Archive for the House Category

Quick Car Updates: Cheesecake Day, TL-S Visitor, RL Shots, & Red Velvet

Posted in Del Sol, House, Integra, Legend, SLX on August 7, 2019 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Integra Sedan):  73,323

I guess pretty much every day is a “food holiday” of some sort.  I found this list online which claims to be the “complete list” of holidays, including 13 holidays for the month of August alone.  This coming Saturday, August 10 is National S’mores Day, so get your marshmallows and Hershey chocolate bars ready for the occasion.  That’s definitely one worth celebrating.

I bring this up because July 30th was Cheesecake Day, and my favorite kind of cheesecake is key lime from the Cheesecake Factory.  My 1993 del Sol has a license plate that reads “KEYLIME,” so you can guess where this story is going.  I pulled the ‘Sol out of its slumber and headed over to the Biltmore Mall for some salmon for dinner and a slice of key lime cheesecake for dessert.

Notice, I even whipped out the green HONDA factory associate hat for the occasion. That hat was given to me as a souvenir during my April 2012 visit to the Greensburg, Indiana Honda manufacturing facility for the “line-off” event of the 2013 Acura ILX.  The hat is actually designed to have a hardhat inside it.  Clever wardrobe.

It’s been a busy few weeks at the house, with Ira’s recent visit and then a drop-in from my friend Naveed who has a 2008 Acura TL Type-S.  He was passing through town from Los Angeles to Dallas and spent the night.

Naveed’s car is a super-sweet example with automatic transmission and < 50,000 miles on the odometer – a one-owner car out of Carlsbad, California with immaculate service history and cosmetic condition.

It makes my day that other people geek out about old cars as much as I do.

Interior looked brand new for being 11 years old.

The RL got a few glamour shots that I’ll soon be sharing on Instagram.  The car is my preferred people-hauler, above everything else in the fleet.  It’s just such a smooth ride.  The only issue I need to sort out right now is an intermittent stalling that has happened twice.

I looked into it and it appears there may be a ‘known’ problematic area with the APP Sensor, which stands for Accelerator Pedal Position.  The part runs a couple hundred bucks but it basically tells the engine where the throttle is.  In both cases where the car has died, it was when I was off the throttle, either decelerating or coasting around a corner.  I’ll get it all sorted in due time.

The SLX is coming out soon with its 5th video episode in a YouTube series I’ve been putting together.  Of all my recent uploads, those been getting some of the most traffic / views.  It’s also been fun how many people I’ve “met” through it.  This week, I got an email from a nice gal named Roxana in North Carolina who uses her SLX to tow people out at the beach.  If you don’t believe me, check out her videos.

I’ve pretty much put a pause on spending any more effort or money on the SLX for the short term.  I’m running a Prolong engine oil treatment right now, as well as some fuel system treatment.  But it’s been rock solid.  The best news of the week:  I discovered that the cassette tape player works, so I can rock out to all my favorite 1990s jams in style.

With this summer heat in Phoenix reaching 115 degrees consistently, I was curious how hot my 2 garages (which aren’t climate controlled) get.  The smaller garage on the west side of my property is a single car space with no insulation.  It reached 121 degrees this week.

The other, larger, garage which is on the east side and has insulation, hit 101 degrees – a full 20 degrees cooler.  Still warm though.

The Legend sedan was picked up today for transport to Monterey, California.  It’s headed to the 2nd annual Japanese Automotive Invitational at Pebble Beach.  Here’s my article from when the Integra GS-R went there last year.

And speaking of the Integra – you might get a kick out of this.  I found out that Amazon sells red velvet ropes and stanchion posts for crowd control.  What better way to create the occasional VIP-exclusive area inside my garage (or inside the house, at a party).  This is 100% a joke, but I thought it would make for a fun conversation piece from time to time.

My neighbor Gabe is trying to sell a 1982 Corvette (auto).  He and his wife came over to chat the other day while we were irrigating our lawns.  This one belonged to Gabe’s brother.  It’s been parked / covered since 2008, when the tags last expired.  Does anybody want it?  Hit me up.  I have more pics, the VIN, and can snag a video or any other details.  Odo reads 26,000 miles, which is probably 126,000.

