Thursday, April 29, 2010

Tie-Downs ... and Balance

I know you're wondering how I can possibly get these two things into one blog post, but I think I can do it.  Walk with me...

First, let me start by saying that it's very windy in the Capital region today.  I'll come back to this.

Most days during the week, I use my lunch hour to run errands.  I work closer to civilization than I live, and then I can use precious home time NOT doing errands.  Today, I went to Home Depot to buy siding for the goat shed, because my new friends Melanie and Sue are coming over this weekend to help me put actual walls on the goat shed.  (Grateful doesn't even begin to describe my feelings, but that's another blog post.) 

Home Depot and Lowe's are virtually across the street from each other up here.  Sometimes I go to one, sometimes the other.  Today, I went to Home Depot.  Who did not have what I was looking for, but wasted time up until 1:00 before letting me know for sure (waited for someone from lumber to come help me, answer questions, try to sell me something else, I say OK, then it turns out they don't have enough, etc, etc).  So at 1:00 I told the Home Depot guy that I had to get back to work and left without buying wood.

Then I drove across the street to Lowe's.  They did have what I wanted and I bought 6 sheets of it and was back in the parking lot in about 15 minutes.  (Short aside:  people are really helpful around here.  Every single time I've started to load something big into the truck, someone has offered to help.  No fail.)  We loaded the plywood in, and then I had a vision of the strong wind lifting a piece of plywood off like a sail as I drove down the street.

Out comes the ratcheting tie-down and I spent (no crap) the next 20 minutes trying to get that thing on tight.  I did it wrong twice before I finally paused and took a deep breath and tried again.  (That reminds me of one of my favorite quotes, which goes something like: Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says ..."I'll try again tomorrow.")  I got back to my desk a little before 2.

Which is where balance comes in.  I had a long conversation with my boss this morning because a job was posted that I'm qualified for.  The drawback.  It's at corporate HQ, think suits and being on time and at my desk all day and having to be an example and a leader.  Yuck. 

My boss knows that I'm more interested in a balanced life than a star career and is totally OK with that.  In fact, is willing to build a 20-year progression around it.  He doesn't care where I am at 1:45, just as long as all my projects progress the way they're supposed to.  If I have to have a 40-hour-a-week corporate job while I figure out how to support myself on the 'stead, this is the best possible working situation I could have.

You know how you try something and it's wrong.  Then you do it again and it's wrong again.  You get a little frazzled, and I did, trying to get the tie-downs to work properly.  Thank goodness I didn't have to add the stress of being late from lunch to that frazzle!  I might never have gotten the tie-downs attached!


  1. Great post! I hear you about friends and help at the right time, and HD and Lowe's, and the wind....

    That wind.....

    I was talking to people in PA and in St. Louis today who also have that incredible wind right now!

    Good news is I am finally finishing up some crappy law work (for now) and the fruit trees were charged to my credit card, so they must have been shipped. Yippee!!!

  2. We're all wacked out with wind over here too.

    J, I was just talking to a co-worker today who had been asked to apply for another tech position over at another government agency here in town. After confirming with her supervisor that he thought we'd all be renewed for another year, she's decided to stay put.

    We agreed that we like the fact that we get to work on our own projects, and our supervisors don't care so much about when the work gets done, just that it gets done.

    It made me think how I might be tempted to stay a tech for a lot of my career if that means I've got the time (and mental energy) to pursue other things that are important to me.

    Good on 'ya.

  3. Such a good thing that you got that load secured. Otherwise, we'd have seen you flying overhead. All loose objects on the west side of the homestead were on the east side when I got home from my 35 hr a week job (no lunch hour). Let's hope it's not sailing weather on Sunday!