Monday Bag o’ Randomness

bag of randomFollowing on from Friday’s barbecue grill post: I went to Lowe’s to see if they had replacement side burner parts for my Weber gas grill, but really to look at that combo gas & charcoal grill I’d fallen in lust with. Would you be shocked to learn the combo grill is a flimsy piece of crap, made with third-rate components, something that will morph into a rusted-out piece of patio junk inside of two years? I was, but only briefly. What did I expect for $299?

You’re not going to get a good durable gas grill for much less than the cost of a new Weber Genesis, which is to say about $800, $900 with a side burner. Save for the side burner, we have a perfectly good one. I got on the phone with Weber and ordered a replacement side burner, so all is well. Or will be, as soon as it arrives and I bolt it on.

I’d rather save up for a new motorcycle, anyway. Not that there’s anything wrong with my current ride. Even though it’s a 2001 model, it runs like new and has only 85,000 miles on the clock, barely broken in by Goldwing standards. With new tires and brake pads, all fluids freshly changed, it’s ready for next week’s run to Colorado. I took it up the twisty road to the top of Mount Lemmon yesterday to finish scuffing in the new tires. Here we are, with the mountain village of Summerhaven in the background.

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Mt Lemmon selfie, 9/7/14

In two years or three, though, I’d like to buy a new ride, assuming Honda introduces a new Goldwing. They’re still making the same model I ride, albeit with slightly different trim. Goldwing riders were hoping for a new model in 2015, but alas it is not to be. Maybe 2016? Honda, if you’re listening, we want a six-speed gearbox and an electrically adjustable windscreen. Screw everything else, just give us those two things.

Thanks to Tropical Storm Nestor, moving up from Baja California and the Sea of Cortez, we have rain this morning. The water on some streets in Tucson is up to hood level, friends tell me, but not on the east side where we live. I shouldn’t speak too soon … although I made a quick bagel-replenishment run to Safeway earlier this morning I didn’t cross any of the washes that run through our neighborhood, and for all I know they’re flooded. Some subdivisions in this area are completely cut off from the rest of Tucson when the washes flood, but not ours.

The rain has let up momentarily, and the bird feeders outside my office window are mobbed again. During the rain, the birds hunker down in the branches of trees, the prime spots being branches just below higher branches. I tried to take a photo of a little goldfinch sheltering from the downpour, but she saw me raise the blinds and flew away in spite of the rain. I was able to get this photo a moment ago:

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Windowscape with birds & dog

You can see smaller birds, mostly lesser goldfinches but also a few house sparrows, on the cylindrical feeder to the left, and if you look at the full sized image on Flickr you can see larger birds inside the round feeder hanging from the tree. The dog, of course, is Schatzi, my desk companion, who came in all wet from a potty run during the height of the downpour and asked if she could dry off under the desk lamp. How could I refuse? If it’d been me, I’d have said fuck it and pissed on the floor. Schatzi is a good citizen.

C’mon, Nestor … we need more rain!

Update (bedtime, same day): My friends tell me it’s Tropical Storm Norbert, not Nestor. Sorry, Norbert!

© 2014, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.

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