Monday Is Here And It Is Dry!

Memories:  Dad Took My Car Apart!  My first car was a new 1962 Chevy Impala Supersport.  I loved that car, and it was a mere $3000!  I drove that car everywhere, and after three years, it had 175,000 miles on it!  It was burning oil, so it needed some serious work.

On a Saturday morning, my father said, “Get your grubbies on; we will fix your car!” I had never seen my dad do any engine work (other than the lawnmower), so I was a bit worried.  Well, after five hours, we field-stripped that car.  The wiring was removed, all lines were disconnected, the radiator was out, and manifold was removed, and the heads were laid bare.  The driveway was covered in parts.  I thought all the king’s horses and all the king’s men could never put this mess back together again!

In my head, I was saying; we will never get this thing going again.  Dad had me pack up the pistons and crankshaft brings, and we headed for the local auto parts store.  Dad bought a cylinder hone,  got eight sets of cylinder rings, and an assortment of gaskets.

We honed the cylinders, dad showed me how to gap the rings, and by then, it was late; we stopped for the night.  Not counting sheep tonight; I was counting pistons, gaskets, nuts, bolts, and various thingamajigs leaping over my bed!

Prayers were said as I thought I would never see the car run again!

The poor baby; under the hood was a block of iron which one could look through and see the concrete below!

Early the following day, we reversed the process, installing the pistons, replacing the crankshaft, replacing the headers, etc.  By 5:00 pm, we thought we were ready to go.

Oops, we needed a carburetor gasket!  The car store forgot to put it in the bag, and the store was closed!  Dad had a few choice words, but he was not panicked; I was panicked enough for the both of us.

I was going to have to walk to school and work!

He called Mom and asked her to bring him a “shirt cardboard.” Huh?  What does shirt cardboard have to do with fixing a car?  Cardboard is a generic term for heavy paper-based products.  Dad found a pan, put the shirt cardboard in the pan, and poured half a can of engine oil over the cardboard.  My dad had gone nuts, maybe?  Then we went inside and had dinner!  It was getting dark!

After dinner, he laid the carburetor on the oil-soaked cardboard and proceeded to outline the carburetor on the cardboard using a grease pencil.  He told me to use scissors and cut along the grease pencil markings.  I was puzzled.  He then used a pencil to poke holes through the carburetor mounting flange hols and the cardboard.   While holding the paper against the carburetor, he used an exact knife to go around the inside edges of the carburetor and open a large hole (for the gasoline to go through).  The man was a genius; he just made a homemade gasket.

We fastened the carburetor onto the manifold, connected the cables and wiring, and the dang car started right up!

I drove that car another 125,000 miles before I traded it in on a family car!  My father was a genius!  I never appreciated his fantastic ingenuity!

We departed the house at 8:30 am to get to the PT session at 9:00 am.  I had my morning coffee at the little hamburger joint while I continued reading on my Kindle.

After the session, we took the freeway home and continued working around the house.  After calling them, I finally got the Govee lights to work; their app is disorganized!  Tomorrow, our handyman is going to put them back up for me.  Now, I can control them via the iPhone from anywhere in the world!

Mary worked inside, and I worked in the garage.  Around 3:00 pm, we went to the doctor’s office so I could get a carotid artery ultrasound.  Carotid artery disease is also known as carotid stenosis.  It occurs when plaque builds up in the carotid arteries.  You have two carotid arteries, one on each side of the neck, which carry blood to the brain.  Plaque is made up of cholesterol, calcium, and other cellular substances, and it can collect in the arteries, making them arteries stiffer and narrower.

This is defined as carotid artery disease, a form of atherosclerosis.  Clogged arteries do not deliver blood and oxygen as well as they should to the brain.  Carotid artery disease develops slowly as people age, and most people have no symptoms.

Mary watched the procedure and can now share it with my doctor.

We were home by 5:30 pm and started dinner.  Mary whipped up dinner using Rice-a-Roni, hamburger meat, fresh peas, onions from the garden, a can of sliced tomatoes, and small peppers of various colors.  It was delicious.  We had artichokes for dessert!

Hello, dinner!

I decided beef stew was going to be on tomorrow’s menu, so I used the “mise en place” method on the fixings.  It translates to “everything in its place.” In a restaurant kitchen, that means taking out all ingredients and tools, conveniently arranging them, and preparing anything necessary for cooking – like chopping vegetables or cutting up meat so they’re ready to be thrown in a pan at a moment’s notice for each order.

Did You Know?  The USDA recognizes eight different grades of beef.  In order of descending quality, they are Prime, Choice, Select, Standard, Commercial, Utility, Cutter, and Canner.

I tried to find “canner” but settled for Choice instead!

Everything is ready to go!  I waited until the last minute to cube the Choice beef chuck!

The picture was taken just before I added many mushrooms to the pot.  Within a few minutes, the house smelled like a five-star restaurant.  It was 10:30 pm when it was ready, so I made a small dish and brought it to the office where we had been working.

I’m no cook; when I want lemon on chicken, I spray it with Pledge.

Icannoto order stew when we go out because of an unfortunate incident.  We went to a nice restaurant, and I ordered rabbit stew.  I  took one sip, then abruptly spits it out.  I apparently yelled out, “waiter, there is a hare in my stew!” While cooking, it dawned on me, don’t use “beef stew” as a computer password.  It’s not stronganoff.

It took three hours and forty-five minutes, but it was worth it!

After we made a container for Jan and two containers for us, we crashed!  It has been a good day.  Tomorrow we have to get up at oh-dark-thirty to deliver The Silver Fox to the car dealership for her 35,000-mile check-up and perhaps new tires.  Precious will be going with us as the service will probably take several hours.

About Paul

Just an old retired guy trying to finish out my last years on this planet. I lost my best friend and wife in early 2020. I was blessed again by reconnecting with Dr. Mary Côté, a long-time friend. Mary and I got married July 28th, 2021, and are enjoying life together and plan to spend the rest of our lives being a blessing to our friends and family.
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