Yes. This is what only 40 PERCENT retirement looks like. I think I might have misspoken once about Hick taking 60% retirement. Silly me. The math is the first to go. Hick is working 3 days a week, at 60% pay and full insurance benefits. So he's gone to work three days a week, and here the other two, plus the weekend. He's making the most of his time here at the homestead. As you can see.
Oh, that's just the stuff I can SHOW you! Saturday morning, I stepped on something in the kitchen. I'm not sure what it was. It was in front of the stove again. Surely you don't think VAL ever spends any time in that area! I was in my fresh socks right after the shower. My fresh NEW socks, worn for the first time. And something got a grip on the toe area of the left foot. It stuck. Pert near pulled that sock off. Not all the way off. Just about halfway off. Like a kid's sock after playing in the snow for an hour, and then taking off his snow boot.
I looked at the floor and didn't see much of anything. As far as I know, Hick didn't make eggs in secret before I got up, and he didn't have a plate of leftovers from the Felinefish Skillet to turn over and drip slaw juice in the floor. He DID say he had a Subway sandwich for his supper, because he went TO WORK to load a big shelf he wants to put in the basement. You know. To display his STUFF.
No, I only saw a little speck of something. Unrecognizable. It was smaller than a dime, and grayish in color. I wiped it up with a wet paper towel. That's standard procedure around here, right? Still, my sock was bespoiled. I just stuffed my foot in a Croc and went about my business.
SKRICK SCRICK SCRICK
That's the sound of a Croc sole with something sticky on it going across a linoleum kitchen floor. (Apparently, Hick's floor-droppings take more than water and a paper towel to clean up. Who knew?) I know you've heard that sound. Like when you step in gum on a parking lot, and walk through the store. Even when I walked across the living room carpet with with my Croc, and down the basement stairs, I still got the SCRICK on the tile basement floor. That's unnatural. That sole should have been coated with mud particles from the carpet, like Oreo crumbs on a homemade donut, and remained silent.
Oh, but this is not the worst part of 40% more time with Hick! No siree, Bob! The worst part (so far) is:
OUR CYCLES HAVE SYNCHRONIZED!
That means that every time I walk toward the bathroom for my shower, Hick runs in from the front yard, where he has just parked his Gator all willy-nilly and stormed up the steps and fumbled with his key in the lock, and darts ahead of me to plop down on the toilet to take a crap. And let me tell you, people...Hick is no Thomas Jefferson sitting on a boot!
Not only do I have to inhale his business when he's done, while I am trying to get clean in the shower...but I have to listen to Hick while he's in there. I imagine that Thomas Jefferson, sitting on his boot in his waistcoat, taking a tasteful crap, remained silent. Not Hick.
"AHHH..." Like he's dining on succulent filet mignon. Like he's sipping $35 a bottle whiskey with Genius. Like he's having a relaxing massage administered by a grown-up high-tech love child from Shania Twain and Lorrie Morgan. (You can Google them. They're 80s country singers that Hick enjoyed. Very much.)
Let the record show that the last picture is NOT related to the last example of Hick's renewed household presence.
Yes, Val's idyllic life, now with 40% more Hick, has changed dramatically.