The only other update I can share is the the ILX needed its first alternator replacement.  I had just arrived at the grocery store a couple of weeks ago and got a “CHECK CHARGING SYSTEM” message, literally as the car rolled 216,000 miles.  I made it to my Hon-Man mechanic who got me into a new Denso starter for about $490 parts & labor a couple of days later.

Have a great rest of the week!  I’m off to explore some new turf soon, but I’ll save the details for next time.

Nerdy Burger Destination: Group Drive to Globe, Arizona & More Home Improvements

Posted in Arizona, House, NSX, Road Trip on May 27, 2019 by tysonhugie

Odometer (NSX):  115,761

Trip Distance:  180 Miles

Talk about a one-stop-shop:  At Nurdberger in Globe, Arizona, you can get your hands on burgers, coffee, sweets, and… nerds?

You read that right.  This uniquely-themed hamburger joint prides itself in being nerdy.  Its main lobby has arcade games, and the walls are covered in posters of comic book characters.  Most importantly, the menu is nicely put together and I went with a “Power Nurd” 1/4 pound burger (or, berger) along with a side of onion rings with a diameter the size of pancakes.

Globe is a small mining town about an hour and half east of Phoenix that has about 7,000 residents.  When my friend Kyle pitched the question about taking a weekend group drive, we had no problem rounding up 11 people in 8 different (and I do mean, very diverse) vehicles to spend the day on the road for a burger.  Comprising the list of participating vehicles were:

  • Acura NSX x 2
  • Acura TSX
  • Ford Mustang Saleen
  • Hyundai Elantra
  • Pontiac G8 GXP
  • Porsche Cayman
  • Toyota FJ Cruiser

The initial 35 or 40 minutes were on largely flat, straight terrain, but after we crossed through Superior and made our way upward through the Queen Creek Tunnel on US-60, things got a lot more interesting.  It was here that I got to have some fun with the NSX.

At the same time, I enjoyed some of my recently downloaded road trip music from Tropical House Records (thanks, Conor!).  It was therapeutic.  This song was one of my faves.  Picture me blasting that at max volume while rowing gears through the Superstition Mountains.

And I must say, Donald’s FJ, despite being unlike some of the other contenders, held its own in the twisties.  Unfortunately, though, he said he burned through 7/8ths of a tank of gas on this trip.  It’s okay – the burger and the experience were worth it.

Greg brought out his rare 1989 fox-body Mustang “SSC” — one of only 160 vehicles built by Saleen that year, and with only 13,000 miles on it.  Speaking of rarity, Kyle’s immaculate 2009 G8 GXP 6-speed manual is a rarity in itself and put us all to shame with its impeccable tire shine.  James’ Elantra Sport rolled 3,000 miles along the way.  Everyone seemed to have a good time.

As someone who is 100% nerd, I can appreciate the allure of a place like Nurdberger and I was glad for an excuse to get some time on the open road and spend it with great people.  Below are some photos and videos of the day’s excursion.

Pre-departure at Kyle’s

Woody and Jack in the 2004 TSX

NSX passing NSX

Woody and James

Following the TSX through Superior

Check out that Saleen!

Shots from Nurdberger

Headed back home

Just call me Al Borland.  I’ve been busy upgrading my home with a few things in recent months, including a new garage floor and some driveway pavers.  The latest addition to the property is an awning in the backyard that gives me 2 additional covered spots.

Before:

During:

After:

Nice to have some shade back there now!

Also got a cool new banner from a friend!

Hope the holiday weekend is going well for everyone.

Mike’s Integra, Memory Lane Pics, Steve’s Visit, & a Driveway Upgrade

Posted in Arizona, House, Model Cars, Road Trip, SLX on May 23, 2019 by tysonhugie

Odometer (SLX):  178,689

We’ll call this post “automotive potpourri,” like the recent feature on my friend Tim’s blog.

