One of my jobs earlier in the year was to do a minor work on the patio doors to ensure that they shut propperly for the winter with all the locking points connecting to create a proper seal from the elements outside. With that successul the next thing I want to do is to replace what is called the slave lock on one of the doors. The original one had suffered as a result of the weather being able to sneak in. While it does still work, it’s very stiff to use, often needing a screwdriver to act as a lever to help raise the bolt. Therefore, so that I can freely open both patio doors I’ve purchased a replacement lock. A few measurements and a bit of internet searching and I had found what I needed. I won’t fit it to next year as there’s no need to now, but it will be nice not to wonder if I really want to have both doors open in what I hope will be another nice summer.
One of the few issues with riding in the Arizona heat twice a year is that it affects materials in a way that cooler climes won’t. I’m talking about some sticky stuff here. Glue. I know from books I’ve taken out there (yes I’m old fashioned when it comes to reading materials) that if I’m not careful the pages detached from the effect of the heat on the glue. The same happened on my last trip with the hat band on one of my riding hats with the glue failing. Re-gluing wasn’t really an option with this type of material, but I am fortunate that I have a mother who is truely gifted with a needle and thread. While this was a relatively small job it has none the less solved the problem permenantly.
A number of years ago I had a North Face Nuptse jacket that was the warmest jacket I had ever owned. It served me well for a good number of years before it wore out. So effective was it that it even kept me warm in a stationery car with the engine off for over 3 hours while I was stuck in snow and bad weather due to an accident further up the road that needed to be cleared. At no point with it on did I feel cold. Bored and needing the toilet yes, but cold, no. After the extreme cold earlier this year and the possible threat of a repeat, I decided it was time to reinvest.
(In line with current blogging practice, I should point out that I am not being paid or receiving goods in kind by North Face to mention their product or brand).
Clearly I had chosen to turn the heating on just at the right time as much to my surprise (and most people locally), in the morning I was greated by a light dusting of snow. Compared to early in the year this is just a dusting and it will be gone by the end of the day if not sooner. However this is a fairly significant snowfall as this is the first time in 30 years that I can remember snow falling this early in the year. Whether it’s a one off or a sign that the snowshovel will need to be on hand again this year I’m not sure, but in a year where the weather has had extremes, this is just another instance of the unusual year.
Maybe it was yesterday’s snowdrop or maybe it was sitting on the sofa thinking that my nose was cold, but the heating has gone on. I’m lucky that I don’t feel the cold generally so it must have been a sign that it really is getting cold now that I was starting to feel it. I will have the heating higher than the temperature at which I will normally think about turning it on as there is a level of comfort that I may as well have as it’s on with having the house overly warm.
I moved one of my winter/spring pots out of the garage last week as I had noticed that a bulb has started to poke through. Today it the flower came and it was a snow drop. None of the other bulbs have pushed through yet, so it’s still on it’s own, but sometimes I feel that a single bulb in flower can be just as stunning to look at as a whole bunch. Others will follow I’m sure, but I think that it’s probably fair to say that with the snowdrops now coming, so is winter.
With the main gardening season over and the weather this weekend continuting to be pleasant enough to spend a few hours outside, I decided to do some preperation for next year. After a year of use I have a number of garden tools that were in need of sharpening so that they don’t damage plants when they are pruned.