Well… it sure had been an interesting week last week. I would like to call it a bad week, but that is actually kind of hard to do. Having been shot twice and being on the receiving end of an artillery attack, I truly know what a bad week is. And with so many people losing jobs or having hours cut, my week doesn’t even compare to their bad times. But still, it wasn’t one of my best.
Things started off with a bang last Monday. A few weeks ago when we had our first big thaw, the water wasn’t draining properly in the parking lots for one of my commercial properties. It is not unusual for the lines under the lot, or under the street that the lot empties into to freeze. However, after having them try to steam the lines open for a few hours, we ended up pumping the lot and then learning that the drain pipes has collapsed. They were the lines under the parking lot, which means my problem – not the city’s problem.
The bid to have this fixed the right way came in on Monday morning first thing… sometime this spring, as early as possible, we are going to completely re-do that parking lot and its drainage system… for just a mere $33,000 and change.
On Monday afternoon the printer in my office died. I did all that I know how to do.. went through all of the trouble shooting, used every piece of profanity I know… changed the order I used them just incase that mattered… made up a word or two.. but it was beyond what I could do. I knew I was on borrowed time… it is an HP inkjet printer that has been used for business use and is pushing 4 years old. We have 3 of them and mine by far sees the most use. I just didn’t want to buy a new printer because new printers don’t use the same ink cartridges. I like the fact that I just buy some 94’s and some 95’s and they work in all the printers. I decided I would get a new one over the weekend and until then just print through the network on the property manager’s printer.
That idea worked fine until late Tuesday morning when my system locked up while I was printing something. The problem was quickly traced to the property manager’s computer which presented me with what computer geeks know as the BSOD “Blue Screen of Death.” After multiple attempts to reboot, it was time to call in real computer people. (Insert shameless plug for Excel-Tec – those guys ROCK!)
It was a complete hard drive failure. So, they took her computer into their shop to see what files they could save (all but one, and that one really wasn’t very important at all). However, in the mean time, my property manager didn’t have a computer. We use Quickbooks Pro for our accounting and we have a copy running in my office and there is also a copy running on a computer in the front office from back in the days when we had one more person. But it had been so long since we had used that computer, it didn’t work on our network. So for the rest of the day, we were taking turns on my computer.
They got her computer back to us by Wednesday afternoon. We had moved her printer into my office and we decided to leave it there because setting her computer back up had problems of its own. When we went to reinstall Quickbooks (we are using 2005), it needed Flashplayer 7 on the computer to complete the install… they loaded Flashplayer 10, because 7 hasn’t been available.. well .. since 8. However, because it wasn’t version 7, Quickbooks refused. John from Excel-Tec was able to get the front computer working on the network. So, as of Wednesday afternoon, the property manager could use her computer for working on Word, Excel and the internet… but would have to go up into the front office to work on Quickbooks (which was often because rents were coming in and late notices needed to go out on Friday). However, all of the printing would have to be sent to her printer which was located in my office. Fun Times!
Icing on the cake was when I got home from work Friday, and checked the mail, I found a nice letter from my bank letting me know that my checking account was overdrawn… by quite a bit. Being an accountant, that is a big deal.. I pride myself on being right to the penny. So online I went and I discovered that my paycheck from 2/27 (which is set up to be automatically deposited) never made it into my account.
This week did start on much better terms. On Saturday I went to the bank. They quickly discovered that the check was deposited into someone else’s account and were able to put it in mine, and the bank fees would all be reversed. They found the problem – they fixed the problem – they apologized – and they gave me free stuff (a really nice coffee cup).
Our 10” of snow on Sunday that was going to cause me to spend much of Sunday and Monday plowing never materialized… that is a good thing.
When I went to OfficeMax to get my new printer, I noticed that the new version of Quickbooks was on sale for 50% off, saving me nearly $300. I used some of the savings to purchase a portable hard drive. I always backed up my Quickbooks data files on a regular basis to a USB flash drive, but now I can back up automatically every computer on the network. This 500 GB hard drive was ON SALE for less than a hundred bucks!
On Wednesday I was the speaker at the Central Wisconsin Apartment Association’s meeting, and I do really enjoy doing speaking engagements. And on Friday, I hit the big 4-0.
So.. here’s to a bad week gone and a better one replacing it!