More happening in and around Prince George

Vicissitudes of country life …

One might argue that I don’t really live in the country.  I have a Food Lion about 5 miles away, a Starbucks about 10 miles away, Comcast cable (now Xfinity), and excellent cellular coverage.  But, in defense my self-proclaimed avatar as a rural warrior princess … I do have well water and a septic tank.

Well, no pun intended, I awoke to absolutely no water on Monday.  For some reason my well pump and/or pressure tank of 36 years had mysteriously died.  Mind you Monday was Martin Luther King Day.  Finding a plumber or well service open on such a day was a tall order.  Finding a plumber that dealt with well systems was even taller order.  Fortunately, our neighbor across the road is a great networker, keeps his home in good nick, and is a go-to resource in such situations.

Steve recommended Charles McCann of Done Right Enterprise as the man for the job.  He took the additional step of encouraging Charles to take care of us on as timely a basis as he could.  I am not sure Charles would have appeared later in the day with his wife and partner, Marie, without the recommendation and endorsement from Steve. Charles assessed the situation, provided his licenses, and gave us the estimate of cost and the promise that we would have water the next day.

The next day he appeared as promised with crew and equipment, new pump and pressure tank and encouragement that all would be well.  Again, no pun intended.

Tuesday, late afternoon, we had water and a promise from Charles and Marie that they would reappear on Wednesday to install the pressure tank.

Awaking Wednesday I jumped into the shower to clean up for my Rotary meeting … low and behold, I had failed to turn the breaker back on for the hot water heater.  It was a very cold and very short shower.

pressure-tank-2017Fortunately, Charles is a master electrician as well as a master plumber so he could install all the switches and connectors necessary for the new pressure tank. Finishing around 8 pm with the installation of the pressure tank, Charles and Marie climbed wearily into their work truck and in short order had texted copies of our warranties, pictures of the job, and copies of the paid invoice. Our water adventure was over.

Now, I think I am going to have our septic tank pumped and checked.  I am not up for another adventure of a mechanical nature.

There were other less noteworthy adventures …

The Prince George Board of Supervisors had tied votes on the two nominees to serve as Chairman of the Board.  One member was absent due to a workplace accident. The next meeting should result in one of the two being elected … more about that next time.

A Petersburg citizens group called Clean Sweep filed petitions to have the Mayor and Vice Mayor removed from the city council.  That should have an expedited fuse.  It is an uphill battle, but at least the citizens are involved.

The City of Hopewell continues to recruit for a Finance Director as the last one abruptly resigned a couple of months ago.

These matters pale in comparison to my own personal dramas.





How Do I Know Summer is Passing?

I know summer is passing because …

Granddaughter Emma has returned from summer with her father in the mountains of North Carolina.  She is 10 now, but somehow, older than ten — an inch taller, 2 shoe sizes larger and with pierced ears.

Elections are 60 days away.  Virginia has an election every year.  Does that happen elsewhere?  Being a Democrat in Virginia is tough going.  I know there are a lot of closet Democrats, but why?  The Republicans I’ve seen aren’t that scary, not necessarily very bright, but not scary.  Prince George County has 10 precincts in its 267 square mile footprint.  Xena gets a lot of miles on her every election day.

Acorns are dropping.  People with a lot of oaks know what I am talking about.  Sadly, we lost many of our oaks in Irene last year and subsequently had a few more taken down.  Broke my hear tto have them felled but watching oaks bending over double through my skylights is somewhat anxiety provoking.

Speaking of storms — I know it is Fall because it is hurricane season.  I am afraid of all storms that begin with “I” such as ice storm, Isabel, Irene.  I heard a couple of weeks ago about Hurricane  Isaac and thought oh, s****.  Thankfully, Isaac only threatened Republicans.  Of course, by now I know and have experienced a derecho so must add “d” storms to my scared-of storms list. Let’s not talk about the Louisa earthquake.

Finally, I know Summer is passing because I am longing for sweater days even though it is in the 90s most days.  But, Jack’s Aussie undercoat is starting to grow in so sweater days are not far away.

Where is that LL Bean catalog?  Image

Tempest in a Tea Kettle

Prince George County, Virginia is still miffed at POTUS. Why? Well, let’s put aside for the moment that this, this urban ChicagoHawaiian…..Democrat took Virginia blue in 08; that he is well … different and other; and ….. shhhh.

The most recent upsets at President Obama is that he visited Prince George County in March 2012 and cost the county $38,500 in overtime and construction costs.

His was the first visit to Prince George County of a sitting President since Taft visited in 1909 to dedicate the Pennslyvania Monument in the Battlefield National Park.

In coordinating President Obama’s visit,  it was clear that traffic and crowd control of unusual levels were needed as well as the presence of emergency medical first responders.  Inadvertently the visit also tested the ability of the first responders in the area localities to plan and execute the duties required of all involved.

Prince George also had to clear a parking and bus staging area to shuttle the invited attendees to the Rolls-Royce facility where POTUS would be speaking.

Here was President Obama highlighting an innovative marriage of manufacturing, research, higher education interests in little “ole”  Prince George County.

But unfortunately, what was not known to his staff and speech writers was that Prince George is separate from nearby Petersburg and that cities in Virginia are independent of the surrounding or nearby counties. He made repeated references to Petersburg, its eateries or at least to Longstreet’s and to elected Petersburg officials.

That sat sourly  in the stomachs of Prince George officials who were not even mentioned, so sourly that Supervisor Carmichael wrote a long, literate and polite letter to the White House about the gaffe.

Coming back to the $38,500 … it might sit more lightly as a cost of economic development and international recognition had the President gotten the locality thing right and extolled  Henry Parker, who has been on the Prince George Board of Supervisors since Taft’s visit in 1909.

Speaking of Taft … Xena wonders how much his Presidential visit cost.