This week's list of 25 aren't really about me personally. Or about me as a person. I mean, they're about me, but they aren't personal. Does that make sense? Oh well, here it goes!
151. I’m not much of a housekeeper. I wish I was good enough that Al wouldn’t notice when I’ve actually cleaned.
152. He’s always sounds so surprised. “You’ve cleaned!”
153. Al’s better at cleaning than I, and he almost always cleans up after dinner. He says that since I cook, he’ll clean up.
154. When people come over for dinner for the first time, they are always a little surprised at Al collecting the dishes and cleaning. The women ask how I trained him to do that, and the guys look at him like a traitor. Yeah, like I could “train” him to do something he didn’t want to do.
155. So, I the rest of the house may not be in great shape, but that kitchen is clean!
156. The house we’re in now is only the second house we’ve ever bought. The first house was over 10 years ago.
157. We usually rent since we move pretty much every 3 years.
158. At each new town Al says we should buy then rent it out because that’s how somebody he knows makes money. Um Hmm. And just who would have take care of all of that while he’s deployed or TDY(temporary duty)? Me!
159. I can counter each positive story with a horror story when it comes to renting out a house, especially if you don’t live in that town.
160. Therefore, we are wonderful tenants. We take care of the homes we’re living in.
161. I would rather live off-base. Yes, in essence, if we lived on base we wouldn’t pay rent or utilities (electricity, gas, and water), but actually we do pay because if you live on base, you don’t get a housing allowance. But the housing allowance isn’t enough to cover mortgage/rent or utilities any way, but then again, it’s not meant to.
162. When you live on base, you also pay by adhering to the strict housing rules. The two biggies being keeping the lawn mowed, edged and weeded and shoveling all snow from driveways and sidewalks (pain in the butt in upstate New York) immediately after snowfall, then shoveling snow again off the driveway and sidewalks after the trucks come by and clear the roads by putting all of it in front of your driveway and on your sidewalk.
163. Now you might say, “We all have to mow our lawns and shovel our driveway.” Yes, but do you get a nasty ticket on your house if your lawn is considered too long or you haven’t shoveled your driveway? Then do you have to take that ticket into your boss so that he can sign off on it, confirming that you have taken care of said offense?
164. We called the people who drove around for inspections (once a week) the “Yard Nazis.”
165. At our first assignment, we got a ticket for not turning our porch light off in the morning. Al took it in to his commanding officer, who said, “Did you turn it off?” Nod yes. “OK then.” And he threw it in a basket on his desk.
166. But this is serious! If you get 3 tickets, you’re kicked off base. And the military will only move you once, so the moving expenses will be your own. And it just doesn’t look good to your commanding officer to get kicked off base.
167. We ran into Yard Nazis again in the San Antonio neighborhood we lived in. They had the Homeowners’ Association from hell.
168. One man on the board would stand outside in his yard and threaten people who had dogs, yelling at them to not let their dogs “crap all over the place.” He said this to Al once, and Al said, “She just marked. I picked up the other part, do you want it for proof?” then held the bag up in the old fart’s face.
169. This is also the neighborhood where the guy across the street shot at a dog that had chased his wife and their little dog. Problem is, he didn’t pay attention where he aimed and a bullet hit our circuit breaker box. The door was strong enough to stop it, thank Goodness, but there was a dent.
170. He shot through our neighbor’s garage door, then it went through the door into the house, and then into the laundry room, where their daughter was leaned over getting clothes out of the dryer. If she had been standing, it would have hit her in the head.
171. The cops came and I think he got a ticket for discharging a weapon. But he paid dearly emotionally because he felt horrible. Not that he’s excused for his behaviour, though.
172. I’ll never forget that sound, and Al telling me to stay in the house. Those movies where people are shooting guns and bullets are flying every where? No where near as terrifying as it really sounds.
173. Besides the bullet in the house, San Antonio was a nice assignment. Great food. And we made some great friends.
174. It was San Antonio where Al learned to brew beer. It’s much easier than you’d think. We joined a brewing club called the Bexar Brewers (Bexar being the county SA is in).
175. We had “meetings” where we tasted each others’ beer. And if you didn’t have a beer that month, there was a style for the month and you could bring commercial beer. I was usually the designated driver. Well, someone has to do it.