Let’s kick things off with a for-sale listing, just because I’m all about helping a nice old car find a good home.  My friend Mike in Connecticut is selling his 1991 Integra RS Automatic with only 108,000 miles on it.

It needs some cosmetic work as there is rust on the right rear quarter panel and in a few other places.  But mechanically, the car is well sorted out.  In the past year, Mike has addressed the following:  Oil change, transmission service, springs, rear shocks (fronts were done a couple years ago), power steering pump & rack, timing belt/water pump, and the exhaust between the manifold and muffler. All of the above were done at an Acura dealership.  Mike’s not looking to get a ton of money for this so he’s open to offers.

The RS is a bare-bones model with manual-crank windows – probably my favorite thing about it.

There is also no moonroof.

Cloth seats are showing some wear.

Get in touch with Mike at mike.russo.66@gmail.com if this is something you’re interested in.  I wish I had room for it!

On Sunday afternoon, I met up with my friend Mirel who recently had some paint work completed on his 133,000-mile 1994 Legend LS coupe.

Mirel might be taking this one to NALM in Florida in October.

I also happened to be going through some old photos and came across a couple of gems.  This one shows me on my 18th birthday in my bedroom, which had been toilet-papered by friends.  A couple of things stood out to me:  The “Justification for Higher Education” poster, as well as the BMW 3-series convertible die-cast model car that I still have 19, years later.

This was from around 1999 in my 1989 Prelude Si, with my brother in the passenger seat.  It was taken in Logan Canyon in northern Utah, crossing a bridge.  I do miss that car a lot!

I finally got around to purchasing the 2015 CD album “Ludaversal” by Ludacris, which features his Cashmere Silver Metallic Legend on the album artwork.

It’s in my showcase now.

I received some “Precision” magazines which are Acura’s new publication that’s only distributed to dealers.  And me.  I have a special hookup!

I was going through odometer pics to prepare for my 567,890 which is coming up soon.

I had company from my friend Steve from Missouri who I’ve known for about 13 years now.  We initially met at NALM 2006 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  We took the SLX out to one of my favorite dinner spots called Hula’s Modern Tiki.

We also cruised around a bit in the NSX.

I took the Legend GS to work this week.

And drove the GS-R to a friend’s birthday party.

My friend Jason of Pawela’s Garage put together a window sticker replica for the SLX, complete with $35k pricetag.

Thanks Jason!

And finally, I had some work done at the house by having a contractor add some pavers to the front driveway to even it out, for ease of entry.  Check out the video and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

Before & After:

Whew, I think that’s it for this week.  Have a nice holiday weekend, everyone!

At Last, a Showroom Floor: Metallic Epoxy Coating in the Garage

Posted in House on December 30, 2018 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend):  564.765

It’s that time of year once again where I give a summary of annual mileage.  Check out the chart below for highlights from 2018.  The car that I drove the most – the 2013 ILX – also cost the least to maintain at around 2 cents per mile.  But what’s interesting was how cheap my highest mileage car – the 1994 Legend coupe – also was to maintain, costing me only $311 to drive over 7,000 miles this year.

The NSX had an expensive year, but that didn’t necessarily translate into a pocketbook impact for me.  One of the service advisors at my local dealership covered a timing belt & water pump for free, in trade for some help I gave him selling a vehicle.  So in the end, of the $4,000 or so shown there, I was only out of pocket maybe half that.   Enjoy geeking out on some data with me!

My coworkers got crafty with Photoshop for my 37th birthday.

In the nearly 2.5 years I’ve owned my current home, I’ve always wanted to dress up the showroom.  Simple concrete is so drab, plus when you’re parking a fleet of 2+ decade old cars, you accept the fact that they’re all going to leak a little.  And my floor was starting to look like polka dot street art with the drips all over the place.  As you can see in this before & after photo, I’ve elevated the look of the garage in a big way.

