Sunday, May 29, 2011

3270 My watermelon exploded!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

“[Marriage is] about being together some of the time and apart some of the time.
About entering and leaving together.
About being free to follow your own tastes
yet always conscious that there is a seat saved for you beside the other.”
-- Terry Bisson, The Edge of the Universe -


...well, I think it would have exploded if it had gotten warm.

I love watermelon. A few days ago I bought a very small round one, and put it on the kitchen counter. It was uncut, the refrigerator is too small, and you see them sitting in bins in the grocery store for a few days, right? So it never occurred to me to put it in the refrigerator.

It was ok this morning. This evening I glanced over and noticed that it looked ... deflated. It was flat on the bottom, sinking into the counter exactly like a leaking soccer ball.

I touched it, and it was empty-squishy-feeling. I scooped it up and ran for the sink, just in time for it to literally fall apart in my hands.

What you see in the photo is what happened when it landed in the sink. I didn't scrape it out or anything. There was a little "meat" in it, but not enough to so much as block the drain. It was mostly water.

I'd read a story about Chinese farmers who were losing their watermelon crops - that the melons were exploding in the fields because they'd had a very wet spring and the melons contained a higher ratio of water to fiber, and when they got warm they blew apart.


Friday morning very early I drove 1.5 hours to Harriman, NY, to get Hal inspected. He's one year old this month. I'm not ready to change the registrations yet because Suzy is still in NY and that just makes things too complicated.

He passed inspection, but I got a severe shock. Both driver's side tires have bubbles in their sidewalls. Probably from potholes. PLUS both driver's side wheels are bent. They'll need to be replaced.

Hal's tires are $417 EACH! I have no idea how much the wheels cost. Note - the guy didn't say "rims", he said "wheels".

The tires are not dangerous, but they'll eventually go flat, and they can't be repaired. They're so expensive because they're "drive flat" tires. Once the sensor says it's flat, I can drive something like 50 miles - at a lower speed - then it needs to be fixed or replaced. Well, that's the dealer's definition of "drive flat", anyway. Given that this makes three bubbled tires in four months, I think it means "drive them and they go flat". And honest, since the big pothole that blew the first one, I've been very careful NOT to hit potholes, even to avoiding the north section of route 35, and the back entrance to the post office.

Sigh. I was just beginning to get control of the finances, too.


The worst part of that diagnosis was that Fred was sitting outside with a flat tire, passenger side rear (another valve stem shot, that's the fifth of Hal's five tires in the past five months), and a holiday weekend is coming, and Daughter and Hercules are away until Monday, and now I hear Hal could go flat any minute, which would leave me stranded.

Neighbor George helped me put the spare on Fred this afternoon. (Well, he actually did it all.) The big problem with Fred is that his floor and rear axle are dropped 10 inches for wheelchair access, so an ordinary jack won't fit under him, and NO jack will fit under when a tire is completely flat. George had a compressor and pumped up the flat enough to get a special jack in there, and got it done.

George is 72 or 73, not in the best of health, and it was 88 degrees and sunny. He was bright red and sweating up a storm, lying on hot blacktop poking around under Fred, but he wouldn't be deterred. I was very worried.


Yesterday and today I did some yard work (in bits and pieces. I stopped every time I saw a trace of blood in the urine. Since I piddle about every 20 minutes (I've GOT to get this stent out!) it was easy to keep track of.)

Today my (new, replacement) gardenia bloomed. I took this picture before the blossom was completely open. There are two other swelling buds, but, if it goes like every other gardenia I've ever tried to keep, that simply means it will die next week.


1 comment:

Becs said...

Gardenias aren't easy.

You are not stranded.

I am 20 minutes up the road. Got it?