CHRISTMAS LIGHTS !!
Is it just me or does the entire World suffer the same frustrations of lights at this time of the year?
Everything was working on 12th Night, it was carefully put in various boxes and suitably stored ready
for the next festive season. The post Thanksgiving ritual of humping and dumping the said boxes was
duly done and lo, once more fully functional 2010 decorations are now caput ?Of the outside lights three sets from 14 have failed and Brenda’s new sets for the downstairs tree
may just as well have been tossed when the tree was taken down. My first visit to Walmart to restock
rusults in none of last year’s type being on display ! Well think again Whittington, so lets try 3 forty six
feet long strings of the new LED type and hope they work. Replace all Brenda’s tree lights and return.
With howling winds the outside stuff is on hold but the Lodge Room decs are coming along………. but
one string of the new tree lights only half works!! No messing with the new tool here this lot are for
Harley is dressed again
Bambi joins in
Monday, and Brenda is off to town but forgets the “return” set but buys four more strings. Meanwhile
I’m completing my first run of outside lights and find myself about 10 feet short ! As I unload the car
I notice her new lights are different ? Obviously a “pick-up” error as all her new ones are on white wire
and won’t look good on a green tree. Another run to Walmart and exchange everything. The next batch
all work and the downstairs tree is complete and shines brightly once more. While I’m in Walmart I
now notice the lights that I was looking for are back on the shelves!!!
Downstairs tree all done
The “cozy’ lodge room here at the Cozy Comfort
just begging a fire
Tuesday, and between driving stints two more outside runs of lights are completed along the upper
and lower balcony and two more deer are assembled, leaving the final row of lights over the
windows and connecting up for Wednesday.
My this is taking a long time this year but we are not in December yet so don’t despair. Wednesday
and getting colder so Brenda becomes a plumber and attacks all the water spiggots in the RV park
with my Makita and then fully insulates all the water pipes. The final run of upper lights is up, 2 more
sets along the fence then set all the timers and connect up. When I return post the afternoon school
run I’m met with a blaze of color and it seems all those hours with the stapler were worth it.
Not done yet, still the outside garden area to do with the two new deer to go on the waterfall and
some new netting over the biggest outside fir tree. Two more stands are cut out of a board and 8
more pipe clamps are hammered flat to act as the restraints for the legs. More big rocks humped
round to hold the little buggers in place from the high winds and with 15 mins to spare the last timer
is in place before I have to leave for Ouray with the girls Basketball Team.
The new deer are placed on Eagle Falls
Flattened pipe clamps secure them to the boards
Predictably it starts snowing just after Rico and by the time we get on the Lizard the roads are
covered and its hard pack over ice……… by Telluride its clear again and no more problems to Ouray
where it is just bitter cold with high winds.
Not nice climbing the Lizard
Dolores win both their matches and we are on the way back just before 7 pm and its plain sailing to
the food stop in Telluride where I check the weather. The pass is open but hard pack over ice with
strong winds! Back off the loud pedal, gentle use of the retarder, and smooth steering inputs and we
make it home about 30 mins later than planned. Bus back in the barn all refuelled and collect Brenda
from the Brew Pub and back along main street towards the “glow” in the East. Cozy Comfort is now
doubling as Bethlehem and is adorned in lights! Closer inspection reveals a section of ice lights out
and about 10 feet of the new guaranteed LED string not working!!!
Friday morning so time to pull down the two offending sets of lights and set off once more for
Walmart. Collect another 2 sets of the ice lights, as we don’t want another failure come Christmas
Eve and try and find an exchange set for the LED ones. Nothing!! ……. back to the desk and ask if they
have any more in the stock room. A less than helpful employee finally arrives and tells me “They are
seasonal goods and when they are gone thats it”……… I point out to dumbarse that this can’t be the
case as its 23 days until Christmas and a good many people haven’t even started their decs yet and whichever way you look at it this is piss poor business acumen if you have products that customers
would buy and you refuse to reorder. Seems Durango have some but they can’t deliver store to store.
Well nothing for it but to drive to Durango after my School bus run at Mancos this afternoon as at least
I will be half way there anyway.
Problem strings stripped down again
Leaving Mancos it starts to snow and soon becomes thick and heavy and I’m now dealing with some
real lemons (or experienced rally drivers) as they hammer past as though nothing has changed.
Finally with the required lights I’m homeward bound and the conditions are much worse and its a bit
like the Startrek scenes as the mini asteroids come straight at you out of the darkness. Home by 7
and the lights can wait.
Saturday and another school bus run taking the girls to Mancos for more basketball. Conditions are
poor to say the least, roads covered and slippy, and snow still falling. Bitter cold, full heaters and
30-35 all the way but arrive alive and 16 little girls get to play again.
Saturday in Mancos and still snowing
A trudge up main street to a little breakfast bakery and cafe certainly gets the seasonal juices flowing.
The bakery is nearly full and doing a roaring trade with a non stop stream of visitors taking breakfast
and hot coffee……. regular gold mine here!
Breakfast at the Bakery
It snows nearly all morning but by 2 pm the roads have melted and its easy driving back to Dolores
and now pick up Brenda and go to the two Christmas craft fairs. A few purchases including a snow
man and a stop by at the brew pub for supper and a few pints. Back to the star in the east, more dog
walking and log chopping and then Hallmark Christmas movies by the fire.
Sunday and still snowing but those lights WILL go up today no matter what. Bitter cold and I mean
BITTER, some snow showers and a crisp bone chilling wind. The LEDs work and are soon up and
working—— Good! Now for the ice lights and make a critical error and assumption that the string will
be the same length,….. with 3/4 up starting at the same place this string is about 9″ shorter than last
years model!! Finally its up and working and now all that remains is the Father Christmas center piece.
All done, connected up so wait for the timers to all cut in………. 4.30 and the town lights dim as the
mighty surge sends electric meters spinning!
Need a wide angle lens this year
Ready for another “Grizwold Christmas”