To get this all done, I engaged the efforts of Eric and his team at Brilliant Epoxy Floors, Inc, based in Scottsdale, Arizona.  They completely transformed the look of my 988-square-foot, 6-car garage by fulfilling a 3-step process:  Base coat, metallic “Quicksilver” epoxy, and top polyurethane.  The sequence took about 5 or 6 days to complete because we had to wait (and weather is cooler than usual this time of year) for the surface to cure / dry in between stages.

Then I waited another 6 days before attempting to drive cars across it.  Meanwhile, my backyard was full of cars and starting to look a little bit hillbilly with cars parked every which way.  In all, the cars spent 12 days outside getting leaves & bird droppings all over them.

Yesterday was the big debut when I was finally able to park indoors.  I am thrilled with the results!  A couple of observations I’ve already made:  The new floor does show dust and dirt pretty readily – from footprints, tire treads, etc.  It’ll be extremely slick to walk on if it gets wet.  But, spills and leaks (oil or anything else) will wipe up really easily.  Let’s see how everything holds up over the next few years!

Here is a timelapse video showing stages 1 & 2 of the refinishing process.  In all, I captured about 1,000 pictures at a 20-second interval with a small camera mounted in the southwest corner of the garage.

NSX & Integra “before”

Blank slate ready for customization:

The Brilliant crew showing up for day 1

End of first / base / single-color coat

Coincidentally, while the Integra sedan was out back, I received an order for a 1:43 scale model car in the mail – a twin to it!

Day 2 complete!  You can see the metallic swirl starting to take shape here.

Meanwhile, the cars sat out back like this for almost two weeks.

Complete!

Even the “new car” went inside for a bit.  Now you know what it is.

Few more shots of the garage, all staged & ready.

Thanks for reading & watching!

Extreme Garage Makeover: My 1990’s Acura Showroom

Posted in House, ILX, Integra, Legend, NSX, Vigor on October 12, 2016 by tysonhugie

Descending order!

Odometer (Legend Coupe):  548,712

548712

Odometer (Integra):  237,380

237380

Odometer (ILX):  183,721

183721

Odometer (Legend Sedan):  150,668

150668

Odometer (Vigor):  106,293

106293

Odometer (NSX):  106,150

106150

Total Miles:  1,332,924.  1.3 million miles!

Time-travel back with me about a quarter-century to those glorious early 1990s.  I was only about 10 but I still remember them fondly.  You turn on your FM radio and it’s Ace of Base “The Sign.”  Pulp Fiction, Forrest Gump, and Toy Story are big hits at the box office.  And if you stroll down to your local Acura dealership, you might see vehicles like this:

pano

final

integra

The Acura brand, at the time only about 5 years old, was having a heyday.  The NSX debuted as a world-class supercar with uncanny reliability.  The second-generation Legend was selling like crazy – some 65,000 units in the 1991 model year alone.  The Vigor was a brand new model with the touring comfort of its larger Legend sibling but with nimble handling.  And the Integra GS-R boasted a 1.7 liter VTEC motor with more horsepower-per-liter than any other motor in the world.  Life was good.

Oh, and all those cars in the picture?  They’re stick shifts.  Did you know that there is no new Acura sold today that has a clutch pedal?  That in itself is one more reason why I hang onto the past like this.

1991_dealership

Last weekend, I called upon the expert services of the most efficient, hard-working construction crew I’ve ever known:  My family.  Between my dad and my brother, there is no home or car repair task that can’t be completed (in record time).  When I bought my new Phoenix home in late August, the main selling factor was the fact that it had two garages.

For the last 5 years, I’d been renting storage units in different parts of town to accommodate all of my vehicles, so when the opportunity arose to pick up a home that could fit them all, I worked quickly and made it happen.  (For reference, back in March at an NSX meet I had been lusting after a local club member’s place which similarly had gargantuan parking possibilities).

There was still just one hurdle:  The largest garage was split into two separate 2-car units with a garage door at each end.  This was fine for the previous owner, Charlie, who used half the garage for his woodworking & welding, and the other half for his two vehicles.  But I had other plans for the space:  I wanted to knock out the separating wall and create one gigantic Acura automotive storage mecca.  And that I did!  Or rather, my dad, brother, and stepmom did.

prep

Here’s a look at the progression taken from the south entrance in just 4 photos.

