I'm alive, but my internet has a tree problem

As the leaves began to fill out this spring, my satellite connection began to degrade.

Being stubborn as a donkey, I didn't call my ISP to try to address the problem; I didn't know if it was a satellite issue or a tree issue. The connection could be down for minutes or hours, then it would come back up without warning and be unusually fast. For a while. And then it may or may not go down again.

Somewhere around a week ago it went entirely black. Rebooting the modem didn't help because often it could not establish a good enough connection to complete the boot process.

My landlord showed up to cut the grass this afternoon, just as I was preparing to roll down the river to the Cruso Community Center - where we play music on Tuesday nights - because my neighbor told me that there is free and fast, real cable, internet access. I explained the situation to my landlord and suggested that a little judicious pruning could restore my connection. He said he'd get it taken care of, and to remind him if he took more than a couple of days.

And so here I sit, down at the old schoolhouse that has been repurposed into a community center. There is a thrift store and a library, a large kitchen, and I am sitting in the old cafeteria. This is the room where we have our bi-weekly jam sessions. Retirees, a.k.a. snowbirds, spend their winters in Florida and come up here for the summer. They stay in the campground across the street and serve as our audience when we play. When I came in here today, one of the regulars asked where I was last night. "We had seats right up at the front, and nobody showed up!" Of course, he was only kidding. He knew that it was our week off.

Ah well. I am scheduled for 50 hours of work this week, since we are in transition trying to find decent replacements for the good person we recently lost and for the really lousy ones who keep rotating in and out. Last week we had a 30-year-old woman who could not count money. She constantly gave people the wrong change, and usually in the customer's favor. Not only that, she evidently had a bad case of body odor. She was told not to come back this week.

We do have a competent core of people, but poor employees make the rest of us work harder. On the bright side, all of the competent people have been getting overtime lately. A raise would be nice too.

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