Chris McKitterick (mckitterick) wrote,
Chris McKitterick

News Alert: Kansas is Humid.

Yeah, so it's been raining for many days (I mean raining, not that pissant drizzle Seattle gets), and it finally cleared up today. And hit something like 85 or 90 degrees. Think 100% humidity for much of the day, especially in the swampland that is my yard.

Okay, I'm in my garage wrestling with the V10 Ford engine & transmission I recently sold on eBay after having picked up a pallet and pallet-wrap. The garage is less-humid than outdoors due to the dehumidifier I recently bought and placed out there, but I only turn on the window-type air conditioner when I'm out there. So it's warm and pretty humid, and I'm wrestling a thousand pounds of iron, aluminum, wood, and an FSM-pile of hoses etc. onto a pallet. I get a little sweaty, no biggie. A few hours later, the delivery truck shows up and I open the garage door so we can get the palletized drivetrain into the truck.

Here's the scene: Picture a mud-and-gravel alley, low-hanging branches, a giant truck that can't actually get close to the cement of my driveway, max humidity and high heat. Picture a mountain of metal hanging from a chain on my 220-pound engine hoist with little metal wheels.

After a few minutes of trying to jockey the truck closer, the driver gives up. We roll the engine in the hoist down the driveway, and of course the leading wheels burrow into the mud. Push it back up a bit - mind you, there's only two of us and now we're pushing the weight of a VW Beetle uphill - and pause to think. I suggested we lay boards atop the gravel/mud, and go inside the garage to find 'em. I'm running with sweat now. Aha! Found two particle-board strips. Lay 'em on the alley. How to get the hoist onto them is the next issue. "With a long enough lever..." comes to mind. Viola! A big piece of 2x4 allows me to lift the engine hoist - with engine and tranny aboard! - into the air high enough so the driver can slip the boards under the wheels. Now we roll it into the alley (I almost typed, "with ease" - hah!), and the driver backs the truck up so the lift gate slips beneath the pallet.

Sounds simple, eh? Well, that was an hour's work at least. Then I unfastened the leveling device from the engine, re-attached the bolts and the intake bits, and helped him get the whole thing into the truck. Nice guy, and we talked about our respective 1951 cars (his is a Pontiac) during the project.

After he leaves, I plop into a chair inside where it's air-conditioned and drink three glasses of water, take ibuprofen (strained something in my back; feels better now), and have a lunch of cookie dough! (It's what's for lunch! Lunch of champions! Etc.) Just when I start to cool off, the UPS man shows up with 150 pounds of 2-car carport! Woooo! Well, I wanted to get started setting that up ASAP, so I helped him haul the boxes into the house and then returned to the driveway to start chopping down low-hanging branches. Three hours later and hundreds of pounds of dead (and some living but low-hanging) branches-in-the-driveway later, I realize I need to clean up those branches and cut 'em into 5-foot lengths for bio-recycling. I put away the ladder - oh, yeah, that was fun: Ever had to climb a wet tree to cut branches? Exciting - and begin to saw and snip the branches and heap 'em in the alley. Wow, giant mound. I'll have to tie 'em up into small enough bundles if I don't want them to remain permanent driveway decor.

Then, because I was so hot that I was seeing auras, I headed up to office to cool off.
Now I'm cool and heading home, perhaps to watch a movie. Wanna see a movie? I'm thinking Motorcycle Diaries. If you read this in the next hour or so, gimme a call!


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