Dysmey Blog Archives  >  late spring vacation 3: cool and clean and full of fleas

late spring vacation 3: cool and clean and full of fleas


The clean part was Wednesday, when I cleaned out the upper room of all the stuff that I brought with me from my old bedroom last year and never had the time to unpack. A lot of that stuff was old documents that I do not need anymore. Some of those were old checks and deposit slips, which I shredded before throwing away.

I filled a big garbage bag with what I threw away. And I still have a couple of tables fill of stuff I have to sort out and put in my file cabinet, which I moved to a more reachable spot. The last box I found was full of fragile items like the seashells my folks got me on one of their last vacations.


I also swept the floor because it had wads of cat hair all over the place. My cat Isis has been very itchy lately. I discovered why this Saturday morning when I saw a black dot jump off my bed as I pulled back the sheet. Yeah, we got fleas.

But to tell the truth, I figured there were fleas on my poor cat when she kept scratching herself and had bumpy sores on her chin. So I ordered some flea medicine online. This arrived this afternoon, and I gave Isis the first of four applications. She did not appreciate it, but at least the fleas are dying on her (I counted six on the white table she normally lies down on) and hopefully those sores will heal.

I also had to resweep the living room and the upper room, and put out a soap-water dish and lamp in dark parts of the house to catch the little critters. It will take a while before the flea problem is under control.


The cool part was Thursday, when the heat and the humidity convinced me to buy an air conditioner. The first one I bought I had to take back. While I measured the sill of my living room window, I measured the inside, which was wide enough, but did not consider the sash for the outside screen, which was not.

So I returned the first air conditioner and bought instead a more expensive model. The appliance, with its tall silver plastic case, looks like one of those cleaning robots or like a narrow refrigerator. Its controls on top are relatively straightforward. It has wheels like an office chair, which makes it movable. It has a vent with a tube like a dryer's, which lets you vent the hot air out a window. It has a bucket which collects extracted moisture from the appliance.

This last feature is one of only two annoyances I have with the device. (The other is that I had to use a hacksaw to cut off one end of the window vent to make it fit in the living room window.) When the bucket is full of water, the air conditioner lets out a series of beeps and then shuts down. It stays down until the bucket is emptied of its water. Once the empty bucket is reinserted, the air conditioner comes back on. And given how humid the air has been, I have had to empty the bucket every two or three hours. This will become a habit over the summer, but the living room and adjacent rooms are bareable. To keep the vent window from being opened from the outside I put some oak dowels between the inside window and the top of the sill.

Today is nice, dry and pleasant: So I shut down the fans and air conditioners and opened some windows. It was nice enough to mow the lawn and weed some of the decorative plants.


It has been so long since I had to install Windows XP on my computer. But as it has been crashing regularly during the past few weeks, I decided that it was time to save my work on DVD and reinstall Windows on my computer. Of course, it crashed a couple of times since then, but only because the correct drivers for the ACPI (power configuration) were missing.

I got most of the important stuff. The Web-related stuff was installed Sunday morning. I tried one more time to install Bioshock, but the stupid patch server will not talk to my machine, no matter what I do. So I threw the game away.

Posted on the Dysmey Blog on 15 June 2008.