Oh, it’s going to be one of THOSE days…


I live in a small, rented house that has one of –those- neighbors—you know, the ones who stick their noses it everyone else’s business in lieu of doing what is best for the neighborhood, but still manages to be the biggest jerk regardless of their professed good intentions. Yah. One of those.

Every single day I watch him lead his dog into my yard and tell it to do its business there (despite the fact that he has his own yard right next door). I used to go running out to the front yard to make it clear that I saw his misbehavior every time he did it, but he’d end up yelling at his poor dog, blaming the poor thing for “wandering” instead of his own actions. I don’t bother anymore.

He also has the nasty habit of waiting for bad weather—be it a rainstorm or snow (times when it’s nearly impossible to mow my yard)—to call the city on me for not having my weeds under 6 inches tall when they literally just grew out the night before. He’s done this about four times now. So, this morning, noticing that my weeds were indeed high, I ran out to pull them up out of my yard (at least where he can see them) right under his nose—despite the fact that I have workmen coming to do it for me early next week, and despite the fact that I am severely allergic to them and may very well have an anaphylactic reaction.

So here I am, carrying an armload of tall weeds to my trashcan, trying not to breathe in the pollen at 7 a.m., when I step into my backyard and spot a steaming puddle of water right off the corner of my house. I stare at it for a moment—after all, it’d rained the night before, of course there would be puddles—but this was the only puddle. I looked up to see if the roof was dripping. Nope. Was the foundation wet, signaling a leak in the nearby bathroom—as had happened earlier in the year? Nope. There was, however, a puffy ball of muddy bubbles (mid-picture above), and a definite sign of the water having a flow to it. I hunched down, taking off my weed-stained gloves, and touched the puddle…. well aware that I could very well be putting my hand into some random animal’s steaming hot urine at this point. The water was indeed hot. I turned my head towards the nearby shed. My water heater was bubbling away—I could hear it. Crap.

As you may have guessed at this point, I have a leak in my yard. Somewhere between my water heater (which sits in an outdoor shed/laundry room) and the half-bath that sits at the corner of my house, an underground pipe has begun to bubble up it’s discontent. So now, rather than catching up on my reading or working on Khet for the day, I’ve got to sit around with my water turned off, waiting for my landlord to send workmen to come dig up my yard and fix it. I had plans to do laundry this morning, cook this afternoon, and at some point, use the toilet today. Le sigh. I have now abandoned those dreams. Instead, I will sit by the phone and wait for someone to show up, praying my yard doesn’t turn into a giant muddy sinkhole in the meantime.

I hope every single one of you readers is having a much better, more productive morning.