Friday, August 8, 2008

Soulman and the bobcat- a true story

howdy folks--
yep, i'm late again. sorry.
i shoulda posted when i was up the first time.. around 5 or 6 or so-- but i did my smoke and choke-- and decided i was just damn tired still, so i went back to bed at like 8 ish, i think. just woke up a while ago. i think this med change i had recently-- or chang-es.. i should say-- have really screwed up my sleep pattern. they've helped my head-- finally-- well, somewhat :)). no , really- alot. but man, i just can't get it together sleep-wise. too much, too little, - naps - no naps- and every day is different. and it sucks. i just can't get used to it.

so anyways-- now that i got my complaining for the day out of my system.. i have decided to post a little story for y'all. with a little prompting -- ok .. a suggestion, as it was mentioned earlier today. and seein as i really have nothing else to say today-- i'll go ahead and tell y'all a story-- bout a dude named soulman. :))

Soulman and the bobcat

Once upon a time , in a land far far away, we’ll call it Hell. Ok, we’ll call it New Mexico. But in cases that this state is mentioned y’all know I prefer to use Hell. Because for me.. that’s what it is, and always has been .

Anyhow—a long long time ago, a family lived in a place called texas. Everyone had their ups and downs at the time, but overall, the little family of three were generally happy where were living.

Soulman had a decent job, soulkid was doing fairly well in school, and had many friends, and soul, the wife, was content with her life in the small town they lived in. she would write, and swim in their pool, and enjoyed running soulkid to friends and girl scouts and other places. She also enjoyed fishing with soulman quite often.

The downfalls at the time , were mainly that the income wasn’t quite matching up to the house payment and other bills, and the home they were buying was a money pit. Every time they turned around something else happened with that house. All the way from plumbing problems, to termite infestations- which caused an entire bathroom to be torn down, to fleas to repeated flooding in living room. They were fed up and exhausted from all the work and money they had to put into the house—and still see no improvement with it.

Still, soulkid was young, and happy, and settled.

But soon, with the many home repairs, exterminators for the termites, and other problems, the house payment began to fall behind. The soulfam was in a bit of a bind, and soulman began to feel responsible for any and every financial stumbling block, or bit of unhappiness that showed itself in the home. Which that in itself caused even more stress in the home.

It wasn’t long before soul, using the one computer that the entire family shared at the time , began to notice job searches on the computer. She didn’t mention anything for several weeks.. not until it began to show in soulmans’ behavior. The distraction, silence, and extended amount of time online.

Finally… as if she didn’t already put it all together in her mind…. She asked him…

“ Are you thinking about moving back to New Mexico ? “

which is where his mother and brother, nieces and nephews lived.

She knew he was homesick for them already, even before the house began to fall apart. But lately she just felt that he had been thinking and even planning on a move out there. Even though the one time he had moved his family there several years earlier, it was no less than one problem after another.

With a slight hesitation, he answered quietly,

“how did you know”?

“I just know. But why?”

soulman went into a long explanation of dreams and goals he had for bettering his family there, vs. watching everything and everyone fall apart here. He said he already had a job lined up that would pay well, and that – “we could stay with his mom til we got on our feet”

souls’ stomach churned at the reality of it all. Finally laid out in front of her. She had been with soulman for many years, and she knew there would be no changing his mind. She was ill at the time, and out of fight, so let it go, and rolled with the flow. The move was on.

Soulkid cried for days, maybe weeks. Soulman put in notice at his job, and soul began the horrible and physically over tasking job of packing a three bedroom house, by herself.

Soulsis came out to help with some home repairs , such as hanging new drywall in the torn up bathroom, that had never been rebuilt after the termite devastation. And also to help paint the walls, and rip up the ruined and stained carpeting throughout. Souls physical condition wouldn’t allow her to do that much, on top of the packing by herself, while soulman worked all day. Together, they worked twelve hours a day on this house to prepare it for leaving and selling.

Before the packing was finished , and Soulsis back home, soul was beyond physical exhaustion, and once late at night she collapsed in the now bare concrete hallway. Luckily, soulman woke up when he heard her fall and was able to help her.

Yet— after a trip to the emergency room the next day, and steroids and pain meds for the lack of energy, swelling and pain - she had to continue the packing and cleaning etc, but with more help from soulman, until it was time to leave; less than a week later.

Soul, and soulkid left a couple days ahead of soulman, as he waited for his brother to fly out from New Mexico to help him finish the final loading of the moving truck, and final clean up of the house, and they were to drive back together to their moms house .

With the limited time frame the family had to move in, they did have to leave with the home in still not perfect selling condition. And they took a big loss on it, and their credit history. Making it impossible for them to buy a home for the next four years.

The soulfam had lived with “mommason” for the first couple of months in an old camper in the back yard.. of course with the freedom of using the house, shower, kitchen, etc any time. But soul and soulkid were simply miserable under those conditions. Soulman of course was “home”, soulkid and soul, were not. This was someone elses house. With rules, mom and daughter in law competing over who cooked what, how to do this or that, and of course—mom wanted to be mom, and wife wanted to be wife. It just wasn’t working out.

Soulman did have the job he was promised , but it was nothing like he was promised verbally. Nothing at all. Yes he was home every night—usually. But very late—as he had to drive nearly state-wide for some accounts. And the salary he was promised—verbally—did not mention that he had to pay his own gas—statewide—city wide—or buy his own tools—most of them..etc. the job sucked ass and after costs—paid very little back into his pocket, after costs. Oh, but they were tax deductible. Woo hoo.

Lotta good that did us at the time. He took a several thousand dollar pay cut—to bring us to Hell.

