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April 17, 1999
a year ago

Shopping Spree

Today was quite an adventure, a big shopping spree in some manner of speaking. The funny money wandering into other pockets for a few things that we needed. We went wandering about the north Denver metro area and managed to buy ourselves an Asko dishwasher, order a full-up computer system so that I can do dictation at home, get a set of Oak bookshelves, buy two packets of feathers, get everything necessary to set up my herb box outside, and eat some great burgers.

Asko makes dishwashers that use less water, less power, and are nearly entirely noiseless. They also include the ability to just turn on a fan instead of using a heater element, and in this climate that's perfect, as the air outside the dishwasher can always use a little humidity. They're a European company that really got into the low water and low power usage, and the dishwasher's power usage is completely off the scale used in the U.S. for comparison. It's pretty cool.

The real trick of the day was actually fitting everything into and on the Range Rover and getting it all home. The 7' oak bookshelves went on the roof rack. The dishwasher went into the back area. The 10 cubic feet of loam and manure mix and the 5 cubic feet of top soil fit just behind my seat. The six foot planter box just fit across the back seat along with the shelves from the bookcase. There was just enough room for the feathers and us and the two pamphlets I got on herb planting and on Thermador appliances.

John had done all the phone work on getting the best prices from all the places we could find. He found the oak shop that was having a clearance sale because they were moving, the appliance store that was selling off last years models of the Asko, and the computer store with the best overall price for the base unit we were looking at. The feathers and the burgers were accidents. I think that the burgers made it all worthwhile, though. Yeah. All as in 'moving out to Colorado from Washington' kind of worthwhile.

Good Times is a lot like In and Out, a burger place in Southern California that I've missed like blazes out in the Northwest, and sure they have Dick's, which is good; but it's not the same, though the fries are darned good and from fresh potatoes. But Good Times had bacon-guacamole burgers, and they did the burgers fresh the moment you order them. They were hot burger, cold lettuce and sweet-ripe tomato slices with creamy guacamole and chewy-crisp bacon between hot, just toasted buns. Wow. Just wow. The guac was also pretty spicy, but not so hot it hurt at all, just a warmth to make the mouth tingle.

What really made me crack up, thought, was the Bonanza parking lot we pulled into in order to eat the burgers. The interesting aspect of the day was that John still can't back-up in the Range Rover, for some reason the car just won't go into reverse. It's a quirk. So we've had to park in places that we can pull forward out of, or use gravity as the assist for backing up. It really made the warehouse guy crack up when we went to pick up the dishwasher, when John said that he couldn't back up.

The reason the Bonanza made me crack up was because as a little kid, in Indiana, the Treat Dinner was to go to Bonanza and actually have real, American steak! I don't know why that cracks me up, still, but it does. A little like remembering, in Southern California that my favorite Italian place was Vince's, which was right next to the ice cream parlor. Anyway, I hadn't seen a Bonanza for, literally, decades, and here one was providing good parking space for us to eat our burgers.

The day itself was utterly sunny. Clear and bright. That was a bother, sometimes.

Home again, home again... dinner was a fairly low-fat macaroni and cheese recipe by Pepin, which I've been wanting to try. It turned out lovely, crisp on the top, creamy inside, with sweet tomatos lending an interesting accent to it. I also put lemon pepper penne in it. Okay, so it was called penne au gratin, but that's mac and cheese to me.

Then out again to catch Jackie Chan's Twin Dragons, which was fun but nothing great. Then we wandered into the Bigg's to find dessert and some African violet food. Yay! The best thing was finding the Philedelphia Cream Cheese cheesecakes in the freezer section. They really do it right and the cakes are small enough that I don't feel too guilty getting them.

One thing on the brain was that Dr. Thayer's officer wrote me a note saying that the insurance didn't accept the claim for my knee brace, and then I looked in my records and it was Great West that sent me a note saying that someone had written them a claim that they couldn't fulfil because it was past time. I clearly remember telling Dr. Thayer's office about my change of insurance, and asking, pretty clearly if they had the new stuff on record and to be sure to submit it to the right place. I think that the reality is that I have to change my expectation. Medical insurance gets crazy enough that mistakes are made.

Not that I like that.

But to really deal with it, it makes absolutely no sense to get upset about it. Sleep came pretty easily after I figured that out

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