Test flew a couple of U2 hang gliders from Crestline this morning in fairly strong west winds. The previous five days have been North vs. SW convergence days with amazing flights and heights by many pilots, including me. These kinds of days get talked about for years. Today was ordinary, except for the strong wind. After the second flight I left instead of helping load the gliders because I needed to fill out the divorce papers and drop them at her place. The Summary Dissolution instructions said the form boxes had to be typed in, so I planned to go to Kinko's, who had told me by phone they had a typewriter. I stopped at the house to check work email and get the paperwork, and when I backed out of the driveway I discovered that my left rear tire was flat.

It took a few minutes to put the spare on, and I saw a bit of shiny metal in the middle of the tread of the flat. I figured I'd do the forms, drop them at her place, turn in my P.O. Box keys, and then go to Big O tires to get the tire fixed. At Kinko's the typewriter was putting out strange symbols and characters when I typed. I haven't really used a typewriter in about 20 years, so called for help. The woman was nice, but clueless about the machine, understandably. She tried turning it off and back on. I asked if it was from Microsoft, and she chuckled and said "No, it's an IBM Selectric." Then she tried to change the ribbons and the letter wheel, to no avail. The guy she called over was little better, but persistent at hitting the "code" and "Lang" keys, among others, over and over. Eventually it started producing characters that matched the keys, and he declared it fixed. This was frighteningly like my tech support methods at work.

It was hard to line the typed lines up well, but I produced a passable form in about 10 minutes. Then I went to make triplicate double-sided copies of that and some other forms, and our financial settlement agreement.

She had made up a couple of document cases a couple of years ago, containing copies of passports, certificates, the home loan, etc., that we each kept at our workplaces in case a forest fire wiped out our home (this was after a smaller fire than the Old Fire last Fall). She had asked me to return this to her, so I looked through it quickly to make copies of anything I thought I might possibly need later. I was struck by an odd coincidence when I came across her birth certificate. The word 'Middlesex' jumped off the page - it was the county of her birth (in New Jersey, listed twice) and the book I finished reading the night before last was none other than Jeffrey Eugenides' Pulitzer Prize winning novel of the same name, from a couple of years ago. The similarity goes no farther - normal equipment for both of us, that's for sure. Ahem.

So I dropped the documents at my old home, which the neighbors just bought. I spoke to them briefly, we're friends, and only had a twinge of loss as I was heading to my truck and saw all the plants around the patio in bloom. Things were mostly still dormant from Winter when I moved out a month ago. Poetic, that. When I turned in my keys at the Post Office, the clerk asked the box number and came up with my last name after a very brief pause. I was taken aback, and pleased to get reminded of that small town feeling of the mountain community. I'll live there again if I can and if it makes sense.

At the tire place, they pulled out the rusty nail and patched that hole, no questions asked. Then they found another nail and hole, and the nail had caused a rip. They said it wasn't patchable, but they'd pro-rate a replacement since there was little wear. Only they didn't have that exact tire and I'd have to come back the next day. Well, I've got to go to work, fifty miles away, the next day. I'll try the tire place near work. I've been buying my tires both places over the last six years, so that shouldn't be a problem.

My brother had his kids for the evening, and I sprang for dinner from El Pollo Loco, which I've been having a hankering for. My older nephew, soon turning twelve, was quite animated and engaged in conversation, which he hasn't been lately. My brother remarked on it several times, making cracks about his usual one syllable grunts and becoming a teenager. My nephew didn't shut down, which I thought showed so real maturity. My bro and I had a good conversation about her despicable behavior, people who don't get it vis a vis what relationships are really about, etc.

It was a varied day, and one full of progress, to say the least.