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Tuesday, November 24, 2009



Began the process of preparing the car for paint. Scraping the old clear-coat finish off with a razorblade and sanding down to the primer. All over. Tomorrow afternoon pick up title to car at law office, then to tag office to get tag. In the morning see TarBaby. Vet closed in afternoon. It feels like I'm starting a new momentum by beginning the process to restore the car. I'll think of this an art project, preparing the canvas. TarBaby 's white blood cell count has gone back upward. Maybe an xray will be necessary to find a hidden infection.

A black lab was lying on a towel in the room TarBaby was in. Her nose was banged up, dirt on her like she'd rolled on it. I asked Julie if a car hit her. Yes, it broke her left rear leg. I carried TarBaby to the window letting him look until he saw enough. I feel like I'd like to pet some of these lonesome dogs and cats that are not well, or are on their way to and from neutering / spaying, each one its own reason for being there. But I also don't know them and am not so sure about sticking a finger between the bars to pet the dog's nose. TarBaby seems to have settled in at home there. It must be that he feels safe in his cage seeing all the dogs and other cats come and go. All kinds of dogs out there, big ones too.

TarBaby's malady continues to be an enigma. I'm glad to see he's comfortable. He doesn't give any sign of being uncomfortable. The light is back in his eyes. He's filling out. He gives the appearance of understanding why he's there and gives in willingly to treatment. He seems to know that the others in that room have illnesses and fractures of their own. He has a stillness about him, like from being cloistered in meditation. Every day I let him know I'm not abandoning him. It certainly contributes to his calm demeanor.

Driving down the Twin Oaks Mountain Freeway, the mountains the other side of the river in Virginia were all in sunlight, while this side of the river was overcast, one big cloud. It had a glorious feeling about it. They're beautiful mountains and I don't know that I've ever seen their contours displayed as they were today. The gray of leafless trees. I thought to get some pictures of it, but it didn't seem like it would translate well to a photograph. One of those panorama scenes that a photograph reduces to a few inches by a few inches. A glorified postage stamp. But it was a nice view to enjoy from the top of the mountain to the bottom.

From seeing TarBaby I went out 18 to Sparks Hill to talk with Allen about painting the car. He showed me how to prepare the present finish for painting. It had clear coat on it. Plus, the front part of it had been repainted and reclear coated. Nearly all the clear coat was gone. All of it was gone from the top and the top of the trunk. We stood in the driveway talking a couple hours on this, that and the other. It had been several years since I've seen Allen. He's mostly doing repairs now. He hadn't painted a full car in 5 years. He said people fixing up old cars like I'm doing isn't happening much any more.

He also told me the engine, a 3300, will go from now on. With 126k miles on it, he said it will go that many more. I said it doesn't burn oil. He said it won't if the oil gets changed. I enjoyed every minute of talking with Allen, and appreciated all he taught me concerning preparation for painting. It has to be sanded all over by hand. If I'd followed my heart I'd be working on car bodies. In the time of my life when I might have started that kind of work, I was such a neurotic portrait of confusion, I couldn't make a rational decision. I wanted to believe it could be done, but knew better in the back of my mind.

It was a period of my life I stumbled through, stumbled and fell, stumbled and fell. No experience living in the world of making money and having expenses. What I had to do to make money, jobs. Attempting higher education and unable to even get started. Not knowing what it was about or why. Primarily, I couldn't read with any comprehension. Reading is essential in educational situations. Anyway, it was then.
2 years sailing the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, I read every minute to myself. Right away I started reading novels of the French resistance during WW2 by existentialist philosophers, Camus, DeBeauvoir and Sartre. For a couple of years that's what I read. I can't say I started that time with much comprehension, but after 2 years of reading writing way beyond my ability to read, they pulled me along and I came out of it ready to start my education, knowing by then how much I needed it, able to read. I've never used the education to make money, but to give myself foundation.

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