Thursday, July 3, 2008

Hail Marry, for Fabric!

Yesterday a guy from the Base Exchange called to say they just marked all the fabric 50% off and to come quick because the word seems to have gotten out. They don't have wonderful stuff left, but I could most definitely find something to use it on. Kaitlyn will probably end up with a lot of floral clothes. =) Oh yes, back to my hail Mary to get to the BX. I couldn't drive my car to base (more on that later) so I had to bike Kaitlyn and I, in the name of cheap fabric, the four miles. I was almost on base when I came up to some construction. In the UK they don't have little guys stand in the road with "stop/go" signs they actually have lights set up. I'm on a blasted bike how can I go through a one lane construction area while the light is green without getting run over?!!!! For heaven's sake it was scary. I took the notion to use the side walk. I wasn't supposed to do that, but I thought it would be safer. The only problem was the sidewalk only went halfway through the construction area. I needed to cross the street to get on the sidewalk there, but that is when I noticed the "construction" was actually them working on the power line. I really did a dangerous zigzag through the area until I made it. I was a half a mile from the BX and it started to rain. Thankfully it was a drip here and there so we didn't get soaked. Oh, I need to show you our ride... Okay I can't pick out my bike online, but its a Diamondback brand. Here's Kaitlyn's ride.

So I'm dragging my child through the sprinkles for the sake of cheap fabric. I did buy some fabric, had some lunch, checked the mail for the road tax disk (more later), then started the dreaded ride home. Of course there was crazy traffic trying to leave the base. Everyone was stuck before and after the main roundabout trying to get through the construction lights. I did another hail Mary to get to the front of the line. I simply didn't have the nerve to try going through the construction again. I turned down the first street I came to and asked someone if there was another way around. She kindly told me where to turn and I took off. It really was out of the way, but I was grateful to be on the other side of the construction and safely on the bike designated sidewalk. One thing I left out is just after leaving the base I looked back and Kaitlyn was slumped over in her seat. My crazy fabric shopping/bike ride cut into her nap time. I had to lay her over in the trailer. I guess I didn't have to, but I did it because she didn't look comfortable. Before we made it home it started to sprinkle on us again. I kept praying the whole time that my legs wouldn't give out before we made it home and that the rain would wait until I could get Kaitlyn in. Just as I was getting home the rain started getting a little heavier. I was able to get her in with only a few wet spots. By the time I put the bike away and collapsed the trailer the rain had stopped. I fed the dogs then went for a much needed shower.

Why couldn't I drive my car you ask? Picture smoke coming out of my ears right now. In the UK you must pay road tax. They tax EVERYTHING here. Or most everything. You cannot pay the road tax until you are two weeks out of it expiring. I wasn't on the ball and ended up turning in the check and paperwork five days before the deadline. They told me it takes 7-14 days to get the disk in. We are now on day eight and so far nothing. In the US you could probably get away driving with expired tags, but here I go on base where they routinely check those things.

Tomorrow is the big 4th of July party on one of the local bases which is open to the community. There is no way I could bike all the way there. Neal has to volunteer for three hours so it looks like Kaitlyn and I will have to ride with him. And yes we do have 4th of July parties in the UK. We celebrate being liberated from these people by inviting them to our party. Hehehe... We never stay long because it gets crazy crowded with British nationals. It's one of the few times they can go to a fireworks show.

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