Friday the 13th

Not that we're superstitious, but it was one of those days. We'd spent most of it shopping in Almería and Vícar (60 -70 km from home), and after a late midday meal (about 4 p.m.),  home with our load of groceries etc. found that the gate to our condo wouldn't open. We and our neighbors couldn't get our cars in, and one that was already in couldn't get out. Big problem, especially because the August 15 weekend is the biggest vacation period in Spain so the condo is full and we're expecting guests tomorrow. And try to get a repairman specialist late Friday afternoon in August in Andalucía.

We parked just outside the gate and unloaded the car and carried everything in and Susana decided to start the dryer, but when she pushed the button it plunged deep into the machine instead of popping back. When I tried to spring it loose, it fell completely inside. Now we needed not just a gate repairman by a dryer technician. And it was by then even later on Friday.

Fortunately we know a super handyman, a McGyver who is a brilliant improviser. He came right over, and after considerable study of the problem including nearly total disassembly, found a way for us to operate the gate manually, using the remote control just to unlock it. That'll get us through this weekend. He was also able to improvise a very ingenious solution to get our dryer running again. It involved a paperclip, pliers, tape and a lot of care.

But as I then drove our little Smart through the gate and up the ramp, something exploded and we heard gas escaping. Nothing vital, it turns out, but a big scare and maybe some future discomfort; it was, our McGyver thinks, a puncture in a tube of the air conditioning. Since it has reached 38º here lately (that's over 100º F), this may be a problem.