The Saturn is generally working out fine. I'm coming to terms with being so much lower to the ground as a driver, and gradually figuring out what its limits are (it is an *awfully* light vehicle, and the slightest roughness in the road as I round a turn can turn into substantial lateral slide, not to mention the tipping tendencies of SUV-ish things).
The next month will bring me a tow hitch, so I can still bring all the gear I require to things like Rites of Spring. Possibly also a roof-mounted carrier of some sort, so I can have a bit more weather-proof cargo space, as my current trailer is entirely open to the elements.
2) Friday evening, I plan to be celebrating a friend's birthday with a pub-crawl from the MIT side of Central Square up Mass Ave toward Harvard. On the early side of Saturday, it'll be infinite laundry; the later side will be a trip toward Cape Cod to get together with a friend who could use a bit of social counsel. Sunday is empty at the moment -- but there are a few people who are likely to read this with whom I should be spending some time. If you think you're one of them, and have a window in your own schedule, well, let me know.
Next weekend, I'll be in the western end of the state for separate meetings on Saturday and Sunday, the latter being planning for Rites of Spring. Speaking of which, I hope to see even more of my loyal readers there this year. I'll not dig into it here now, but if you want to know why I think *you* should come, please ask me. :-)
The following weekend (now empty) will probably include a planning session for Open Beltane, which will be on the 28th (or the rain-date 29th). I've mentioned this to a few of you in other conversation, and I hope many of you will come. It's a fun few hours in the Fells, and moving from a Beltane Maypole to a trail hike is a fine thing (as is going from Maypole to dinner or backyard bar-b-que)....
3) what else, what else... it's been weeks since I wrote a post of substance, and though I've had lots of thoughts of things to write -- they've pretty well dissipated in the intervening days and hours...
"My" current laptop, the one my boss handed me to use after my own was stolen last January, is showing signs of trouble. What I had first thought was a whining fan seems that it may in fact be a dying disk. So, I'm now backing up all 85 GB of data with rather more care than I have in some time, and fretting as it's going at less than 12-GB-per-hour which means it may not be done by the time I have to pack it up and head to the office tomorrow... And I'm trying to figure out whether I can justify purchasing a MacBookPro for myself, knowing that it will never let me run the several $500-1000 desktop publishing applications, acquired over several years, on which I rely for many side projects -- necessitating movement of those side projects to a desktop machine -- and thus limit those side projects to homework, not "wherever-I-am"-work.
Recent fits of the lonelies are proving difficult to shake. For something more than two years, now, I've had a couple friends-with-benefits situations, but nothing more than that, and those were more of the NSA variety than I generally hope for, and mostly more than a year back. Platonic social stuff is welcome and distracting from the lonelies, and I hope not to have less of that because I write this -- and I very much value the increased closeness of several friendships which have been growing over the past long while ... but I'm growing tired of life as a singleton. It seems worth saying, this is not meant as a message to anyone in particular, just as observation of my recent moodiness.
Recent news from my father has included his semi-retirement, as he has sold his practice and dropped his own office hours to 2 days a week. Most recently, he and my mother have taken steps to acquire a farmstead in upstate New York, about 4 hours from my current place, near where the elder of my younger brothers has been living the past few years. To go with this outpost in the boonies (at least partly a hedge against the rising global ocean tides, as the current parental estate is only about 1/4 mile inland and 25 feet above sea level, and reasonable forecasts have it becoming ocean-front if not waterlogged within the quarter-century if not the decade), they are also swapping my dad's swank conversion van for a new Honda Ridgeline pickup.
(This last is especially amusing, as my family has almost never bought new cars, knowing the economies of buying 1-2 years used, but me and my dad have now bought 2 brand new inside of 2 months.)
My parents say they don't plan to move in the immediate future, at least in part due to their desire to remain close to my remaining grandparent, my mother's 80+ year old father. The new place is being described as a nice summer home, a base from which my mother can play Nana to my current youngest nephew. I still anticipate a concerted effort to de-clutter and de-junk their current place over the next few years. This means I should get the last of my detritus out of there (which I should be doing anyway), and will probably also involve a visit from the twins of Antiques Roadshow fame, as there are many many many antiques of varying provenance and value, handed down the lines of both my parents' families.
My landlords have decided they want to raise my rent a bit -- really, a pittance, about 2% -- which they can do, since we fell to a tenant-at-will at expiration of the original lease. They don't seem to quite understand the rules of landlording, as they have yet to supply escrow information or interest for the last-month + security deposit they took at lease inception, and they're asking for this increase through email -- not through the legally mandated written notice. I'm not aiming to start battles with them, as they've generally been quite reasonable (and largely invisible, which is important to me), but at the same time, I know what the official legal rules of this game are, and I would rather we both played by those rules, not just me. I've not yet answered their email, and haven't decided how I will answer when I do....
I don't want to remain where I have been living for too much longer, much as I loathe moving. It's 15 minutes from most of my social scene, 30-60 minutes from work, and on virtually no-one's natural path, so random visitors are rare to the point of near extinction, and my own excursions are more investment than is best for me. So I'm contemplating the Davis region, again, still. Some of my readers may recognize this contemplation, and if you have a place I need to see, either as potential landlord, housemate, or referrer, please let me know. I could stick with the same level of rent and such, and stay solo in a more socially-enabled neighborhood, but I'd generally prefer to share a larger place with 1-2 others, spreading the utilities around, even if raw rent remains roughly the same.... This is still fairly idle plotting, but I would like it to fruit before the snows of next winter, which would require it leave the idle-zone pretty soon. And with my typical magnificent timing, this move would come right about the same time both my high school and college alumni directories come out, with *today's* residential info....
Gosh, that's a lot of hemi-demi-semi-negative stuff... but overall I'm not really unhappy, or depressed, or doing badly. These are just several pointy but relatively small irritations that I should be able to ease or eliminate, and that would be good in the overall scheme of things.
and with that, I think I'm done spewing for now.