Saturday, June 3, 2017

A Pleasantly Disappointing Day (w/pic)

I went to bed last night with a full tank of gas in the truck. When I went out this morning, only ¾ of a tank remained. The gauge works and I smelled no leaks. I did NOT have a locking gas cap. I’ve had this truck for 10 years this month, and this is the first time that I KNOW that I’ve had gas stolen. The last time it occurred was about 20 years ago, when I still had the old GMC. I guess the kids of those thieves from back then have now hit driving age and are following in their predecessor’s footsteps. A simple locking gas cap solved the problem back then, as I knew it would today.

We took a swing up into Amish country today; it takes about two hours to get there from here. The place keeps changing and changing. It’s forever losing its remaining quaintness and character and is turning into a mega-market selling Chinese junk. You can still find some Amish-made stuff, but you have to really hunt for it. The food isn’t as good as it used to be, either. Of course, the gals who were cooking when the missus and I first went there 30 years ago are either retired or dead. The younger generation just doesn’t have the touch. They brag on their menu about their real mashed potatoes, but manage to make them taste like instant. My pork chops were great, but the pork gravy on my mangled potatoes was the absolute worst I’ve ever tasted. It reminded me of rancid fat. The green beans from the can were surprisingly good, as was the iced tea, and the view from our window seat was beautiful. I noticed a lot of fallow and just planted fields up there, I suppose due to the rainy spell we had for so long.

The missus was having a bad day today, tired quickly and was wobbly on her feet (though not dizzy, strangely enough). I even convinced her to use her cane, which is AMAZING. She managed to hit only three of her usual dozen or so shops before wearing out. I’d hoped to get to three antique shops today, in search of a grass whip (think sickle on a straight 3-foot handle) and some turning gouges. The biggest shop is now nearly impossible for me to get to with the lack of nearby parking and the heavier traffic flow, so I didn’t go there. I DID manage to quickly scan the other two shops and find a very small version of a grass whip with an 8" blade and a 15" handle (an online photo labels something similar as a “garden sickle”) and a good grinding wheel, which measures about 1-1/16" by 9", that should work on the pedal-powered grinder I plan on making from an old Singer sewing machine base. There were no turning gouges to be found, though. I guess if I don't like the length of the sickle's handle, I can always put a longer one on it.

The dog and the missus were ready to head home only a couple hours after we hit the shopping villages, so we left at least three hours earlier than usual, but I didn’t mind. We agreed that we had a pleasant, sunny day, a mostly decent meal and a drive through some beautiful country.

When I hit town, I stopped at a car parts place before heading home and bought a locking gas cap for the truck. It was about triple the price that I paid for the last one, despite being nearly all plastic. I also warned the neighbor across the road about my disappearing gasoline. He said his wife had mentioned hearing cars stop along the road a couple times last night. I imagine the first time was to let the thief out and the second was to pick him up. © 2017

Click image to enlarge.


Sunnybrook Farm said...

You were lucky that they just didn't poke a hole in the tank and drain what they needed and let the rest go in the ground.
I like the cutter, we had one similar that was used to cut corn as it was the right length and one only had to pull up on it to slice off the fodder.

Ralph Goff said...

You are lucky they left 3/4 tank of gas. I do hate thieves. Hope the locking cap solves the problem. I remember the grass whips well though ours might be different. A straight blade maybe ten inches long on a long enough handle you can work standing up. Sort of a mini scythe. We liked the as kids and used to "play" with the grass whips til we had blisters on our hands. Made us really appreciate the first push lawn mowers.

Gorges Smythe said...

Yeah, SF, This is too light to be a corn cutter, but I've seen the ones you mean.

Mowers ARE a marvel compared to the alternative, Ralph! - lol

Harry Flashman said...

That's pretty bad, having somebody come on your property and steal off you. They're stupid people. Lucky they didn't get shot.

I think the Amish are having a lot of trouble retaining young people in their faith. I sure wouldn't want to live like it was 1645.

Have you ever seen the Weird Al parody "Amish Paradise." ? It's funny.

Gorges Smythe said...

Yeah Harry, I keep a loaded shotgun by the bed, but I never woke up.

Lady Locust said...

Fun finds. It might seem surprising but many faiths are losing their young (not just Amish.). Glad you had a nice day even if it was cut a little short.

Gorges Smythe said...

Yes, LL, we're entering a graceless age, and thanks.