Sunday, October 9, 2011
MACHINES & MESSES
A couple of weeks ago all the residents in our apartment complex were notified that a new Cable company would be taking over providing our large complex with Cable TV. We also learned that this would require replacing the underground wires. At the risk of sounding somewhat jaded, our reaction was pretty much "I'll believe it when I see it."
So imagine our surprise when one morning last week we began hearing trucks and other equipment parking in front of our unit. It wasn't just one truck, it was LOTS of trucks - some with equipment, some with rolls of wire, and some full of workers carrying shovels who were going to do the grunt work.
In the picture above, if you look carefully you can see the carport on the other side of the street where we park our cars. The notice we received didn't say we would need to move our cars elsewhere if we intended to use them, but as truck after truck arrived, it sure seemed that our cars might actually be blocked in.
If there was one good thing about what was going on, aside from the fact that it appeared this was a "for real" event, we had a beautiful day that day. The sky was the color of a swimming pool, there were some white puffy clouds above and not a trace of smog, haze or coastal eddy, the latter being a familiar happening in our area. It was a perfect California day.
The best part of the day came when a "DitchWitch" was moved to the end of our building. For the world it looks like its design was based on some kind of a live critter. Jerry was far less captivated than I was; his working career was around the construction of buildings, so he headed over to the DitchWitch to renew his acquaintance. I grabbed the camera, because I DO like machines, and this one was so interesting.
On the front of this DitchWitch was a boring tool that for the world made it look like some kind of bug with a proboscis probing around. Whatever the workers needed to do, they did in good time and the machine moved on to the next building.
In our complex there are 98 buildings, each containing 13 or 14 individual apartments. There are a number of crews working on this project, but even so I'm sure it's going to be a while before it is finished. I also am sure that when the job is done and the cable company sends around its brochure announcing the new lineup and the various options we will have, mark my words the costs will have gone up considerably from what we are paying now.
Luckily we are not big TV watchers, so we always sign up for just the basic plan. Our last basic plan was fairly reasonable, but I think to punish those who didn't want to sink all their entertainment budget in cable TV, they removed CNN from the lineup. Well, there's not much left the new cable company can remove, so I suspect we'll just be charged an arm and a leg to get the broadcast channels through cable. Next step down is rabbit ears!
Anyway, the streets are back to normal now, the machines are elsewhere and we can get in and out of the carport without fear. So goes life in retirement. Sometimes even a machine is an occasion!