Linda got up around 6 AM and got ready to go to the bakery. I was aware she was up but I slept in. Once up I showered and dressed for the day. I did not plan to work in the bus today so I did not put on my work clothes. Instead I needed to catch up on blog entries and take the cats to a 2 PM appointment at Plaza Veterinary Hospital in Farmington, Michigan.
I was putting a few things back in the master bedroom closet and noticed that the air-conditioning return air grill was stuffed full of insulation. We had found this in the other return air grills and removed it but we overlooked this one. I removed the grill and then removed the insulation and threw it away. There was a 1/2″ thick filter material stuffed up in the register behind the insulation. I trimmed the filter to just fit inside the grill and reattached it to the ceiling. Putting the rest of the house back together will take both of us so we will do that this evening. Besides, we like to give the carpets as much time as possible to dry out.
I went out around 9:30 AM to fuel my car and get a cup of coffee at the co-located Dunkin’ Donuts. Back home I put my floor mat back in front of my main computer station and settled in to check e-mail and work on my blog. There was a new driver available for the NVIDIA GeForce GPU in my ASUS laptop, so I initiated the download. AT&T was providing me with a 160 KB download speed and the 277 MB driver said it would take an hour to download. No point tying up the Internet connection until the download finished so I used my iPad while I waited.
The driver downloaded a little sooner than predicted and then installed quickly. When I finally opened my e-mail and had another 50 MB of stuff to download; a lot of it BCM related. They are trying to wrap up the April 2015 issue and sent me several drafts since I last checked my e-mail. I have not been 100% successful in getting folks attached to the magazine to transmit large files via Dropbox instead of attaching them to e-mails.
Tim Olsen from our GLCC chapter called yesterday to let me know he had registered for GLAMARAMA and wanted to park with the chapter. I updated my spreadsheet and need to e-mail a few folks to clarify their intentions before giving an updated coach count to the rally parking coordinator. As often happens, I did not have much time left to work on blog posts before I had to round up the cats and take them to the vet.
Both cats complained for most of the trip to Plaza Veterinary Hospital, but they are cats and that is what they do. I weighed them on the scale in the lobby and gave the receptionist the pertinent facts concerning their health. Once in the exam room I opened their carriers. Juniper immediately came out and explored the room. We were early and had to wait a while but Juniper stayed very busy. Perhaps she was looking go for a way out. Jasper did not leave his carrier. Perhaps he figured he was safer staying in there.
Dr. Carron examined Juniper first since she was already out of her carrier. The cats both got a clean bill of health other than some tartar on their teeth. Dr. Carron did not suggest, however, that they needed to be cleaned at this time. They each got vaccinated albeit for different things. Jasper also had blood drawn. He is just a month shy of being 11 years old and Dr. Carron likes to do annual blood work on cats 8 years of age and older. Juniper is due for a 3-year rabies booster in December of this year but Jasper is not due again until sometime in 2017. Besides rabies certificates we may need an International Health Certificate for each cat to get them into Mexico and/or back into the United States if we decide to make the trip to Puerto Penasco in February 2016.
I had just left Plaza Veterinary Hospital when Linda texted me that she was wrapping up at the bakery. It was already after 3 PM at that point and traffic was thick and slow in the usual places. I had a nice QSO with Mike (W8XH) on the South Lyon 2 meter ham radio repeater for the last six miles of my trip. He and several other club members bought Yaesu digital radios at the Dayton Hamvention to use with the new Yaesu Fusion 2m repeater that five of them bought from Yaesu for a special promotional price of only $500.
I got home around 4 PM and replied to Linda’s TXT message. I got the cat carriers inside and set them free. There was no hesitation about leaving the carriers this time. Linda got home around 5 PM, 90 minutes after she left the bakery, and I filled her in on the cats’ veterinary appointments. While we were chatting we got an e-mail from our son letting us know that Shawn’s tenure at the University of Michigan had been approved by the Board of Regents at their meeting today. We were understandably pleased (and relieved) to finally receive this news and texted back our congratulations. Shawna sent back a cell phone photo of themselves celebrating at a local Ann Arbor establishment. They looked very happy.
Most car dealerships in this market are open until 9 PM on Mondays and Thursdays, and neither of us was ready for dinner yet, so we paid a visit to Champion Chevrolet on Grand River Avenue between Brighton and Howell. We were greeted by Ken, but he only dealt in used cars and handed us off to Dan Danaher. He had a Chevy Colorado on the lot so we checked it out. It was not the 4-door crew cab Z71 off-road model, but it did have 4-wheel drive. We climbed in/out of the front and back seats and played with the tailgate. The front seats were fine but I could not sit in the back without the driver seat being all the way forward. The 4-door Crew Cab adds about 7″ of rear leg room but it would still be tight. That is one of the tradeoffs with mid-size trucks. The front seats fit us nicely but this is not a truck for tall and/or large people IMHO. The Z71 off-road version may sit slightly higher but we should still be able to get in/out without needing an accessory step or running board.
The MSRP for the truck we saw was just over $30,000 and overall felt very similar to the Nissan Frontier, nice but not luxurious. In other respects, however, the trucks were very different. The Colorado 4×4 models have a transfer case and can be towed four wheels down with an automatic transmission. We liked the Frontier but it can only be towed 4-down with the manual transmission and for that reason alone is not a viable alternative for us.
Dan gave us a brochure on the Colorado and made a few notes on what we are looking for. We would obviously like to see the 4-door crew cab and drive the Z71 4×4 off-road model before deciding to buy one. He said he would call if/when he had those available for us to see and test drive. If we ordered by the end of the month we would get a 2015 model but it would take 8 – 10 weeks to arrive. Starting June 1st orders will be for a 2016 model and still take 8 – 10 weeks for delivery. Recent history suggests a 0.5% to 1.0% price increase for the new model year. We do not plan to order a new car before the end of May and a 1% price increase would not motivate us to change our minds about that.
On our way back to our car we took a quick glance at the Camaro sitting outside the showroom door. If we were buying a nostalgia car thus would be it. Linda’s first car, purchased before we were married, was a used 1967 Chevy Camaro convertible. It was white with a red interior and had a 327 cubic inch V8 under the hood. No emissions controls in those days, just raw power and $0.35/gal gasoline.
We drove to Panera in Brighton and had black bean soup and Mediterranean veggie sandwiches for dinner. By the time we got home we were ready to relax. First we took the spacers out from under the living room furniture, so we had someplace to sit, and put a few items back where they normally go. I opened one of the bottles of Malvasia Bianca white wine from the Heart of the Dessert (Eagle Ranch) winery in Alamogordo, New Mexico and we celebrated our daughter-in-law’s attainment of tenure. It’s been a good year for our son and his family and it is nice to see things finally falling into place for them. The wine was very similar to the late harvest Rieslings we get from Michigan’s Leelanau peninsula; very sweet and thus a good cocktail or dessert wine. We watched the final episode from season 1 of A Touch of Frost before turning in for the evening.