As soon as I hit the “publish” button on last night’s post, the desktop blue-screened. Again. And violently. Kurt could not boot into Windows at all; he kept getting the Blue Screen of Death. There was no error in his screen, though — just the hex codes at the bottom. He called Dell, who told him that particular hex code error is….
DUM DUM DUMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!
Corruption of the hard drive.
See, Kurt had been trying to hook up my new external hard drive so I would be able to back up my photos. He had somehow hit the monitor and caused it to go into Power Save mode, and not being able to wake it back up again, he decided to shut it off with the power button. The Dell tech later told us that the computer had probably been trying to write to the hard drive when Kurt shut it off, thereby causing the corruption.
He had us run Check Disk again, and Kurt and I went to bed. At 5:30am I woke up. My initial thought was, “Damn it’s still dark out!” and then “I need to roll over.” Then the computer problems hit me like a ton of bricks. Also the moon was shining right in my eye through a slit in the mini blinds. There was no way I could go back to sleep.
I restarted the computer, but things just didn’t seem right. I tried to find the new external hard drive, but couldn’t see it at all. I finally decided to try restarting to see if that would fix the problem, but that only made it worse!! Back to Dell I went.
He ended up having me run a repair installation of Windows — not enough to overwrite my data, but enough to fix whatever issues I may have. It’s apparently working just fine now, but he kept explaining that this was just a Band-Aid fix, that I really need to reformat.
Now here’s my problem — I don’t particularly want to reformat. It’s not a big deal, now that I have all my photos, recipes, and bookmarks backed up. But I’m deathly afraid that something will go horribly, horribly wrong.
Then consider Kurt. Here’s a guy who loves to play video games, and much prefers PC games to game system games. Our computer, even though it’s only two years old, is really out of date already for someone who wants to play games. He bought a game just a few months ago with the intentions of playing it on the laptop, but the laptop can’t handle it. He took it into the office just to see if by some weird chance the desktop could run it, and it could… just barely. But he had to shut every other program off before he started his game. Even then, he still had a problem with flickering because our video card could barely keep up.
I’m thinking maybe we should just bite the bullet and get him a system more in tune with gaming. It doesn’t have to be hugely expensive, but with some extra RAM and a good video card, he should be able to stay up-to-date more easily and for a longer time. Games just have gone far-and-away above what our system can handle.
So that’s that. A slightly borked but (cross your fingers) functioning desktop. Let’s hope it continues to work, at least till I can come to a decision about reformatting or buying a new system.
Kurt has been really great about this whole thing. He was a bit grumpy when I woke him up this morning, but only because it was 5:30am, and he had an hour more sleep coming to him!! Poor guy.
I asked him when he left for work if he could come home between morning muster and his first class that he had to teach. I just wanted him to be with me while I fixed everything, and also so that I could snatch some sleep if there was enough downtime. What he ended up doing was even better — he switched his schedule around so that his class was the first class of the day, and he took the rest of the day off. Not only that, but he refused to let me stew in my own juices here in the house. As soon as he got home and we realized that the desktop was pretty much as good as it was going to get, he told me to put my shoes on — we’re going out!
He took me thrift-store shopping!! We started in Newport in this thrift store on Broadway. It was such a weird little store, with all these little rooms leading one into the next. I got a few books there, and also a Polaroid camera. I know, I know — Polaroid is sort of useless in this age of digital cameras, but I was inspired by one of my Flickr friends. She had gotten one at a thrift store, and the photos she was taking were so nostalgic for me that I just had to try it out for myself.
Right next door was a used bookstore, where I picked up Eight Cousins as well as Under the Lilacs, both by Louisa May Alcott. These copies had been bought for a young girl by her parents and presented to her in 1887! I love old books. I don’t know why; I just do! I love Eight Cousins too. I had found a copy of it at my grandma’s house one year and devoured it in the short time we were visiting. Even now I can envision the edition she had, and even some of the illustrations. It reminds me of my grandma’s house, and the wonderful visits we made when I was a kid.
Then we headed to Massachusetts to find a couple more thrift stores. We picked up the genus edition of Trivial Pursuit, the first version, for a mere $2, along with the 20th anniversary edition for $3! I also found two Care Bears books for Grace, both from the 1980s. One was The Trouble With Timothy, printed in 1983. I remember having this book! I’m so excited that Grace will have it too.
Which basically means that a day that started out so poorly turned out pretty darn well. You can’t ask for much more than that!