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The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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BB Piano
It was another bad night. Amélie went to sleep at the usual time, but woke up twice during the night. I strongly suggested to Lu that we left her to cry, but she felt bad about it and couldn't. I felt bad also, but equally felt that we needed to do it for everyone's sake.

It was also a very warm night... too warm. I used to find it easier to cope but the weight probably hasn't helped with this. Lu had swapped the duvet with a fleecy blanket, which just felt awful and of course hot. I was too tired to think of changing it to a sheet, and didn't want to wake Lu up. I can't sleep easily without something on me, as odd as that sounds, so was alternating between the cover on and off, and half asleep for most of the night. Suffice to say I was tired today, although I got a fair bit done.

Lu was going out with a couple of friends in the morning, and we were lending some of our baby equipment to one of them who's about a month away from having her second child. When she arrived I fitted the car seat in her car, which was surprisingly easy with good old ISOFIX.

I used the time that Lu and Amélie were away to get some things done, including tidying the garage and gathering together all the glass and cardboard for recycling. I took this to the local recycling place (thanks again to steveeeee for spotting the very local cardboard recycling place, and saving me a trip to the not so local tip), and then drove on to B&Q to get a drain wire (the shower drain has blocked again, but I had already run some Mr. Muscle through it. The One Shot acid treatment seems to have been less effective than the Mr. Muscle, but it's hard to say what's going on without uncovering all the pipes, and that isn't going to happen (I hope!). I also bought some glue sticks for the always useful glue gun as they had run out, and a thing for smoothing out silicone sealant, should I ever have to do that again. From there I went to Sainsbury's and bought some bits 'n' bobs of food, including the vital nectarines! I also bought some more plates, as we didn't have enough from the cheapo type we bought before.

When I came out of Sainsbury's I just happened to notice my front tyres, particularly the front left, were looking somewhat bald in places. The front left was also showing some strange lighter coloured spots along the edge, almost as if it had worn through the main section of rubber and was about to break through to the wire. Both the front tyres have worn unevenly (at least prior to getting the wheel alignment checked), with lots of wear on the outside edge. I was sufficiently concerned to drive straight to the tyre place in Fleet, and the guy there said that the front left was on the limit, and the front right close to it. So I didn't have much choice but to replace both. An unwanted expense, but better than getting stopped by the police, 6 points, and a fine. And also better than having a tyre fail on the motorway. I was going to get my car washed as well, but there was a huge queue, and it was getting close to the time when Lu had to leave for work.

It transpired that Amélie had fallen asleep after coming back from the friends visit, around midday. Lu left for work and I napped (ish) while Amélie also napped. She woke up just after 2pm, so I gave her a late lunch. Amélie often makes silly faces and eats slowly with me, and it took until after 3pm for her to finish her lunch. This wouldn't have mattered much except (a) I needed to get her to nursery and (b) I was expecting to go walking with steveeeee. I was on the way to nursery when I got a message from steveeeee saying he was delayed with work, and he couldn't go for a walk. So I left Amélie at nursery and went and got my car washed. It was good timing as there was no queue.

When I got home I decided to refit the part of the bolt on the back garden gate, as the gate seems to have dropped slightly in the frame, and it doesn't line up. It was a bit of a job, as the screws had rusted and were "glued" in the frame. I drilled new holes and refitted them with less hassle. I have been debating swapping the hinges around, because the gate opens to the right, yet the more logical location is to open to the left (against a wall, and to make it easier to get things like bicycles through the gate). I'm wondering if the builders left it this way on purpose, but I can't spot a reason why. It will be a lot of hassle though, and require removing and then reseating around 40 screws. I'm not sure I can be that bothered about it, but it's bugging me. I also ran the drain wire through the shower drain, but didn't encounter any obvious blockage. The wire itself must be about 2m long. What the heck is wrong with the drain? I can't afford a plumber at the moment, but I'll see if it blocks again. I'm hoping the drains haven't been built incorrectly.

It was around 4:30pm at that time, and as the weather was still nice I decided to sit out in the sun. I felt genuinely relaxed, and both the combination of relaxation, being alone, and sitting in the sun, was probably a first for this year, and perhaps several years. By some geometric fluke, and despite being surrounded by houses, nobody other than our direct neighbours can see into this particular spot in our garden. So I felt nice and isolated. I sat there until around 5:50pm, and then made a start on tidying up the dining room and kitchen.

Lu and Amélie arrived at the usual time of 6pm. I made burritos, and then took Amélie up for a bath. She'd put a pebble in her mouth from the garden, and absolutely refused to spit it out, so I had to hook it out of her mouth, much to her disgust. I'm all for letting her explore, but equally she could easily choke on something like this. Yet she insists on putting them in her mouth again and again. When the bath was done we lit a candle on Amélie's 18 month old cake. Just a bit of fun to celebrate another age milestone. Lu had bought a blank cake, and done a lovely job of decorating it. Following that I heard the chimes of the ice-cream van, after not hearing it for the last two (very warm!) days. I ran out and managed to get a 99. It had to be done.

Then it was the usual Wednesday games night. Attendance has been spotty the last 2 weeks, and I didn't play last week partly through frustration over that. It seems surprisingly hard for people to be able to schedule a couple of hours out, but then perhaps my life is more straightforward than some. More frustrating are those that say they will turn up, then don't, making it difficult to plan for numbers. Although there's rarely much of a plan as to what we're playing anyway.

And now it's time for bed. For some reason I keep thinking it's Thursday today. As it isn't Thursday that leaves me with two relatively boring days, so it will be job hunting and the usual until Saturday. Perhaps I'll even get the bike out, although I need to see if my cycle shorts still fit. Logic suggests they won't.

And a handful of photos from Amélie's 18-month-a-versary...


^The cake with Lu's additions.

Amélie, Lu & Cake

^Amélie looking sort of excited.

Amélie, Lu & Cake

^Amélie looking not excited at all, but Lu looks happy. Note the blue/grey eyes.