1 – Prior owner’s stuff:

before4

2 – Space cleared out, wall still there:

before2

3 – Wall removed, finish work underway:

ready

4 – Garage completed, vehicles staged:

garage_after

The Friday morning after a 12-hour drive from northern Utah, my garage makeover crew set to work on the task ahead.  Due to limited time-off at my new job, I had to go into the office.  After settling in to check emails, I decided to walk across the street to Starbucks.  At 7:32 a.m., my brother sent me 2 photos.  He and dad had already torn down the wall!  There were dangling wires and a few boards, but I couldn’t believe how much larger the space looked.  It made my day.

wires

Friday afternoon I joined the work crew and assisted with masking and taping off so that my dad could spray the paint on (a much more efficient way to tackle a large surface area than using rollers).  The garage turned into a cloud of misty white air as dad applied two coats.  Smartly we shut the garage doors so that the cars in the backyard didn’t end up with overspray.

paint_prep

We installed 3 matching ceiling fans and hung up two banks of cabinets in the southeast corner for my detailing supplies and tools.  The final step was general clean-up and the hanging of a few banners and signs.  Dad sprayed the garage out with the hose to get rid of the dust and debris, and then we did a quick wipe-down of each of the 5 cars that would be going into the showroom.  Even my 4-year-old nephew Beckam gave us a hand for that chore.

beckam

I’d had months to think about how best to position the vehicles within the space, and I wanted to keep things symmetrical.  We ended up putting the two sedans at the north end, the two coupes at the south end, and the NSX centered in the middle at a 45-degree angle.  I even finally had a use for the aluminum display stand that my other brother, Payton, had built for me earlier this year.

nsx

I couldn’t be happier with the results.  When the 7 fluorescent light tubes kick on and gleam against our bright white ceiling & wall paint, it’s shocking.  Next on the list (but a ways down the road) will be a floor coating, which means I really ought to get some leaks addressed on the cars before I do that.  The Vigor is dropping oil, and the Legend coupe leaves a trail of power steering fluid virtually everywhere it goes.

My family members and I finished out the weekend by planting a couple of citrus trees in my backyard.  For 10 years I’ve been living in Arizona and my dad has been wanting to harvest oranges and grapefruits, so we are finally making it happen.  Below are the rest of the pics!

 

Edit 10/15/16:  Just confirmed for kicks that I can get 6 cars in the main garage pretty comfortably.  Sweet.

1

2

3

trees

Taking a look at the plans

plans

Before – south garage (prior owner)

before3

Before – north garage (prior owner)

before

Before wall removal – north garage

before1

Cars parked in the backyard awaiting their new home

cars_outside

Wall coming down

garage

Dad working on wall removal

wall

Getting ready for paint

dad

Visit from friends Kyle and Matt

hangin

Out on the town with my brother Bentley, Lance, and Rob

friends

Cars got rained on while they were ALL outside!

rainy

Nephew Beckam gives us a hand with weed removal

front_yard

Cars parked in the back – with Beckam’s Power Wheels pickup

backyard_cars

Taking a break

relaxing

Getting closer!

me

Posters ready to go

signs

Family dinner at Switch Restaurant on Central Ave

switch

Final spray down of the floor

sprayed_out

Posters getting put up

hanging_pics

Vigor wash

washing_vigor

Legend sedan wash

washing_gs

Tucked away

three

Dad and Beckam with the finished product

dad2

sides2

sedans2

sedans

sides1

Artwork is ready to install, like this framed Legend coupe poster:

art

New NSX interior!  I don’t think I’d shown this yet.  Fresh leather.

nsx_interior

And a bath for the ILX so it doesn’t feel forgotten in its separate garage.

ilx_washed

First Week of Work; Another Honda Purchase

Posted in House, Legend, Road Trip on September 11, 2016 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend):  544,647

544647

Odometer (ILX):  181,139

181139

Owning a 544,000 mile car is not without its share of drama!  I just got the Legend back on Friday from receiving a replacement starter under warranty from Hon-Man in Tempe, Arizona.  The old one was an aftermarket unit installed in December 2015 that had intermittent issues.  A couple of weeks ago, I had to push-start the car (alone!) in a Great Clips parking lot in Fountain Hills after getting a haircut.  That was embarrassing.  Luckily, Hon-Man took great care of me.  I also had the car’s oil changed yesterday.

