Mom and dad are in town for the next couple weeks... which is great, because that means we get to eat out a lot, and mom will probably bake pies. Oh, and it's just nice to see them, too. ;)
It also means that there are extra people around to help with various errands and tasks -- and when dad is in town, I especially like to think about anything that might need to be fixed... because I am convinced that my dad can fix anything.
Take my vacuum cleaner, for instance. I was cleaning the house a few days ago, and pulled out the vacuum cleaner to take care of the floors, but realized there was a problem -- the handle was stuck in an upright position. My vacuum is designed so that the handle is supposed to easily pivot backwards with very little effort -- but no matter how hard I tried (and I didn't try TOO hard, because I didn't want to break it), the handle wouldn't budge. It seemed to be stuck on something, but my own cursory examination of the vacuum revealed nothing out of the ordinary. Not that I'm a vacuum expert... I doubt that I would recognize anything "out of the ordinary" on my vacuum cleaner... unless it suddenly sprouted arms and legs or a raccoon jumped out of the hose...
My first thought was, "I bet dad could figure this out." It seemed like one of those puzzles that an engineer would consider a challenge -- I pictured my vacuum cleaner lying in pieces on the floor... a deconstructed project with a simple solution.
So, when mom and dad dropped by my condo yesterday afternoon, I pointed out my badly-in-need-of-a-good-vacuuming carpet and the unfortunately useless cleaner sitting in the corner. Dad immediately went to work, attempting to figure out why the handle was stuck, searching for the cause of the malady, removing various parts of the vacuum, wondering why there was a raccoon in the hose... (Okay, still no raccoon in the hose... but that would explain so much...) My mom and I were able to tear him away from the vacuum cleaner long enough to eat lunch at the deli down the street, where he did a quick search on his phone for a solution to the stuck handle problem.
By the time we got back to the condo, he was armed with information and ready to tackle the fix. Within five minutes, he'd used his Swiss Army knife to dislodge the handle... and, in lieu of WD-40 (although I offered olive oil and Pam spray), a tube of Chapstick proved a serviceable remedy to keep the mechanism sliding freely. A Swiss Army knife and Chapstick. All you need to fix a plethora of problems...
Like I said, my dad can fix anything. :)