Jan 18

Campus Clean and Feminism? Huh?

I went to school today, and to my surprise I saw the same pressure-washing company working on campus as had cleaned my parents’ warehouse.
It looks like they have the job of cleaning all of the sidewalks on campus. They had several workers out and about with pressure-washing equipment.
There was a guy standing by the truck that looked like the boss. I went over to say hi and talk to him. He looked familiar to me from when they had done the job at my parents’ warehouse and I had been there watching.
I asked him what the scope of the job was on the school campus. He said they were doing all of the sidewalks on campus as well as all of the curbs.
He also said they had the contract to do building washing of all of the buildings at the school.
When I looked around at the buildings, I realized that they really did need cleaning. Most of them had mold streaks down the sides, which made them look old and ugly. I hadn’t really noticed that before.

I asked the guy if they just cleaned with water and he shook his head and said no, they have a cleaning solution that they spray out onto the buildings. He said the solution kills the mold and gets rid of it.
So anyway they were there for probably a week, not just doing sidewalks but doing the buildings also. It really looked great when they were done.
Normally I wouldn’t pay attention to that sort of thing but because they had just cleaned my parents’ warehouse, I was more aware of them being on campus.
There were even a couple of days when I took some bottles of water to them, on my way from one class to another.
I remembered watching them drink a lot of water when they were on the job at my parents’ warehouse. I could see that they were far away from their truck on campus without any water. So I just decided to take them some water and they seemed to appreciate it.
On a different subject. . . .
I’m taking a class this semester called Women’s Studies. I wasn’t sure what I was signing up for, but It was the only class that fit into that spot on my schedule.
On the first day of class, the teacher introduced herself and said she was a radical feminist and a socialist and an atheist. That was quite the combination, I thought.
It made me think that this would probably be a great class because I am none of those things she described.
I was right. The class has had some great discussions. There are some students who are afraid of the teacher, so they don’t say anything. They just sit there wide-eyed, listening.
But there are some of us who aren’t afraid of her and enjoy challenging things that don’t sit right. I’m one of those. And the teacher seems to enjoy the discussions too. I would imagine so. Seems like they would keep her from being bored out of her mind teaching the same stuff year after year.

Jan 13

Pressure-Washer Cop

So, I went on a trip to see a friend. She lives the next state over, so I made it a trip of several days, and I drove.

I think I must’ve had a sign on the back of my car that said, Police, stop this woman!

Because I got stopped TWICE during that trip! And one of those times I got a ticket.

The first time, I was trying to find her place. She lives out in the middle of nowhere, or so it felt, and even with my GPS, I was confused. It seems like the GPS was confused too. Seemed like I was driving around and around in circles, coming back to the same dang intersection.

One time I came up to an intersection, looked both ways, didn’t see any cars, and rolled through the intersection without stopping. Suddenly there was a cop behind me with his lights on!

I have no idea where he came from! He must’ve been parked behind a hill that I didn’t see, or something. And of course that was the time I didn’t come to a complete stop.

So yeah, you guessed it, I got a ticket for not coming to a complete stop at the stop sign. Geez. I’m sure his donut fund was low or something, but getting a ticket for that seems ridiculous. There wasn’t another car for miles around!

That was pretty frustrating.

As a side note, he looked just like the guy that pressure-washed my parents’ warehouse. I looked to see if he had a surface-cleaner sticking out of his squad car, but no. lol.  I almost asked if he worked for a pressure-washing company on the side, but I decided that wasn’t a good idea.
The other police incident happened on my way back home.

I had spent the whole day at my friend’s, and I was going to drive home overnight. It was like an 8-hour drive.

I had been on the road for maybe six hours—long enough that I had kind of zoned out. I wasn’t sleepy; I just didn’t really know where I was. I had plenty of gas so I wasn’t paying attention to any of the road signs saying what towns I was going through.

I was just driving and snacking and listening to music.
Suddenly I saw police lights in my rear-view mirror. I’m like, AGAIN? Seriously????!!

I pulled over. The cop came to my window with his flashlight and asked me if I knew why he had stopped me. I had no idea.

He asked if I knew where I was. I know my face was totally blank as I looked back at him because, again, I had no idea where I was. I barely knew what state I was in.

Then he asks me to get out of the car and walk along a line. Holy crap! He thought I was DRUNK!

At that point it felt kind of funny. I had apple seeds and cracker crumbs falling off my shirt, and my shorts were all wrinkly. I must’ve looked like a total bum.

Apparently I walked the line ok, because he handed me back my license and said, Ok, you can go now. I thought you might be drunk because you were weaving a bit.

Be careful, he said. Make sure you’re not getting sleepy. You only have an hour or so till you get home.
Thank God he didn’t give me a ticket. Two in one weekend would’ve really sucked.