As the weather began to change – and the rain came and came and came—and the mud out back was disastrous—we still didn’t have money for our own home. So someone, thought it would be a great idea to transform on of the storage sheds into a temporary living quarters. Hmmmm. Okaaaaay.

We all got busy. At the time it didn’t seem like a terrible idea.

We would haul in gravel, to cut down on the mud problem. Spread it over most of the yard—of course after we cleared the 5 foot tall weeds off of half an acre or more back there. And also level the land. Not to mention massive fence work and repair, due to our two dogs—and three, pygmy goats. (don’t even ask)

Again, soulman worked long hours, so was able to escape much of the hard labor—that once again sent me to the hospital…

Which for one—entailed emptying these storage sheds that had been filled with crap unseen for years. There was stuff in there that belonged to the boys when they were kids. Aside from an occasionally cloudy day—the heat out there was unbearable.

But mommason and I worked our butts off. I couldn’t believe how hard she worked, and all for us. She became ill too. It was just too much, and looking back on it, we should have never even attempted that further than the thought of it. it was all a bad idea.

Except for the fact that the end result was that we got her sheds cleaned out, many many years of unwanted crap hauled to the dump, and the large truckload of gravel laid out back.

Which in the end, left a much better looking yard than before.. but it wasn’t cheap—or painless to get it that way.

The thing about laying the gravel though? we rented a bobcat for use in the yard..

not this kind-

but this kind--

It was a little bit fun running around on the bobcat for a couple of days. For soulman and soul both. Neither had ever driven or used one before.

But—on the final day of having the rented bobcat, soulman got in a hurry to finish leveling the last bit of land and gravel. There was an old gas meter—the type that stands from pipes out of the ground.

He was working outside by himself when he hit the wrong lever in the bobcat , and instead of the “shovel – scoop” going back—it went forward, and it knocked the meter right off of the underground pipe! Gas was coming out of that pipe so fast you could see it, big plumes of white—almost like steam. And the sound it made was terrifying. If you’ve ever seen what gas explosions do .. this was very very scary.

At the time, luckily everyone else was inside the house when soulman came rushing inside. I couldn’t see him due to the way the house is designed.. but apparently mommason did see him. He stuck his head in the door.. all we heard was-

“I just busted a gas line! Everyone get out of the house!” and then he was gone again.

I was like – “oh you’re fulla crap”

Because he is always the jokester. Always doin stuff like that, but I guess he hadn’t said something so serious in his joking before.

At that time, mommason says

“no, he really did, I saw his face, he was white as a sheet!”

two of mommasons’ sisters were there visiting, along with all of us…and two cats and two dogs.

While the three of them began grabbing purses, I immediately went to find soulkid. Once I found her—luckily not far, just in the other room, I ran her outside, and put her into my car. Then I had to rush to the back yard to the camper, and begin grabbing animals. First the dogs… at the time it was chicklet and midnight.. (both now are in heaven, but not from this)—they were well behaved and I was able to get them both at once.

Then once I got them into the car with soulkid, it was back for the cats, who were not so easy to round up as the dogs. I had to run them to the car one at a time, because of spot, she will scratch your face off in a heartbeat, especially back then.

Finally I had all my “kids” safe, and was able to go talk to soulman, who while I was rounding up kids and animals, was able to shut the gas off. He had found a rag and a wrench and without causing a spark was able to turn it off.

But he was just pacing around, feeling horrible about everything. Partly guilt, partly relief that it wasn’t worse than it was.

While we were doing our part, mommason had called 911, and her sisters notified the neighbors—“umm scuze me, your house may blow up at any time!”

Would you believe no one came out of their house?? I damn sure would have. I think. Or maybe they felt safer inside? Who knows. Or maybe I would have driven somewhere? But to just sit there and quietly wait for an explosion? Kinda strange.

Anyways, it really took a long time for the gas man to get there, and not one fireman, or police man showed up at all. Something else we thought was odd. Thank God soulman was quick on his feet , even in a panic . he was an emotional mess, everything he loved and lived for was right there, and he almost blew us all up.

I can only imagine how he felt. But nobody was angry with him. Shit happens.

We were broke as hell, and of course had to buy mommason a new meter… 200.00, but were able to make payments, so it wasn’t horrible.

The whole incident did however make us realize that we were not going to continue killing ourselves, emotionally or physically with the shed and yard remodel… although we had reached the stage that little more needed to be done. Build walls, cut out a couple windows, build a bathroom, and have the shed moved… but after that—and doing the math for the completion… we decided we’d survive in the camper/ and house.

When it got cold , around October or so, we moved into the guest room inside, and soulkid into the computer room, which of course she hated at that age.. no music, no privacy, people in and out for the computer. I really felt bad for the poor girl.

I felt bad for me too—no smoking inside—meant smoking in the camper outside—and yall know I spend the first three hours of my day chainsmokin and drinkin coffee. I sat in that 30 degree camper and cried on many a day. I hated it. the more I did it, and more soulkid was deprived of being a kid—or herself—the more depressed the two of us became. And when we became a couple mental crackers—soulman realized… we weren’t “home”… we had to get our own place— so by early December we did just that.

It was an overpriced rented piece of crap, but it was ours.

And life went on… slowly and miserably, and as my health and mind dwindled and soulkid continued to despise that state as much as I do--- soulman realized what a mistake he had made by bringing us back there.

And we left. He got his old job back here in texas—surprisingly without taking a pay cut. And we were HOME again by august.

Never to return—well except to visit the mommason.

I can deal with a few days out there, but will never ever live there again. Soulman has been forewarned by both soulkid and the soul -- you go back buddy—you go alone.

I think we’re safe.

The end.