Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Rarest Thing

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Brrrrrrrr, it's been cold in Florida. No fair. It may be nicknamed the Sunshine State with town names like Frostproof, but it can get below freezing. Yesterday we had torrential thunder and lightning storms.  My camping spot flooded, the mud overran my outdoor rug, covering it in yuck muck.

Last summer my dear friends in Michigan, helped me rip out the nasty 16 year old OEM (that means Original Equipment Manufacturer) carpet from my 1994 camper.  We replaced it with simple vinyl tile.

Life has been GOOD. I just sweep out the mess, then dance around with a bottle of Windex and paper towels on my feet, to mop the floors. Puppy thinks this is a new game, so I usually tether him outdoors while I do the floors.

However, as my nothern friends warned me, vinyl tile floors can get cold in the winter. When I bought my motorhome, the wall to wall carpet was ugly, dirty and way past worn out.  It was 16 years old! It had faded into various unsightly shades from either sun or cleaning chemicals. Initially, I found throw rugs in coordinating colors to hide the carpet.  These were made of tight woven commerical grade carpet with rubber backing. They were on sale at Dollar General for $6.  Four are burgandy and two are brown, colors that coordinate with my interior. I had to go to two different Dollar Generals, to assemble the colors I needed.  
I ended up with  six throw rugs, 24 inches by 40 inches, making about 20 by 2 feet of carpet, enough to do the entire aisle down the center of the motorhome. 

Now I had carpet on top of carpet, but at least the place looked 90% better. After the vinyl tile went down, I no longer needed all six rugs, all the time.  So I kept them rolled up in the basement when not in use. Sometimes I use one for the entryway and one for the shower area.  If it's cold, all six come out to carpet the RV again.

As once I unroll them all, I am fully carpeted again in all areas where the feet roam. It did substanially make a difference with the cold weather, adding a bit of insulation.  Since my new vinyl tiles are off white with hints of gray and beige, the dark carpets make it look wintry again in the RV, but I do like the added lighting from the light colored tiles, when they aren't covered by carpets. I love this new system, vinyl or carpet or both.

The beauty of these throw rugs is that:
A-They are removable, carpet is an option
B-They shake out really well for cleaning, no need for a mega carpet vaccuum and believe me, wimpy vacs, do not clean carpets anyhow, you need that heavy duty beater brush for pile carpets
C- These are washable either with a garden hose and a bit of soap, or in the regular washing machine (do not use the tumble dryer if you want to preserve the rubber backing)
D-They roll up neatly, taking up very little storage space when not in use (do not fold, you'll be sorry if you do)
E-They double as seat covers on gnarly picninc table benches, matter of fact I have 2 spares for that, they are blue, the blue ones came with the motorhome, there is nothing blue inside my motorhome, so the blue rugs clashed something awful (former owners color-challenged?)

So for a mere $36, I am able to take my carpet or leave it. Cake or the icing or both.   I feel so spoiled!

Puppy dog was thrilled when the carpets came out recently. His feet were cold. He had taken to doing what I call his cat-walk. You know how some cats hate to have their feet touch the floor, so they hop from furniture to furniture to get where they are going. Well, that is what the puppy was doing, until I laid the carpet out again. Also, it gives him a change in play area, when we toss his toys up and down the hallway at night before bedtime. When the tiles are showing, he loves to skate and slide his way along the hall, chasing his toys. With the carpet down, he gets to run and leap with traction.

Yesterday, the heavens opened up, with thunder bolts and lightning hits, that set me on edge, as torrential rains and threats of tornadoes, saturated the area. I didn't get much writing done, because I was oh-so-jumpy. I've been hit by lighting three times in my life, so I am nervous around it.  Not sure I could survive another hit. I ran around unplugging everything, I don't have any surge protectors.  The phone rang, my friend was treated to conversation punctuated by occasional screams as lightning touched down so close, my entire RV briefly went from gloom to super bright.

Eventually, the lightning  ceased, but the rains poured forth, so 
I settled on making homemade yogurt in the crockpot. I'm not sure it came out right at all, but it came out close-enough. This morning I scooped some out, stirred in 

Quaker Multi-Grain cereal, tossed in fresh blueberries, cinnamon and honey, then cooked it all in the microwave for 2-3 minutes. It was delicious. I felt like a healthy horse after eating the whole grain  Rye, Barley, Oats and Wheat. Yee haw...

"To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all." - Oscar Wilde

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