We are good to go!  On Tuesday evening, we (as in me + you, my readers) will depart on a 3,800 mile round-trip drive to Georgia and back.

phoenix_to_oakwood

The car received a backyard bath yesterday evening, though I know it’ll get plenty dirty on its cross-country journey across 6 states in the coming days.  I’ll depart Tuesday after work and do my best to post nightly updates like the ones I gave when Jason and I took our Alaska trip earlier this year.

coupe_wash

I still have the training wheels on, but I made it through my first week (well, first 4 days) of work at my new job with Banner Health.  Luckily for me, I have a sidekick (Amanda) who started the same day as I did so I don’t have to feel like the only new kid on the block.  Tuesday was filled with a half-day or orientation followed by an introduction to our teammembers.  The Banner “Corporate Center” at Phoenix Plaza is comprised by two 21-story identical towers at the northeast corner of Central Avenue and Thomas Avenue.  My team sits on the 4th floor of the south tower.

banner_ig

As with any large organization, we had our share of hoops to go through this week to get up to speed.  Still, I have no work-issued laptop computer and I’m using a “loaner.”  And it took us until day 3 to get ahold of our parking passes and elevator badges.  In all, I’m toting around 6 different badges on my lanyard.  I’d better not lose it!

Access granted:

badges

The team has been most welcoming and I’m starting to wrap my head around the new language and tasks.  My role operates in the Medicare & Medicaid realm which means I need to get acquainted with all the laws, regulations, and rules that govern those programs.  It’s been a crash course in learning acronyms!  EHR, CPOE, MIPS, MACRA, CQM, CAH… these all mean something and sooner than later, I’m going to need to be familiar with the dialect!

cube

One interesting thing about commuting to my new office:  If I want to, I can use the “Suicide Lanes.”  These are on 7th Avenue and 7th Street in central Phoenix, which run north-south.  It’s basically a turning lane that becomes a through-travel lane during certain hours of the day to ease traffic congestion at rush hour.  It changes direction based on time of day:  From 6-9 a.m. on weekdays, the the suicide lanes run southbound.  From 4-6 p.m., they run northbound.  And at any other time of the day – and all throughout the weekend – they’re used as turning lanes.

lane_instructions

The VW Jetta in this picture was using a suicide lane during my morning commute the other day.  Notice how the double-yellow lines are “broken” (not solid).  The suicide name – as you can imagine – comes from the fact that it’s possible to meet a clueless motorist head-on who doesn’t understand how the lanes’ directions are managed.

suicide_lanes

The last bit of this week’s fun comes from another Honda purchase (as if I needed another!).  This one is rear-wheel-drive, with a twin-blade design.  It’s a self-propelled, variable-speed, 21-inch Honda lawnmower that I snagged from The Home Depot yesterday afternoon.  I didn’t get a key-handoff photo (if there had been a key, I would have ) but it was love at first sight when I saw the box being brought out.  The slogan on the box read “Very Smart.”  Go Honda.

mower_box

Assembly was a piece of cake – extend the handle, add oil, adjust cutting height, and fire it up.  The owner’s manual said that the mower had been started from the factory so I assumed there might be a little gas in the tank.  There wasn’t.  Luckily I had some fuel in the garage so I filled it up and let her rip.  Cutting time was about an hour to cover both the front and back yards.  I even got fancy and striped the front lawn diagonally.

yard_after

Kyle and Dan stopped by to give their approval of my latest purchase.

lawn_mower_smart

Video of the first start-up.

Hope everyone else had a great week!  Here are the rest of my pics.

