Thursday, February 25
Thurs. Feb 25th... Three More Days Until March... It's In Like A Lion Alright!!!
Well......It's the third day without internet service and just yesterday we got our electricity restored. It went out the night before last, so all morning long I functioned as the folks from the earliest part of the nineteen hundreds did.
I got up just after daylight, so I wouldn't have to use oil lights and I let the dogs out. It was of little consequence to them that the power was off. To them, it's simply, "let me out......Let me in......What, no treat??? Ok then...I'm going back to bed!!!!!!"
It was much more intricate for me! I started by heating water in the tea kettle for coffee. Thank God I recently went to instant coffee to limit my intake...You know..."Make a pot...Drink a pot." Now I make by the cup and have found that my consumption of coffee has gone from 20 cups, way down to 2 or maybe three a day. Anyway...I fired up the gas range and heated my water. Inadvertently, I dropped four slices of bread into the toaster and merrily closed the bread bag and pushed down on the toaster levers. Hummmmmmmm...... Stupid...I thought.
I immediately fooled myself by yanking Vick's griddle out of the drawer and placed it atop the second burner and lit it, throwing the bread onto the griddle to await their toasting. Yeah...See? I'm no dummy, dummy!
Well... after drinking the coffee and enjoying my toast, I bundled up and ventured out into the driving storm. I immediately noticed that since the snow depth reached above my knee...that I would probably have snow in my boots by the time I reached the shed where the snow blower is housed. Upon reaching the building, I checked my boots, which are great. Muck boots fit so tight that snow cannot enter the top. COOL! Anyway, I primed the engine and pulled the cord and off we went into snow blowing heaven with a snow blower which is equipped with heated handles and a canopy to keep the blowing snow off you face and from going down the back of your neck. (Sweet Vicki REALLY loves me, because she bought this canopy last fall to keep me warm and dry....She's so special!)
Anyway, I immediately saw I was going to be one tired puppy until the snow was cleared, because it was so damp and dense that the snow blower wanted to ramp up over it, rather than cut through it. I decided the Cub Cadet was the answer. Bucket the snow off the driveway. I went to the tractor and jumped on to get a grunt from the starter, then a rapid, click, click, click. Aw MAN, A dead battery!
Soooo, off I go to start the snow blower again.... and I blow a track all the way to the barn...a good two hundred yards anyway...and I let the chickens out, feed the alpacas and check the bunnies. After all that, I grab the battery charger and head back to the tractor shed, open the hood and hook the clips of the charger to the correct battery terminals and then lift the cover on the receptacle before calling myself STUPID again for the second time today. NO ELECTRICITY! Remember? Well... Now we're cooking...I'll snow blow a path to bring the car over and jump start the tractor using the cars battery. Brilliant!!!!
Again I start the snow blower and begin cutting a wide path for the car. After one pass to the tractor shed, the snow blower runs out of gas! What's worse, the gas can in the shed is empty! Ooooookay.....Stupid #3 coming right up!
I must admit, at this point I felt a bit defeated and went into the house to enjoy another coffee and think.
Hummmmm. No gas...can't get out of the driveway with the car to get any....dead battery on the machine with a full tank of fuel and also has a full can of diesel in the shed....Hummm, caught with the old pants down. Well...there's no recourse, I have to force the car through the two feet of snow, with only one set of wheels enjoying the single cleared 30" path made by the snow blower. Ah...haaa, I was off. I plowed the car, chewing and churning through the snow, right up to the tractor shed, just close enough to hook up the jumper cables, before becoming stuck. Did I mention that NOTHING was going my way yet today? DID I?????
I got out and waded through the snow and got the jumper cables that were where they were supposed to be for once, and waded to the tractor and hooked the cables between batteries. I then tried to start the tractor. NOTHING...
Ok, I thought. I'll dig the car out and when I'm ready to move the car, maybe the battery will be charged enough to jump start it. So I shoveled for about fifteen minutes, finding the cars tires were actually two inched off the ground on packed snow, which was as slippery as a tax collector in a room full of big business men.
When I was sure the car would drop onto bare, solid ground as soon as I moved it at all, I went to the tractor and tried to start it.
VAROOM...it started right up. I removed the jumpers, closed the hood on both machines and put the cables away, leaving the tractor happily idling away. I them got into the car and attempted to back it up. It started to move and then stopped, acting like the motor was full of snow or something... perhaps wanting to stall. Pushing on the accelerator did nothing. This happened repeatedly over, and over. What the...... Then I noticed the little "tires slipping" light on the dash. When you break traction in this smart, (stupid) car, it shuts the accelerator down! Good, I suppose, for stopping a spinout under normal conditions....but stupid as hell if you're stuck, because you cannot perform the usual rocking, back and forth, we're all used to doing to get un-stuck. NOW WHAT? Can anything go right today? Well...the tractor is running.
Okay... time to shovel a little more. Who cares that I already shoveled to Greenville or so in comparison. I shoveled bare paths behind each of the four tires, for about six feet or so, then jumped into the car and tried again. This time it backed up beautifully and I returned the car to its parking place at the house and returned for the tractor. After jumping on the tractor, the day took a turn for the better. Everything started to go as it should and I happily dealt with the snow and opened everything up as Vick took care of the animals, entertained her Mom and Dad, and invented her own ways to accomplish functions without electricity. We now do not take that energy for granted anymore. Life would be so tough without it! Now, it's snowing again! Rather briskly I might add...and they are calling for this evening into Friday to be a real nasty one, with snow, rain, then freezing rain and high winds with cold temperatures. Well, at least there isn't an earthquake forecast. We'll survive. Again, we're drawing water to drink and have lots of snow to melt for flushing toilets. We'll get by.....although I should say that it's always true, you know? What goes around...comes around.
I did make quite a lot of fun when Washington DC and you southerners were getting walloped.....So ok..... Now it's our turn.