Archives for posts with tag: craigslist

New (to Us) Trailer

A.V. Walters

trailer

There are probably a hundred things that we could have done today—some maybe more important than what we actually tackled. But, there is a special lure to a new toy, though. You just gotta try it out.

We’ve had cut wood sitting in the forest for some weeks now. Not that it matters; the firewood could sit there until fall. The problem was that, though we’ve cut the trails, we did not have a trailer to haul the wood out. I’ve been perusing craigslist for weeks. Trailers are not cheap! Who knew?

It needed to be small, to handle our steep terrain and tight turns. It did not need to be road-worthy. By that I mean that we didn’t need lights or brakes. We will never use this trailer off the property. And, we’re not likely to gather firewood in the dark.

I mentioned sometime back that I’m a bit of a scrounge. Indeed, I may be the Queen of Scrounge. Finally, last week we found the perfect trailer. It’s really junky! For some reason, that makes me love it all the more. The old metal frame is rusty, but it’s sound. The wood is a mess, but that can be replaced. This is probably an old military trailer. I guess we’ll refurbish it—though I kind of like it just as it is. Rick is just as enthused, in a more subdued kind of way.

Today was our first free day where we didn’t have to be doing something else. Rick was itching to try out the trailer. So, we decided to bring in some of the cut wood. Our funny little trailer worked like a champ. We brought in five trailer loads (plus what we could fit in the tractor’s loader.) Naturally, it turned out to be the hottest day so far this year—well into the eighties. It’s not ideal weather for the heavy lifting in this task. Still, off we went. We’re as happy as clams, though a little tired.

Now that so much wood has been brought down to the home site, I guess we’ll have to split and stack it. There’s more up there, but we’ve run out of room at the splitting station. Everything in it’s time…and then, we can go play in the hills again.

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Second-Hand Blues…

A.V. Walters–

There it is, in all it's blue glory. (Rick calls it the Blubaru.)

There it is, in all it’s blue glory. (Rick calls it the Blubaru.)

If you have followed this blog, you may have gleaned that I’m a bit of a Craigslist maven. Indeed, I have been accused of being the Queen of Scrounge—and I’m not sure if it was meant to be a slur or a profound compliment. It follows from my environmental efforts, to live a little more lightly on the planet. We have become a disposable culture. Most Americans would prefer to have new rather than making what you already have, better. I enjoy the challenge of finding that which others discard and transforming it into a head-turning success. I can’t help it; I am a middle child. Generally, Rick shares my view, though occasionally he looks at one of my schemes and shakes his head. He is a magician in the world of rehab alchemy. He can make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, in part because he has a discriminating eye for sow’s ears.

My sister rolls her eyes and says, “Admit it, you’re just cheap!” I laugh. She is a Craigslister, too. She just thinks she’s more honest than I am. Somewhere, in all of this, you can triangulate to find the truth.

January has been a tough month. My car died. A friend died. My computer went on the fritz. And, so did the back-up laptop.

The car was a high-end, performance machine—a relic from my former life. It could have been saved, but it had reached that tipping point where the repairs were more than its Bluebook value. After 15 years, it was about to get expensive. Its low-slung elegance did not fit our country lifestyle, or country roads. It was time.

My sister was so excited that I’d be getting a new car. She knew that I’d get a Subaru, like hers, for the all-wheel drive, good mileage and high clearance. “Get an orange one, like mine.”

“Not so fast, sister. I won’t be buying new. I don’t get to pick the color when I’m scouting for a good, used deal.” The deal came quick. Within days I’d located the very low-mileage car I wanted, at a good price. The color—twilight blue.

Let me be perfectly clear—I loathe blue. The color only gave me a moment’s hesitation. A good deal on a good used car is enough to ask of the universe. Buying a blue car made me walk my talk. That sister hates blue, too. So does my mother. It must be in the genes. (My sister howled when I told her.) But, beggars can’t be choosers.

Learning I’d bought it, one friend emailed,

“OMG!!!!! … a BLUE car. (That’s a lovely blue.) Will the world change its axis? Sun spots. Will they explode? The Mississippi flow backwards? It’s a lovely car.”

Some folks can’t resist rubbing it in.

With a few trips to the local Mac store, (in my blue car) I was finally able to iron out the computer problems. (That’s a whole story by itself.) I’m back up to speed, on the net, and on the roads.

I’ve met some great people on craigslist. A $25.00 set of curtain rods sealed the deal on what became one of my closest friendships. But, you can’t replace a friend on craigslist. Some things don’t come cheap and they take time. January closes, more resolved and more unresolved, all at the same time. My condolences to all who have suffered January’s losses.

At this time of year, a car's color doesn't much matter. The coat? Blue. A hand-me-down from another sister. The jeans? A special on ebay. The high cost of blue.

At this time of year, a car’s color doesn’t much matter. The coat? Blue. A hand-me-down from another sister. The jeans? A special on ebay. The high cost of blue.

The Spam Review

A.V. Walters

Does anyone else read their spam? I fully trust WordPress to save me from the horrors of the spam kingdom, but recently I took a renewed interest in the junk file. Something about my post, “Revealing” caught the attention of the spam-spiders. I have no idea why a post on art restoration (oops, maybe that’ll do it again) would garner so much spam. The overwhelming majority of the spam came from one vendor. I’d mention it by name, but then I’d just be giving it the very name-recognition attention it was seeking in the first place. I’m a firm believer in not rewarding bad behavior. I’m dying of curiosity as to what sly and secret algorithm garnered that flurry of electronic litter. So now I read the spam. I’m looking for some connection between the blog I write and the junk it attracts.

Perhaps the art restoration (there I go again) blog contained words leading one to believe that I was a high-end shopper and would be interested (oh-oh, here we go) in high-end leather goods or handbags or coats or men’s accessories. In truth, I’m not much of a consumer. My first-choice venue for shopping is Craigslist. Indeed, I confess, I am a Craigslist addict. In particular, I love to peruse the construction materials section. I know, it’s weird. I find it reassuring that used/recycled or mis-ordered materials are available, in case I ever need to (literally) rebuild my life. I once remodeled a kitchen (cabinets, appliances, fixtures and flooring) almost entirely from craigslist. That’s when the addiction started. Some people watch television, when I’m stressed, I scan the listings for unwanted construction materials. My sister suggested a particular microwave and I nodded and said I’d wait to see if one got listed. I’d completely forgotten that most people shop in stores. I saved a bundle on that kitchen. Mostly though, I avoided stores. That poor spammer is really barking up the wrong tree.

In my last post, I mentioned that a particular phrase was “ringing in my ears.” It was just a phrase, not a subject of discussion. My spam box filled with remedies for tinnitus. Actually I do have tinnitus, so it took me a minute to trace back to what I’d said that would lead to that advertising pitch. For just a second, I wondered what they knew about me. I don’t mean to be internet paranoid, but in fact, they are listening. My last book included a lot of Catholic references, and I did a good bit of research online. Now, I’m plagued with pop-up ads for Christian Singles. (Oh no! now what will the spammers do with me?) It’s a funny bit of cat and mouse, this. But I have the ultimate power–I press delete.