Dec 29

Warehouse Cleaning

Moving to a bigger space as business expands

My parents decided to move their cabinet business to an actual shop closer into town, in a sort of industrial area. They found a warehouse-type of building that another business had vacated, and it was the right price and the right size for the cabinet business.

The cabinet business has grown and my parents have decided to buy some new equipment. It’s big equipment—too big for the place they have now.

One of the things they are going to purchase is a paint booth, similar to one they had back in Trehlebov. It’s the size of a small room, so you really have to have a warehouse or something to fit in a booth like that.

Also they are buying a bigger saw table.  You can see what I’m talking about in the link.

home design, custom cabinets

They will be able to put very large sheets of plywood on it and do cut-outs and all that. It’s like a huge table with a saw that comes up through the bottom. The whole thing is computerized, and that is set up at the side of the saw.

So those two things alone—the paint booth and the oversized table saw—need lots of space.

So they found this warehouse, but it’s filthy. I went with them the other day to look at.

The first thing they need to do is get it cleaned. I helped out with the process of finding a good pressure-washing company. We Googled local companies and also asked around a bit.

Yesterday the company we selected came out and did their thing. They came in a dedicated work truck with huge tanks mounted on the bed and four hose reels with different kinds of hoses, and various other pieces of equipment.

They worked the whole day on the warehouse. One guy did the roof, which looked awful. It was all streaked with mold and very ugly.

He got up on to the roof and sprayed a bunch of stuff all over it and then rinsed it. It took him a few hours, but it was transformed. The mold is all gone and it looks like a roof is supposed to look.

On the inside, they actually washed the walls and the ceiling. They had high pressure hoses with nozzles of different kinds, and they could spray their water and solution all the way up to the top.

Not sure how they didn’t short out the lights, but nothing blew, so I guess they knew what they were doing.

There had been tons of spider webs and insect stuff all over the ceilings. I was afraid to walk under it, like bugs or spiders would fall down on to me. But they washed all that stuff away. The ceiling looks like new and the walls are all clean too.

Then they took out these big round cleaning things for the floors, and they went back and forth over the entire floor, cleaning that. There were some paint stains from the previous tenant that didn’t come up, but everything else did, and the floor looks great too.

My parents are very happy with the pressure-washing company they chose. And the warehouse is all ready for them to move into.

Dec 28

Jose Gets Distressed: Distressing Wood Properly

Hommikune udu Kakerdaja rabas

Jose gets distressed: Distressing Wood


Ahhh. I miss Estonia…

Sometimes I help my parents in the cabinet shop. I’ll go in and just see what latest project they’re working on. I know pretty much everything about every step of the cabinetmaking process so I can just jump in and help.

They have a couple of people that work with them. So they aren’t completely alone.
Yesterday I went in and I saw that they were doing a building a desk for someone. It was a beautiful desk and it was made out of maple.

The customer wanted the maple desk to be distressed so when I walked in there, Jose, the helper guy, was distressing the wood. He was doing this with a hammer and a chisel and it was fun to watch.

I think I would like to distress wood as an energy reliever or a stress reliever. You can just take the chisel and a hammer, and hammer away at the wood was out worrying about what it looks like at the end.

When José was done distressing the wood, the desk actually looked pretty terrible. But then when he put the first coat of stain on it, it started to look good. The stain sank into the nicks and cracks and gouges that he had just put there with the hammer and a chisel. And it made the gouges look like they were there because of age.

The desk pretty soon looked like it was a beloved well-used piece of furniture that has been handed down from generations past.

Along with the desk, José had built a matching hutch. He had some problems distressing this wood. I’m not sure why. He was having troubles with getting the gouges and scratches and the dings to look the same as they did on the desk.

I went over and showed him some places where I thought he could do a better job. He was not very happy to hear that from me. He said, Here! Do it yourself if you think you’re so smart!

So I did. I took that hammer and a chisel and whaled away on the hutch and pretty soon I thought it looked great.

José then took the stain and stained the hutch just like he had stained the desk. I was very gratified to see that my distressing job looked great with the stain on it.

The hutch and the desk ended up matching perfectly. José put on another layer of stain, and then after that there were several coats of finish that needed to go on top.

By the time all of the coats of stain had been applied and several coats of finish had been applied, the desk and the hutch really looked fabulous.
The installation crew came and took the desk and hutch away. They installed it for the customer.  The customer was very excited. He personally called my father to say that he loved how it turned out and that the distressing looked perfect.

My dad joked with me that maybe I should take over Jose’s job. Jose didn’t think that was funny at all, and he left the shop in a snit.
Poor Jose!

Dec 17

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