I hope (but am not optimistic) that the two males were white, because this is appalling enough without it also being racist. There are _maybe_ 20 houses on Whittier. This is just ridiculous. Also, absolutely _everyone_ within a few mile radius winds up walking along Whittier as part of a loop.

Day of Cancel

Last Saturday, I realized I was double booked for this morning, so I moved my haircut to next Monday. This morning, breakfast with my friend A. got moved to its "rain date" ... next Monday. So I called the salon and moved the haircut back to today. I also got to drop off the picture with the damaged frame (it's of one of those swing rides, that we sort of inherited from extended family as they were downsizing) and arrange to have it reframed. They are even going to reuse the UV glass, so that's cool.

I also got a text this morning from the babysitter saying she was sick. I texted the other babysitter to see if she was available, but no go. I called my son's school to tell them what was up so he wouldn't be too surprised and to give him the option to cancel, which he declined. So I arranged to pick up my daughter from her school a little early so that I could bring my son and her to the pool for their lessons at the same time. And I canceled her transportation home. Then the second babysitter said she was available after all, so I called my daughter's school back, canceled the early pickup and then reinstated the transportation home (for a few minutes, it looked like that wasn't gonna work out, but it did).

Despite it all, I got to walk with my friend M. (1 mile) and I did the 3 mile loop on my own. I dropped one bag of stuff off at the Middle Class Guilt Reduction Station and put another bag into the trunk to drop off the next time I think of it.

A few days ago, we even arranged to turn a kids' table and chairs over to a friend, so decluttering is slowly continuing (we still have the table, but I'm feeling optimism that it will move to its new home in the next few weeks).

A bit more about cars

I noticed after I got my car back, post software update to fix CEL (so far so good -- it hasn't come on again yet, but only time will tell), that I no longer had a feature I Truly Love: speed limit information. I poked around on google and in the manual but couldn't find anything to try, so I called the service department today. This time, I asked for the guy that I've been talking to since I first ordered the car, and who is very friendly, but who normally does not interact with customers (they have an additional layer between the guys who do the work and the customers). The woman who answered the phone for the service department was hesitant when she asked, "The shop foreman?" I said, "Is that possible?" She said, I'll see. She came back and said he hadn't responded to a page and might not be in yet, so asked if I wanted to talk to one of the normal layer. I asked for the very nice man I've seen the last couple times (he introduced me to another orange i3 owner -- the i3 is orange, not the owner -- and that customer and I now trade greetings through him, because we are clearly The Same People) and left him voice mail.

The whole day went by, and as I was sitting in the parked car about to get me and A. out for her swim lesson, the phone rang and it was S., the shop guy. He walked me through the settings I needed to access -- a dead simple change and I feel slightly foolish for not figuring it out on my own, but he didn't make me feel foolish at all, just said it probably got reset by the software update -- after making sure I was in the car, not currently driving, and had a minute.

I really have to remember the importance of Names. I don't need to know the names when I'm interacting with the person, but if I can manage to remember someone's Name, I can get to them again via other random people who answer phones. I'm not sure why it has taken me this long to learn this lesson, but hey, better late than never, amirite?