It began with guests checking out early Friday morning from the week-long SXSW film festival. Christina had found some huge mature Agave Cactus plants online that someone was donating an hour south near San Marcos. She wanted to drive there Thursday night in rush-hour traffic before I put a stop to that with a suggestion to BBQ in the park instead. However, Friday morning there was no traffic, no guests in my home, and no excuses to prevent her from making the trek down south to dig out and pick up these huge Cacti.
With a McDonald's breakfast stop, we got there by mid morning and set to work uprooting these massive saw-toothed agave plants. We used a sharp knife to slice the teeth off the leaves which allowed us to work around and carry the plants without getting hurt. After carefully uprooting each cactus, we rolled them onto a moving-tarp and picked up the pokey plants like a make shift gurney to load them into my truck. We arrived back in Austin by early afternoon, had lunch, and set to work transplanting the giant cacti. We finished planting and vacuuming out my truck within a couple hours as we set back out on our journey to Dallas for a busy weekend of fun, family, and work.
It was the annual St Paddy's day parade on Greenville which I enjoy attending with my residents each year. It was also the 1 week anniversary of my mom's return home from the hospital as she underwent a successful open heart surgery. Christina and I got to spend some time, albeit very short, with my folks as mom was still in recovery (and will remain for the next 6 weeks). We reached late Friday evening, ordered a veggie pizza, watched some TV with my folks, and went to bed. After sleeping-in we had breakfast and carted a truck-full of my residents to the Dart Rail. We rode the rail to the parade and marched around for a couple hours with beers in our hand. We enjoyed watching all the wild and drunken people festively dressed in green as we made our way to one of the many house parties in the neighborhood. There we helped ourselves to freshly grilled cheese-burgers and more beer. It was slice of heaven to enjoy simple food and respite from the hot sun and the dehydrating effects of day drinking. It was great!
My memory is a bit hazy, but somehow we all made it back to the rail and found our way safely home!
The next morning we had scheduled a spring cleaning with all of the roommates in one of the houses. The "spring cleaning" is a thorough house keeping which usually happens once a year, where each resident starts with their own room by sweeping the baseboards, wiping dust from the fans and surfaces, and vacuuming every nook and cranny. Next, the bathrooms are given a scrub, followed by a steam mop job. Each roommate then audits the kitchen by consolidating or throwing away useless items and cleaning up neglected areas such as greasy cabinet surfaces from hundreds of culinary experiments. The fridge is completely detailed where every item is removed, surfaces are cleaned, and everything deliberately replaced.
While I was in town for my mother's surgery the week before I scheduled a much needed guest bath remodel. The wall paper was peeling from the walls, and a simple paint job required a professional painter to remove and retexture the surface. This also included removing a toilet and a 70's era seashell sink basin. There was also an electrical catastrophe of my doing that put my poor residents out of their personal bathroom for the weekend.
We were almost finished with the final touches in the bathroom and house cleaning when Christina accidentally sliced her finger almost to the bone while cutting some plastic. After a short trip to the ER, despite her insistence on using duct tape, we walked out with 5 stitches on her middle finger held high above her head. We came back to the condo to finish my side of the cleaning agreement when two of the veteran roommates pitched in to tidy up the last remaining bit. It was too late to drive back to Austin after the day's events and so we decided to stay one more night with my folks which made them happy.
All in all it was just another crazy Dallas adventure but definitely something for the books...