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20 July: Monday

La Quinta, California: We had a very productive day, but many mix-ups, and a bit of time wasting. Because the four drop-down shade screens in our casita are over 8 years old, have a few scratches, and have become un-done/un-zipped from the side seams in a few spots, (and our lot is for sale), we had them replaced. The screens were replaced today - at 6a! It's hot here. Workers want to start early.

Since I was up, I headed over to the new house (in our car) to finish unpacking the last kitchen boxes. Dave remained at the RV while the crew replaced the casita screens. At the house, I was waiting for a representative from our pool maintenance company (we simply hired the company the last owner used) to walk me through the pool equipment situation, and the wall-mounted pool command center. Might not be a surprise to any Reader, but this is the first pool we have owned. There are filter cycles. Our pool has two fountains. One spa. Lots of buttons. I'M ON IT!

The plan was for me to return to the RV after meeting with the pool rep, make sandwiches, then return to the new house with DT (and sandwiches) to continue unpacking, until a rep from a door company came by to discuss weatherstripping.

I kept working, but the pool guy did not show. After a while, I called Dave to say I was afraid to leave the house, in case I missed the pool rep. DT answered his phone, about a mile away from the new house. The screen guys had finished early. Instead of exercising, Dave just decided to walk to our new house!

Of course, this meant no sandwiches. No lunch. No food. We kept working/unpacking and organizing, but by one o'clock, we were both just famished (no breakfast!). One of us could have popped back to the RV to make lunch (why don't we just bring sandwich stuff to the new house already?), but I had this crazy idea to order take-out from a nearby restaurant.

What? I know. Everyone is doing it all the time, but we just haven't. Yet.

We did it! After cooking/preparing everything we have eaten for 127 days, we had take-out lunch! I ordered on-line, and DT drove to 50th + Jefferson to fetch our lunch from Heirloom Craft Kitchen - one of our favorite restaurants in La Quinta.

And wouldn't you just know that before I could put that just-photographed fried chicken sandwich into my mouth (truffle tots!), the pool guy showed up! Dang!

I waved to the rep at the door, giving him a "we need to get our face masks" sign, and figured-out how to set the oven to 200 degrees. We popped our plates into the oven (DT had a beef burger), and then met the rep outside, so he could explain our pool equipment and how to set the timers, etc. 

We are schooled in pool.

Our lunch was so good. What is not to like about truffle tots? Truffle tots! Truffle tots! Truffle tots!

Throughout this move and unpacking, I keep coming across things that make me smile: a cutting board made by Leo, age 3. Make my cry: my mom's cookie jar. Made me laugh: too many memories. Make me miss good friends: Shirley and Martin. Our friends from England/neighbors in Taiwan, have given us so many pretty things over the (many many) years. Today, I unpacked a salad bowl Shirley found in Italy several years ago that she decided needed to be in my kitchen. I may not have the story 100% correct, but as I recall: Shirley bought the porcelain salad bowl (and stainless steel servers) in Italy, and carried it back to England in her luggage. Then, Shirley convinced her eldest daughter, Emma, to carry the salad bowl - in her luggage (it is HUGE) - to Oregon (Emma lives in Portland). Then Emma gave the bowl to me. We love the bowl, and use it all the time... then we packed it up and put it in storage for nearly a year... until it was delivered to us last week.

Isn't it just stunning? Well traveled bowl!

I sent this photo to Shirley while she was still awake (8-hour-time-difference to London), and she was so happy to see the bowl had made it from Italy to England to Oregon to California!

Then I showed a photo of a souvenir Shirley had sent me from
their trip to South Africa - maybe 20 years ago? Maybe more?
And a photo of the salt cellar I bought when we were
with Shirley and Martin on Capri. Years ago.

(Not photographed are the Aynsley cake server and salt/pepper shakers, a desk clock... nor many other things Shirley and Martin have gifted us over our 35 year friendship.

So here is where this boring unpacking blog takes a bit of a twist. Lunch over. Pool rep gone. We kept unpacking and were waiting for a door guy to stop by to give us a quote about weather-stripping, repairing, re-hanging, etc., the many doors in our new house... when out of the corner of my (good) eye, I see a 60-ish barefoot dude in a tee shirt and shorts on the back (swimming pool) patio of our house. He was cupping his face up against the glass to get a better view of the interior of our living area!

Imagine his surprise when he saw me walk into the living room! Imagine my surprise when I realized he was not the door guy we were expecting (no mask/no polo-shirt-with-a-logo/no shoes)! A Peeping Tom?

Dave put on a face mask and opened the patio door. It was our first encounter with a neighbor! This man (lives a few doors down) was only snooping because he had heard the past owners were moving and had some furniture for sale. (Oops... that was at least a month ago.) Poor guy was so funny and so embarrassed. He said he really liked our bed (meaning he had looked in several windows), and asked if we golfed...and then shuffled off! The first neighbor we have met! (Don't be shocked. Over 2/3rd of the owners are away at this time of year.) Maybe this new neighbor will one day become our friend?

The door guy showed up - on time - and DT hired him to fix all of the exterior doors. I'll say it again: this house needs some love. It needs to be lived-in. It is too much house for a 4-months-a-year vacation home. This house needs Dave and Terry to bring it back to life.

No matter our take-away lunch, by the time we arrived back to the bus at 6p this evening, we were ready for more food. Sadly for me, dinner tonight was more chicken. (Okay, not really, just kidding. I just LOVE chicken.) Tonight I had planned an easy Japanese dinner of Chicken Katsu, rice, iceberg lettuce with miso dressing, and Sunomono Salad (good recipe at this link, but I never put soy sauce in this salad).

Chicken Katsu
Chicken Katsu

Until my next update, which will include a full unpacking update, I remain, your chicken-filled correspondent

One reply on “20 July: Monday”

  1. Ha! Something similar happened to us when we bought a house with a pool years ago. Hubby and I were waiting at the house for the moving truck to arrive, when I saw a man (30ish) hanging out around our pool. By the time, I ran and grabbed hubby, for protection (Ha ha), the guy was in the pool swimming laps! He turned out to be a neighbor that didn’t have a pool, but was using our pool while the house had been empty (2-3 months), and obviously didn’t know we were moving in that day. Of course, he was embarrassed and very apologetic. In the end, we ended up being good friends with him and his wife, shared tons of fun times and still keep in touch. So, you never know…

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