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Detours off Britta Blvd


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a bright spot in an otherwise gloomy day
australia, ocean
I don't think the constant rain lately is helping any either, but I'm still unable to shake my depressed, unworthy, bitter & jealous mood, and now I'm in an emotional vicious circle because I hate myself for not being able to cheer myself up enough and move past this crap...*sigh*...enough complaining...at least I'm better than yesterday which was much better than Monday...

Anyway, here is the bright spot - the notorious lamp is now functional! I acquired this lamp out of the dumpster for the Rebuilding Together project my company worked on last April. I figured it would be cool just to house candles if nothing else, since it was brass with nice detail, and a marble or marble-effect base, but at first testing it seemed functional enough to try restoring for actual use...little did I know it would take almost a YEAR to get it working...heh!

April 2004: Out of the garbage in the Rebuilding Together dumpster in San Bruno, into the top-down Briata, and onto my back patio...

Early May 2004: But does it work? Kind of but hard to tell for sure until purchasing some parts. Only two of the side lights seemed to work with my fresh standard bulbs, but a brand-new Mogul bulb seemed to work fine in the top...

Scary wiring! Yes, kids, that is ASBESTOS tape holding the wiring together instead of wire nuts! Jeff helped with this project since I hadn't ever done an electrical project before and I wanted to learn, so he convinced me to rewire the whole thing for safety reasons, even though I was trying to conserve as much of the original antique as possible...

So here's where the story gets long & frustrating. All new wiring except the top Mogul bulb wiring and 3 brand-new chandelier sockets were purchased, since the standard socket wiring didn't seem to fit well through the posts, plus I like the smaller candle-style anyway and I could find the white sleeves for that size but not the larger size. We tried first using the original 3-way switch, but it shorted out with sparks and giving me a big shock during testing - ack! So a new 3-way switch was purchased, with all new wiring fully-tested for continuity even through the new switch, but the darn thing STILL wouldn't work, defying all logic! This is when it was put out in my garage before Halloween, hopefully to continue another day with a real continuity tester or another new switch.

So, now that I'm back into project mode lately to attempt to fill the void, I asked Jeff a couple weeks ago if we could finally continue working on the lamp on one of our catch-up Tivo evenings. He thought we must have gotten a bad switch out of the new package somehow, so we should get another new switch and try that, and eliminate ALL possible variables. He also suggested getting just a plain on/off switch too, just in case there was something weird about the 3-way wiring we had set up, then we could at least have the 3 candles go on & off as a set. I bought both switches at OSH last week, so we worked on this last night. Pulling all the wiring out of the connectors from the other switch, reconnecting them all to the new switch, testing continuity - the sockets worked in sequence properly - hooray! But I put the bulbs back in, and no luck...huh?!? The bulbs felt fully screwed in & everything, and I even got out brand-new bulbs in case the others sitting for 6 months had spontaneously gone bad...then Jeff finally got the idea that maybe the cardboard insulation tubes were just barely too high to let the bulbs contact the sockets...I took off the insulation, put the bulbs back in & voila! Mystery solved...and testing the other switch showed it was FINE THE WHOLE TIME...ah well...live & learn, eh? At least I'll get about $5 back from OSH when I return the still-working extra 3-way switch and the unused on/off switch, which will be used to purchase corn seed and tomato seedlings for my garden... :)

Here is my "new" lamp showing it's full light - quite cool that I have 6 levels of light out of this lamp, since one switch controls 1, 2 or all 3 of the chandelier bulbs, then the top switch is 3-way for the Mogul bulb. This corner of the room has been notorious even since I moved in for its dim lighting...no more!

Here is the finished lamp unlit so you can see details - new 3-way Mogul bulb in the top behind a $2 Goodwill milk glass shade, plus 3 new chandelier sockets, and all new wiring EXCEPT the original Mogul wiring...hooray!

Hope your days have bright spots today, too...

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These things take a while to get behind you, Britta. It's perfectly natural to be frustrated with your inability to be emotionally resilient. But imagine if your heart was made of bone, and it was shattered from a terrible blow. Rehabilitation will take a while.

In the meantime, you are likely surrounded by people (like me!) who have been there, completely understand, and are here to support you and endure your whining. Will you have occasion to see him or contact him again in a year or so? Because the other thing you might experience is the resurfacing of feelings that you're experiencing now. Hopefully, you won't, but it could happen. Unless of course, when you meet him, you're already attached to some [insert description of man of your dreams here], then you won't give a hoot.

The question is, has your level of preference for country music enhanced lately? Have you embraced a fondness for heartbreak songs, like "Love Hurts"(was this Nazareth who sang that one?), "Love Stinks"(Peter Wolf, I think his name was from J.Geils Band), and "I hate myself for loving you" (Joan Jett)?

Hey, any planning for the Harry Potter Party being done,yet? :D

Nah, I still can't stand most country music, but there have been a couple Kelly Clarkson and Avril Lavigne songs on the radio that I seem to relate to now...how can that be?!? ugh...*shudder* My time alone in the car on my commute is the absolute worst time for me...too much thinking time by myself without enough distraction, I guess...

I've still had email from him in the past month, since we were going to try to be friends, but he's been on a tour the past couple weeks, so who knows if he'll keep that up when he gets back...I'm trying to stay strong and wait to see if he emails me, but I so miss being friends with him, which is how it was for several months before New Years, and I was assuming it would stay that way back then and was content with that...*sigh*

As for Hogwarts planning so far, I'm still brainstorming on what new things to do or embellish without making myself too crazy. I have been doing gardening to prepare the yard in advance, and I've been planning how to plant my veggies to save room in the side yard for the "Hogsmeade Elementary School" section too...

BTW, I have decided on my costume...I'm going to be Bellatrix Black Lestrange - bwahaha! I'll be channeling my inner Helena Bonham-Carter mixed with some Angelica Huston I think...yes, the very same black cloak as in my icon will be used... ;)

Re: thanks...

Britta, the lamp is incredible. You never fail to amaze me with your creativity and use of found objects.

I know the rain isn't helping. I was so excited when I looked out the window this morning and saw blue sky. Now it's clouded over again.

I loved the analogy in weaktwos' comment. It does take time to reconcile these things in our hearts, especially when they come seemingly out of left field. No one expects you to be sunny and cheerful. We just worry about you and feel equally helpless in comforting you as you feel in your grieving. There are so many levels of grief in a breakup. The wishing the whole relationship had never happened. The loss of closeness and intimacy. Wondering if you could or should have done something differently. Self doubt and beating oneself up. And all that hope and the knowledge of what could have been. It's a lot to filter through and still be capable of functioning in the world.

~Nathania, who's feeling better today despite the leak in the bathroom wall last night, but still a little nervous about the session with Daniel tomorrow.

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