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Alcohol

I Feel Like I Just Won the Lottery

Yup, nothing like a financial windfall to snap me out of my blogging dry spell. You might remember how excited I was when the price of gas here in Anguilla nearly dropped below $5/gallon. I just check that was almost exactly ONE YEAR AGO ( http://whaddyadoallday.com/?p=697 )

Well, then the price just stuck there. No movement here even in January when we were tortured by headline stories about gas prices in Michigan dropping to 47 CENTS/gallon. 47 CENTS! Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not moving to Michigan just to get cheap gas but that was a painful comparison to our ridiculous prices especially when you consider that lower gas prices SHOULD lower the price of EVERYTHING that requires shipping and even more especially when you are using gas to ship your gas across the ocean.

But, no. Our prices here languished to the point that we even quit aggravating our gas station cashiers with our constant admonitions about the lack of movement on prices and our questions of when something was going to change. They would nod and look annoyed or maybe say something about the company ‘virtually’ stockpiling gas at a set price to guard against fluctuations. Blah, blah, blah. It all fell on deaf ears.

So, imagine my surprise last week when I went to buy gas and saw this at the pump:

gas pump 16

Hallelujah. Be still my heart. Under $5! It’s a miracle. So much so, in fact, that the other woman pumping gas beside me didn’t seem at all surprised that I would take a picture of the gas pump. Who knows where we will go from here.

Sadly, probably back up again but I am trying not to think about that because maybe, without my noticing, other things have gotten cheaper too. After all, I checked my electric bill this week, too. We were paying $0.43/kwh and we are now paying only $0.22/kwh. I don’t want to know what they pay in Michigan, but a 50% drop in the price of electricity is better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

So what will I do with all this extra disposable income? I guess I could be responsible and ‘stockpile’ it for when the prices fly back up again. Or I could go to Sand Bar restaurant and drink their awesome frozen rum punches. Decisions. Decisions. Decisions.

rum punch

Poor baby

morbier

 

Apparently the stress of island living even drives your average, pampered feline to drink and to pull her hair out.

Our poor little Morbier. Even her pretty, green eyes look sad.

 

 

(photo courtesy of Melody Dill, Bird of Paradise)

It’s Five o-clock Somewhere

We decided to have a spiral staircase installed so we can get up to the roof of the house more easily. (Long story. Why is not important though I guess cocktails on the roof at sunset might tie in with the title of this post.)

Ten weeks ago Michael commissioned the work and paid the guy half of the proposed cost.  Numerous unanswered phones calls and unproductive drive-bys later, Michael found him hanging out at the Chinese restaurant and then he became easier to locate. (I also learned some time ago that my pay-as-I-go cell phone isn’t identified by caller ID so that when someone is avoiding me, I use the cell to all them in order to trick them into answering. Ha! Momma didn’t raise no fool!)

Anyway, the staircase was going to be ready Tuesday then Thursday or Saturday or maybe Wednesday. You know this routine. Eventually he delivered it and laid it down in the driveway. Then it rained a little, the color of the sky was wrong. Whatever. We couldn’t get him to come back. Finally, Sunday morning he was due to arrive at 8AM (confirmed by both a phone call and a drive-by). At 8:30A, Michael called. He was on his way. At 9:30A Michael called again. He was on his way. Finally at 10A he showed up with a crew of guys to erect the thing.

What is the first thing they ask for? Beer. I told Michael, “No way!  When they are finished, maybe. But I am not going to get a bunch of guys drunk on a Sunday morning and then have them heft an iron staircase up next to my plate glass windows. Not gonna happen!” So my little moral victory was that I made Michael wait to give the guys their free beers until after the stairs were vertical, but rest assured that they got them.

They always do. Oh, they will bitch about the brand (what? You only got Heiniken? You ain’t got no Red Stripe), but they get them. And if they don’t drink alcohol, you better have calorie-laden, non-diet soda or iced tea or something handy in the pantry. Heck, my gardener calls in for his glass of ice water nearly every day when he comes by.

Now I will grant you that it is polite to keep the workers from falling prostrate from heat stroke or dehydration. But what about all of the other ‘stuff’ they always need? It’s bad enough that I’ve had workers ask me for buckets and ladders and drills. (what? You ain’t got a hammer drill? You only got this one?) But I’ve had Corian countertop installers ask ME if I have a 1-1/2 inch hole cutter. I’ve had tilers ask ME if I have a tile float. The electrician came just the other day to install our new pool pump and asked if WE had wire? I’m sorry, but shouldn’t the specialized workman have the specialized tools of his own trade? Wouldn’t that be just a little like you bringing your dog to me to be spayed, my saying sure, giving you a price and then asking YOU if you have a scalpel blade?

It does grow a little bit old and I do get a little bit snarky. Like last week. The phones were out. I had to call customer service on my other-provider’s cell phone. I pointed this out to the customer service rep at the outset explaining that I wanted to expedite the complaint process. I ran right through: name, rank, serial number. Just give me the fault report number and let me off the line. She kept putting me on hold and coming back and ultimately she asked me if I had another phone in the house. I said, “I have three phones. None of them work. Unplugging any of them doesn’t help (there was a short in one of the connections once so I wanted to nip that line of questioning in the bud).” No, that’s not what she meant. She wanted to know if I had another phone besides the three that were currently plugged in so that I could plug in a ‘fresh’ phone and see if it worked. I was shocked. “I’m sorry. Are you asking me if I own a fourth, backup phone? No, I do not. Please just put in the complaint.”

Seriously? A fourth phone? An extra one? Just sitting around waiting for the possibility of this situation? Are you kidding me? But you know what? Here’s a little secret….. I do have another phone. Just like I do have a 1-1/2” hole cutter and a tile float, and some electrical wire and sadly enough nearly every other obscure item workers have ever asked me for.  We just don’t necessarily have to tell them that. It’s bad enough I have to keep them in beer.

Meanwhile, that’s an idea. A beer. After all, it’s five o’clock somewhere.