If you've read this blog for any length of time, my frustration with all things mechanical is well known. Back in the days when I lived at Reata South, I would regularly be reduced to tears and tantrums by the lawnmower, the weedeater, Big Red, anything with moving parts and/or instructions. This past week has been no different.
As I may have mentioned, my oldest boy cousin from WA is in
1. Boy Cousin gets the lavender bedroom
2. Teenaged Cousin once removed gets The Barge, which made up, is twin-bed sized and quite comfy.
3. Roxie gets an alternative-bedding-solution in the empty bedroom.
And thus began the Trial-By-Air-Mattress. As it turned out, Pebbles and Slater still had the camping air mattress that Bick bought for our camping trip last year. "Great!", I thought. I can use that and then return it in the Great-Stuff-Swap of September, 2011. So, I swing over to Dallas and pick it up last week. I decided to get a head start on all of this, so a few days ago, I unfurled the thing. No pump. I called Pebbles to ask about it. She said they never got it and didn't I remember her telling me that they had to blow up the queen-sized air mattress by mouth on their last outing? No, I hadn't remembered.
I remembered that Bick used some sort of pump he had that plugged into the lighter in Colorado last year. So I thought, well, I'll just go buy a pump. So I do just that. And try to make the pump work. Turns out, not universal. So I return the $15.00 air mattress pump and decide to buy a whole new kit, even though I hate to own more stuff. I get around this by deciding to donate it to Pebbles' and Slater's camping gear, since the original mattress is going north in a couple of weeks.
So I get home the new kit. I buy batteries. I read and re-read the instructions. I figure and futz and fume and use many F words in trying to get this damned thing to hook up and inflate. There are tears and recriminations. Finally, finally, finally, the magic happens and the mattress inflates within a mere seconds. It is a thing of beauty. And so for the next several days, my new mattress sits in the bedroom, awaiting use.
I go about planning the rest of the cousins' stay. Meals, outings, how to minimize those poor, pale PNWers time in the blistering heat of Texas in the midst of a 30-year drought and heatwave. I've got lists. My lists have lists. And then I get the call last night.
"We've already pre-paid for the hotel in Dallas. We'll just swing by for dinner and a visit and then head over. We want to be closer to the airport". Well, okay then. It's not really closer to the airport, but I'm taking life on life's terms these days, so it will all be just fine.
Except now it's time to get the genie back in the bottle. I need to get the air mattress deflated and back in it's handy carrying case. I get out the instructions. The instructions for deflating are about as instructive as the instructions for inflating. Again, after several misfires, mistrials and misery, I get the pump hooked up in reverse to get the thing De-flated. And in a feat of map-like folding, I get that rubber monstrosity re-origamied and back into it's purse. Whew!