Saturday, August 18, 2012

A Little of This, a Little of That Kind of Day...

Bar Harbor, ME   High: 78   Low: 62
Antiques & bookstore in Trenton, ME

It was a catch up day today....Sparky did laundry this morning...Then this afternoon, she went to the antiques/bookstore in Trenton to check it out. Nothing too interesting, prices seemed very high. Sparky didn't check out the books, she didn't see the book section and was pressed for time. She did see a few things from her childhood, like these Stangl "Sportsman"duck ashtrays. My dad used to be quite the smoker--I remember smelling his pipe and tobacco scent on the ashtray when I was little. This ashtray was 36.00. There were two more besides this one. There also was an interesting potato masher that caught Sparky's eye. Didn't catch the price, but I thought about it. (And she doesn't even mash potatoes any more! Go figure! says E.) It's just cool, I like it!

Sparky thinks it's more fun looking at "Dusty Old Thing" on Facebook, than browsing this particular shop. There seemed to be mostly furniture,  china, dishes, and jewelry at the store, which of course, is common. Sparky likes to try and find things from the fifties that she used to see in her house during her formative years. She remembers lots of hatboxes. "My dad wore a hat every day to work in the fifties, and he kept them in men's hatboxes in his closet. They had a very masculine smell to them. His more formal hats were stored in tissue paper in the hat boxes. Every once in awhile, I'd go looking in his closet, get out his hats and try them on when he wasn't home. I'd get in BIG trouble if I was caught doing that!"

Other than that, there wasn't much else she could relate to....So, time to head back home again....

Time to try to fix the living room Fantastic Fan...We think yesterday's heavy rain got to the rain sensor as our living room fan quit working. Or, maybe it was a fuse. Eldy got the fuse out, we checked it, it looked fine. Sparky went to put it back in, got a bad case of the "butterfingers" and that little fuse popped out of her hand and went rolling under the slide, wedging itself below the edge of the floor tile. Since Sparky is the more flexible one, SHE had to get down and get dirty.

No amount of sweeping with the fly swatter could budge the fuse up over the thick edge of the quarry tile which stopped under the slide kitchen cabinets. Sparky heard Eldo use some BAD WORDS....Oh-oh! She needed to redeem herself. So she thought of the ingenious method of making a little wire loop extension from her extensive craft wire collection. See, Eldo? Craft stuff comes in handy. (No comment)

She fished and fished with her little wire contraption until---SUCCESS! She lassoed the fuse and we were back in business. Inserted the fuse more securely in the slot, and the fan worked!

Later this afternoon, we went to Bar Harbor  to look at bikes at the Bar Harbor Bicycle Shop. This is a full service bike shop with over 300 Trek bikes for rent, about 25.00 a day. We think we heard that every year they sell off the current rentals and purchase new bikes. They sell Treks, Cannondale, and Specialized. Sparky went for a spin on a couple different bikes...a "Specialized", and a Trek Hybrid. Sparky LOVED the Trek hybrid. But first, she had to get more information from the fellows that run the shop.

There are two brothers that run the shop, Al and Joe. They were absolutely wonderful to talk to. Al spent over an hour discussing our needs, what might be beneficial, what the different bikes have to offer. It was interesting to learn that there are basically just three major manufacturers who make all the bike frames sold in America. From there, the bikes are customized with gear setups, crankcase options, and stuff like that. Al was extremely thorough in his questioning and suggestions. He told us more stuff-- like disc brakes (yes, they have now have them on bikes!) and all kinds of technical stuff in easy to understand layman's language. He managed to find out--hmmm-m-m-m, Sparky didn't tell him---that we are seriously under inflated on our current bikes. Sparky is always afraid of popping a tire and having it explode in her face, so we've been running tire pressures on our bikes at about 45 pounds. Guess who always leaves the tire inflation up to Sparky! Guess Eldo might be a little afraid of blowing up a tire as well!

Al said we should be running the MAX pressure listed on our tires--60 pounds! Bike tires are NOT like RV tires, where you DON'T run tire pressure stated on the tire, you run pressure according to weight distribution on the RV. On bikes, you should run just about at the top max pressure stated on the tire. He had Sparky's tires pumped to correct pressure on the Navigator, (60 p.s.i) and WOW! What a difference in rolling down the street! No wonder hills on the carriage roads have been so difficult for us! We've been REALLY under inflated all this time. No excuses now for Eldy not to come out on a bike ride, is there? (Well, yeah, our comfort bikes are still very heavy, and it's still WORK to get up hills on them, he says.) True, true....

The bike shop encourages you to take the bikes out for a RIDE--not just around the parking lot or a little ride down the street. They want you to take a hybrid from the bike shop all the way over to the carriage roads to try it out. The back entrance to Acadia is just a few blocks from the bike shop, the carriage roads a little further. You can't say Sparky breezed up the three hills to get there, but she never got off the bike once to walk up. And it was a HECKUVA lot easier navigating those hills! The hybrid is a lot lighter than our comfort bikes. It was lots more fun to ride. There's a lot less rolling resistance on a hybrid because of the narrower width of the tire, the bigger size of the tire and a higher running tire pressure. There might be a bike in Sparky's future soon. We have to find out what kind of trade in we could get for the Navigator 3.0 which is what we have now. Sparky can be quite impulsive, but Eldo holds in the reins and makes sure Sparky will be happy with her choice. He suggested we go home and think about it, so we did!

And that's where the day went...Tomorrow, Sparky takes a Canon Photography in the Parks class, IF she can get in on a Saturday morning class. If not, there are quite a few more times and days that they are offering the class. Sparky is REALLY excited about this! It's the sixth annual Canon Photography in the Parks offering. The classes are FREE at the national parks, and they even offer to let you use SLR cameras and lenses. WOW! Can't wait!  Until later......


  1. George has a nice bike, and I have what looks like a 'Pee-Wee Herman' cruiser. He thinks I should get a lighter bike :)

  2. The bookstore building is lovely.
    Why do these manufacturers make it so darn difficult for us to fix certain things. Why would they hid it in that tiny little cubby hole?

    1. The fuse was in the fan box up in the ceiling above my head. When we pulled it out to check it, it fell out of my hand and rolled under the kitchen floor where the tile ledge sits under the cabinets. But there are lots of other things that are hard to fix anyway. I agree with you! We can't get our light bulb replaced at the kitchen sink because the fixture won't unscrew. Ever try to push a tiny halogen lightbulb with the two pins into the little socket? Geesh! And you are not supposed to get the skin oil from your fingers on the bulb, or it might not work or last as long. Phooey!

  3. Wow; free Canon workshops; I didn't think such a thing existed. Looking forward to hearing all about it.