Monday, July 14, 2014

The Best Laid Plans...

Sunday was a glorious day - sunny, not too warm, and mountains for Le Tour de France. What could have been better? Yet fate still managed to throw kinks into the day despite our best intentions.

Tony Martin from Team Omega Pharma Quick Step won the Stage
in impressive style. He broke from the peleton at 5K and rode his
breakaway, almost always completely alone, until the end. Very
well done and an impressive ride. 

We started by watching Le Tour, after all - mountains. Not the Alps or the Pyrenees, but at least cat climbs and serious hurt with splitting of the Peleton over long passages. All was good. DH made sausages for breakfast and we each made our own omelettes and then it was time to figure out what to do with our day.

We live on a heavily wooded lot and want to clear away some of the
wilder trees and get a bit more curb appeal as well as put up a new
shed in the backyard. About 20 trees will have to go, not counting
smaller saplings. It's been a real job, but DH seems to be up for it. 

A day without a schedule drives DH crazy. Me? I can settle down with writing, reading, beading, or any other items on a very long list of things I love to do, but he needs structure. Originally he thought about taking down some more trees, but he'll do that on Tuesday instead. Then - inspiration struck! The MAILBOX.

Although these aren't my old box, they're not that dissimilar. 

Our mailbox is the original one that came with the house when we purchased it more than 20 years ago. It has had a very hard life, and was rusting badly and in dire need of replacement. His decision - to replace the mailbox. After fighting and struggling, we finally got the old mailbox off the post and stabilized the post in the ground. Then it was off to the hardware store to purchase a new box.

Although colorful would have been fun, I decided I wanted plain black. We
can always paint it down the line after it's had a few rough winters. 

The sheer variety of mail boxes was enough to stop us in our tracks. It took more than 30 minutes for DH and I to come to a consensus on which one we wanted. Then we had to figure out what else we needed. You see - normally mail boxes are now mounted upon square posts that fit into a molded plate that screws into a recess in the bottom of the box. But he wanted to use his round pipe and not replace the pole (my pointing out that he could just put the square pole over the round one hit deaf ears.

We searched through the plumbing department for a collett that would allow us to modify our setup, but that didn't pan out. Back down at the mail boxes once again, we found a bracketing system that would work, at least we felt more confident about it.

We ended up with some rather nice gold stick-on
numbers similar to this, but with a bit more flair. 

After choosing numbers for the box (we have to have the address numbers clearly indicated on the box for the post people), and having a minor discussion about size and color, we ended up with gold numbers - very pretty against the black of the new box.

Home again, the brackets worked well - at least they gripped the post strongly. Of course they were too narrow for the box, so we pulled the ends out to meet the box. Then they weren't aligned with the pre-drilled holes of the box. Hmmm. DH brought out iron strips to help with the mounting. Drilling through iron - oh joy! NOT! But he managed after growls and complaints.

I love this show and will be sad to see the current season
come to an end in a week or so. 

So finally the brackets were attached to the iron strips and the strips were attached to the box, the box was stabilized (more or less) and the numbers were placed on each side. I think the box looks really nice. But such a long tale and so much work for such a little thing. At least we had a nice dinner and watched "Endeavour" on Mystery later that night. I'll enjoy looking at my new mail box as I leave for work this morning.

Stage 10 is a wicked mountain stage with four Cat 1 climbs and
a finish at the top of the fourth one. Ooof! Tomorrow will
be the first rest day of this year's Tour and everyone will
really be needing it. 

Today is Stage 10 of Le Tour and tomorrow is the first Rest Day (and well deserved). Today's profile is mountains upon more mountains and will crack the riders even more. It's been a good Tour so far. Congratulations are in order for Germany on their World Cup victory yesterday. I'm delighted for the nation of my birth! And salutations to the Netherlands also for winning their 3rd place in the World Cup over Brazil. Lots of exciting sporting events over the weekend. Happy Monday to all!

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