Thursday, December 21, 2006

So where has he been, already?

I haven't posted in a while because I've been busy working. I'm currently in Blytheville, AR, training clients on our company's software. Training unhappy clients. It's a long, depressing story that I'll recount in e-mails with those who have a pressing need to know. All you really need to know is that I've been working late hours after work, the weather and my mood have been dreadful, and it's a toss up which I dislike the most right now: sales people or programmers.

To top it all off, yesterday I got a flat. I decided to drive into town (har, har) to get something to eat. The downtown core is much like other small cities in the U.S.: pretty close to dead. They did spruce up the place by putting up lots and lots of Christmas lights. As it turns out, I had passed all the places to eat, so I decided to negotiate the stupidly laid out main street (it has traffic islands forcing you into a Formula One chicane a block long) and head for a main road. I crossed a railroad crossing, made a left turn and drove for a couple of blocks before hearing something weird. I thought it was the muffler at first, but no. It was the rear passenger tire.

I changed the flat in the dark and the drizzle, and then ended up eating at a McDonald's, that being the first place with a bathroom where I could clean up. I got up early and headed to the Wal-Mart. The auto centre opened at 7, and I was first in line.

The tire had picked up a length of metal somehow. It cut a slit in the tire. I had to have it replaced. $80 lighter and 45 minutes later I left the Wal-Mart. When I checked the tires on the car, I heard a bubbling sound from the driver-side rear tire. I could see air bubbles on the water that had picked up on the tire; thankfully it had rained last night. Also thankfully, the wonderful Wal-Mart people (how many times do you hear that took it right back in. That tire had a piece of glass in it. It looks like I may have driven over the debris of a wreck. They were able to repair this tire, which hadn't quite deflated.

That was the start to my wonderful day, which would go downhill from there. At least I get to go home tomorrow, after work. I'm not staying over until Saturday. Instead, I'll drive back tomorrow. It should only take 5 hours or so. I understand that the people I'm training are going to be there until 5 p.m. tomorrow. Joy.

Alana's been feeling awful for the last couple of weeks. She's been sick to her stomach. I'm worried about her, which is another reason I want to go home tomorrow!

I have about half of Cormac McCarthy's new book The Road left to listen to from discs I borrowed from the library. I'll review it sometime this weekend.

The only other thing to mention is that the Wal-Mart cashier was complaining about how their auto centre opened at 7, but the managers wouldn't let them clock in until 7, so they don't really open until 7:05 or 7:10. I guess from the sheer size of the organizaton, those five minutes add up to substantial money. It seemed pretty petty to her, of course.

I'd better post this and go to bed. I'm starting to ramble... and even more than usual!

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