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Monday, March 12, 2001

Nothing I could think of sounded bland enough for me to eat last night. With my digestive system reenacting World War III, even vegetable soup seemed risky. I have a lot of food in this house, and some of it is even considered "good for you," but everything I found looked about as safe as eating a hand grenade.

So I made a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

And then another one, and some ice cream, cookies, and pudding. Then I ate a granola bar and took a breath.

No further damage seems to have been done by all this, but I might as well have put forth a little more effort and fixed a real meal. I don't cook well or often, and I have a severely restricted repertoire, but I'd be a whole lot better if I weren't so lazy about it. It just seems to take so much longer to prepare than it does to eat. That might be worth it if I were cooking for a family, but it's just me here. It takes all my motivation to fix pasta two or three times a week.

Probably I should get after the landlords to do something with the sprinkler system here. About half of it is hooked up, but it comes on at odd times, and several sprinkler heads are missing (so water flows like a fountain, over the walkway, missing the plants). The instructions are inside the timer box, on a piece of paper that has been chewed beyond recognition by snails.

The birds like the occasional mini-floods created by this haphazard system, but I can do without getting sprayed while walking in from the garage. Soon I'm going to need to start watering the parts of the garden that don't have the advantage of being next to the working sprinklers.

Everything is still green, but I remember how dead and dry some of it was when I moved in last fall. We still have a few more weeks of possible rain, but within a couple of months our hills will take on that golden California glow.

A weird side effect of the screwy sprinkler system is that when it goes on, the kitchen faucet starts leaking. I don't know what the connection is, but it happens every time. If the stopper is in, the sink can fill up pretty quickly. And the oddest part is that it's the hot water that leaks. If I turn off the hot water under the sink, it stops leaking. I can turn it back on the next day and it won't leak — until the next time the sprinklers decide to come on.

My plum tree is getting its first blossoms.

plum blossoms

When I moved in here, the former tenant had one request. He asked me to look after his young plum tree. I said I would, but he never told me what to do. I wasn't even sure which one was the plum tree, but I made a guess based on a process of elimination. I kept it watered until the rains started, and now it has these delicate white blossoms.

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