Fun walking the dog

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Friday was Jonathan’s work from home day, but our internet connection, when it worked at all, was as slow as molasses in January. I believe I reposted Jonathan’s blog about that.

At least we had a better response from our internet provider from that than we did back in July, when they kept trying to convince us that it was our modem at fault, rather than their tower. (Though, to be fair, then we had an excellent signal, it just wasn’t connecting to anything.)

So, we had planned to go out to Panera that morning, so Jonathan could get more of his work done. But first, I took the dog for his good long walk, and Jonathan was planning on going down to the church to practice the organ, and then we’d go out afterwards.

So, I was surprised to see our car drive into the church parking lot as Rocky and I were walking by it. I had thought that Jonathan’d walk down, and back, to practice the organ. He waved, and started walking toward me, and I headed toward him.

Rocky was quite confused, as usually we walk around the edge of the parking lot, by the grass, rather than cutting across the asphalt, and he resisted that change a little.

It took him a few moments to realize that someone was coming toward us, and it was funny watching him gradually realizing that the person was my husband, and getting all happily excited. I know that the dog doesn’t see as well as we do (and rather assumes that we only see as well as he does), but I would have thought he’d recognize the scent sooner, especially since the wind was blowing toward us, from behind Jonathan. Still, though, it’s always fun seeing the dog do his happy/fun dance.

Turns out that shortly before (while Jonathan was getting ready to head down to the church, one of the construction guys had knocked on our door, and told him they’d be working on our driveway, and if we didn’t take the car out in the next 15 minutes, we’d be stuck there until after 3. (I think he was exaggerating, but that’s beside the point.) So, Jonathan took the car out.

Rocky was also excited when we walked by the car, which I think he recognized sooner than he had my husband, and jumped up on it, and looked in the window.

He wasn’t too happy when I tried to get him to go home after that. I think the problem was more that we were leaving the car behind us there rather than that we were leaving Jonathan. After all, if the car was there, it must mean we were going somewhere fun, right?

He also wasn’t happy when we got to the house, and had to cross the driveway pretty close to the guy who was using a circular saw on it. He never likes the construction equipment anyway, it makes too much noise.

Then, when we were in the house, they started using a backhoe to break up the driveway a bit more, and he kept looking at me for reassurances for that. Though by the time I left, an hour later, he had gone to sleep, so he could at least get used to the noise.

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Water Main Replacement Update

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Since Rocky is currently on “restricted activity”, we aren’t taking as long of walks as we were before, so we’re seeing less of the digging and pipe placement as we were before the Christmas break.

However, everything I do see makes me think it won’t be long before they do switch over the pipes.

Several times I’ve driven by someplace where the old and new hydrants are near to each other, and have seen them connected to each other with a fire hose. I’ve also seen water pouring out of various hydrants as workers stood around and watched. Other times, I saw water pouring out of a small wooden box. Both make me think that they’ve been doing pressure tests or leak tests on the new pipes. The new hydrants no longer have the white plate under the side nozzle, which I assumed was meant for any fire fighters to know it wasn’t a working hydrant. Which makes me hope the hydrants are actually working now.

Also, they’ve been digging up spots on the streets where they’ve previously laid the pipe. I’m guessing that they’re doing the final connections, and getting rid of the PVC pipes that they were using as markers (the ones that were still there, and hadn’t been knocked down or otherwise gotten rid of).

Recently I figured out that the construction equipment and pipes I saw in a fenced vacant lot near us was related to the water main replacement. I should have figured it out earlier, of course, but I hardly looked at it when we drove or walked by. It wasn’t until I realized that the six-foot orange pipes I saw lying horizontally had black caps at one end that I knew I was looking at fire hydrants, and then made sense of the rest of it.

If they are going through and connecting the houses to the pipes, then they probably will reach our street today or tomorrow.

I’ll let you know.

Ramblin’ Thoughts

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It’s much warmer today than it has been these past few days. Why, the temperature might even make it above freezing!

That, and the fact that the sun is shining means that the little bit of snow that was sticking to the roadways will do a great deal of melting today, which always helps.

It’s good to see a clear blue sky again, after several days of grey clouds. It probably won’t last long, it being Missouri and all. It might snow again this weekend.

I’ve always liked looking at a clear blue sky through tree branches, whether they are covered with leaves or bare. It’s always been a soothing sight, especially when the sky is really blue (which usually means looking straight up at it, rather than along the horizon). I haven’t done that much looking up lately.

When I’m out walking the dog, I’m usually looking down and out, keeping an eye on him, the footing (especially if there is snow, ice, or puddles on the ground), and traffic.

Lately, of course, I’ve also been watching the water construction workers, on whatever stretch of the long walk they’re working that day. Even in the cold, blowy, days that we’ve had, they’ve kept working. Got to admit, that’s a hard job to do, even in warm weather. It’s got to be a real pain in cold, wet weather. And, I’m sure, when they finally finish in our area, and finally get the water switched over to the new pipes, they’ll just have to move on to the next area, and start over again, new.

The dog and I usually walk two, maybe two and a half miles every morning, depending. It takes us about an hour, if I rush the dog. He tends to have two paces, run as fast as he can, or stop and smell everything. I want him to go somewhat in between. I don’t think he understands that. What’s the point going for a walk if you’re neither going to run nor smell everything out there?

So, we get back from our walk, and I’m tired, but he’s energized. I’ve figured out that I’ve got to chase him around a bit (which mostly involves me standing in one spot saying “Grrrr”, while he runs around crazily) for him to work off that energy, and be able to settle. Once we’ve done that, though, he’ll sleep for hours. It must be nice being a dog.

Cold Weather

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It’s gotten cold and snowy here the last few days. Not as bad as some other places, we probably got half an inch, at most, unlike the foot or more that I’ve seen people posting on their Facebook pages. Also, not ice, and not negative degrees, like I’ve seen other people posting about.

Still, trying to take the dog out for his long walks when the temperatures is in the teens isn’t much fun. It’s better when the wind isn’t blowing, but still.

Now, he’s a cold-weather dog. He just loves the snow (as long as it doesn’t pack between his toes when he’s walking, that’s no fun at all), and his furry coat means he doesn’t care much about the cold. He tends to suffer in the summer when it’s hot, though.

While we were out walking the other day, we went by one house where instead of the snow, one tree, two bushes, and a whole bunch of grass, were covered in ice. I had to look twice to make sure, then I saw where there was a steady stream of water coming up from the road. Suddenly, it was clear to me. Sometime during the night, a water pipe had burst, and geysered for a while, before making the break in the water pipe big enough to let the water stream out without spraying.

The water leak was already marked with orange cones before I got there, as well as being not too far from where they’ve been working laying the new water pipes (but far enough away that I was pretty sure they didn’t cause it), so I didn’t bother reporting it. And it was fixed a couple of days later.

With the snow on the ground (little as it is), the white PVC pipe that the water-construction people have left sticking up from the ground at various points are a lot harder to see. And I expect that once we get snows that really require plowing will run into and break most of those. I don’t know what those pipes are supposed to be marking, but I’m assuming that they’ve been marked on a map somewhere, and there will be enough left in the ground to figure out where they were when they need to take care of it.