I was greeted with a welcoming gift and this sign in my cube:  The cow comes from “MU,” or “Meaningful Use,” which is the department in which I’m working.

mu_welcome

Doing some heavy-duty training on Day 2 at work.

training

The new lawnmower had my name on it.  Literally.

hugie_sticker

“Legendary” performance.  This thing is perfect for me!

legendary_performance

Finished product.  I love the backyard.  My swing is still broken, as shown here.

backyard

Lastly:  My friends Scott and Sandy were featured this week on Petrolicious!  Check out the video segment on their story, including awesome visuals of their 1959 Mercury Park Lane and their 1992 Acura NSX.

petro

Getting Settled at the New House; Career Changes Underway

Posted in House on September 5, 2016 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend):  544,575

544575

Odometer (ILX):  181,009

181009

I’m a week into ownership of my new home and it’s feeling like a great place to be!  Along with getting my bearings in the neighborhood and getting a few things unpacked, I’ve added 18 entries to my guest book.  There’s just one thing that’s become a bit of a nuisance:  I’m in such a centrally located area of town that my friends are always passing by, and they’ve taken it upon themselves to say hello each time they do.  Take Jack, for instance.  Each morning he drives down my street and gives me a hefty series of honks.  The neighborhood may never be the same!

I actually love the visitors and I feel more connected to my friend network than ever.  Travels have taken a backseat for now, but I’ll get my fill of the open road next week when I head out on a 3,600 mile round-trip drive to Atlanta for NALM.  It’s been nice to have a chance to stick in town.  Best of all, I had some special visitors here to help me break in the new pad.  Like Grandma, who came down with my mom for the Labor Day holiday weekend.

doce_tyson

There are also some changes in the works for me career-wise.  After nearly 8 years with CVS Health, I had my last day with the company on Thursday.  My departure was quiet and uneventful – just the way I’d wanted it – but I will definitely miss many of the great folks who I’d worked with there.

Out with the old:

tyson_at_cvs

In with the new:

banner_office

The next chapter in my career path will take me to the corporate office of Banner Health, a health system based in the Phoenix area that operates 23 hospitals.  I’ll be one of about 40,000 colleagues working for the company (making it the largest employer in the state, with Walmart a close second).  My role is in the “Meaningful Use” department at the corporate office.  It’s a 3.5-mile one-way commute.  Breeze!  You know I’m obsessed with timelines and tracking.  Here’s how this one played out:

  • July 18:  Online application completed
  • July 21:  Contacted by recruiter via email
  • July 25:  Phone interview with recruiter
  • July 29:  Received follow-up email from recruiter
  • August 2:  Phone interview with hiring manager
  • August 10:  On-site, 1-hour, 4-person panel interview
  • August 11:  Offer extended
  • August 15:  Offer accepted
  • September 1:  Last day with CVS
  • September 6:  Start date with Banner

I’ll let the photos tell the story about my last week or so.

Here’s a photo of my home while being irrigated.  It’s a little unnerving to see the water level like this but it’s all by design and the yard is specifically “dished” to hold the water in.  Flooding takes place once every two weeks.

flood

View looking south to the backyard from the rear-facing garage door.

backyard

My new license plate came for the Integra this week!

integra

CVS main office.

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And my new office.  I’ll be on the 9th floor here, I think.

new_office

Just for kicks, I pulled 4 of the cars into the backyard for a photo.

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The new neighbors will soon learn I’m nuts, just like my old ones did!

lineup

Arrival of grandma and mom from St. George, Utah on Friday afternoon.

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Dinner group out on the town that evening with a few friends.

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Car wash party at Kyle’s on Saturday morning, with Kyle’s pup “Cowboy” supervising.

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I gave mom’s 2004 G35 a bath.  It only has 27,000 miles on it.

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Lance and grandma playing Boggle before our BBQ.

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Dinner group.

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Following is a short video about a very special Honda fan.  Helen Musselman has now been featured in the Honda “Kokoro” series of videos for her role as the founder and operator of a Tucson-based motorcycle dealership that has been around since Honda’s earliest days.  Thanks to my friend Charles Schnieber for sharing it with me.

Have a great week!