Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Brain Freeze

You know, sometimes I stop to think....
then forget to start again.


Icicle in 2004- and my Hally-Boo in full fleece in Spring

Okay, so I have strange heroes. I know I was supposed to finish writing the letter to my daughter for her birthday and post it tonight, but today's stupidity completely shut down the muse. (note: this actually happened on 1/14, but is just letting me post it now, go figure)

Today was yet another brilliant example of the human mind at work. It has been very cold at our house the last few nights. We were told it would get cold, we knew it would be cold, very cold. So we put our boxes around the standing hose bibs and pipes, and we made sure all the chickens and cats were in the house. Extra food for the pacas, and coat on my Mithril llama boy. Usually we get maybe three or four nights with temps as low as 18 degrees, but this was different. It was 19, then 17, then 15, then on this night it was supposed to get even colder. Strangely, it has been a very dry winter so far- so not even some really cool icicles for pictures.

This morning I got up to find ice making a lovely window frame in my bedroom.... on the inside.

So I go to check the temps and it is 10 degrees outside, and that is up against my house on the no wind side. Brrr!! I go to put on the teapot, no water. Okay, pipes are frozen. Wow, that has never happened here before!

I go outside to break the ice on the pacas water- can't. It's frozen about 3" thick. I go to turn on the hose, oh yea! No water.

So I think, I'm gonna have to boil a LOT of water so I return to the kitchen where I actually take the teapot to the sink again- but, alas, no water.... so I proceed to go outside again with the hatchet and break up the ice.

I come back in the house thinking, "Sure glad we all took showers last night for church!" and decide to make hot cereal. I get out the 10 grain and grab a pot and take it to the sink, Oh yea, no water!

I wake everyone up from their mummy bags (we only have one heater in the house and it's in the living room) and then, ** WARNING grossness here** you know that stuff that's in your throat each and every morning that you just have to hack up and spit out? You don't? What, you don't have allergies??!! Anyway, I go to hack in the sink where I can wash the offending goo down into the septic tank, I turn on the faucett- oops.... no water to wash said goo down with..... yuck.

Then I think, "Why don't I just brush my teeth while I'm here!" I dole out the Listerine and turn on the tap....Oh yeah, no WATER!!
Then I start getting the family up for church, and inform hubby and son (daughter is at granny's) that there is no water so time your toilet flushes accordingly. I consider making a 'flush chart' but decide to just tell everyone no flushing unless you need to go, well, you know.

In 5 minutes flat everyone has flushed away all of the water in the tanks. Oh boy... since there's no telling when the pipes will not be frozen, this could be a problem. (and later, it certainly is..... double yuck)

Sure enough when we return from church, no water. And, instead of my wishes for water when the pipes unfreeze, broken pipes. Hubby starts muttering about Flux and other technical stuff and takes a road trip to the ACE Hardware up in Frazier, where he joins the throngs of people desperately grabbing up all the pipe insulation in the store. He darts in, gets the last three tubes of insulation, and then has to lose the granny who is on his tail after it.

After ditching her in the paint section, where she gets momentarily distracted by a dazzling wall display of paint samples, he stealthily makes his way to the checkout counter where he is relieved not to find granny. He comes home with Flux (what the?? is my intelligent question) and said tubes and goes to work.

4 hours later, he gets the pipe rerouted and patched, turns on the water (where an electric heater has been defrosting it the whole time) and SPROING!! another leak.
Poor hubby, he is out there in the freezing cold with his bad knees and no end of cracked pipes in sight- I should make him a cup of hot chocolate! I go to the faucett..... oh YEAH!!!!!!

No water.

Meanwhile, I am thirsty- and I mean, powerful thirsty. And yup, you guessed it- no water.

Okay, I'll drink milk- no milk. I'll drink juice! No juice. In fact, there is at this time absolutely no liquid of any kind in my house except for tomato juice.

Don't get me wrong, I like my V-8 as much as anyone else, but it's thirst quenching capabilities are sorely lacking.
Soon the thought of my thirst is all consuming, I must have something to drink, NOW!

In sheer desperation, I break out the 1 gallon bottle of distilled water that's hidden way in the back of the pantry for, erm, I don't remember what.... triple yuck....

But I manage to choke down half the bottle in a single gulp.

Then, *fanfare please* my delightful hubby comes back in the house with icicles coming out of his nostrils, and announces- the pipes are fixed!!

I run to the kitchen put on the teapot, wash the dishes, brush my teeth, make hot cereal for the neighbors, do three loads of laundry, water the plants and drink a quart of water. Then we start making apple cider for the pacas.

Isn't it funny how we come to rely so heavily on modern conveniences? I mean, we really get it ingrained into our psyche. How many times did I go to turn on the water?? 10?? And I knew there was no water. Surely I don't have that bad of a memory.

What were we talking about??

I think everyone should go a whole day with their pipes frozen so you can learn what I did.... um, okay, so really you all should so you can suffer like I did.


Robin - Erithacus rubecula said...

Rachelle but doesn't it make you appreciate it when the water flows again?

I am glad to hear you are back with the water running.

Rachelle Black said...

Oh yes it does! I am frequently seen running to the faucett and turning it on just to reassure myself that we do, indeed, have running water. My kids think I'm crazy, but then they can't believe I grew up without PS2's and remote controls either, so they really don't get me anyway.

I am very, very grateful for running water, but just in case we are all stocked up with non-distilled bottles in the pantry. :))

Sarah said...

I'm sorry to know I know about the morning "goo" in the back of your throat and that part made my stomach churn. Amazing how much we rely on something we usually don't even think about. Your husband is a super-man to beat out the old lady at the hardware store for the insulation :)

On another note - I hope you don't mind but I did some damage control on my blog and took down someone's comment and part of yours that responded to it. As much as I want to start a comment thread about undies...oh wait - I don't!

Rachelle Black said...

I have no problem with it, I was actually really curious what she meant. Clueless here... is it the firm grip and direct look in the eyes when we shake hands?

-sigh- I don't get it, but then I usually don't! :))

ps... sorry about the stomach churning thingy.

Suzy Hepworth said...

I can't start my day and function without a pint of squash in th morning - sounds like a 'mare. Your blog is hilarious - love ths Sari Incident...

Suze x

Rachelle Black said...

Hi there Suzy, welcome!
Thank you very much, I try so to be clever and charming, but most often it is my innate silliness that takes over and causes chaos in my life that I get to then share with you!
Come back and visit again!
ps... okay, I'll bite- what's squash? My best guess is potatoes.

Mousie said...

I remember having no current water when I was a little girl, that was so tiring to go to the village pump to get buckets...we are so licky nowadays except when it's so cold...but I'm forgetting what cold means these rainy and good either...
so glad you have water now...whisky isn't very nice to clean teeth!!!
love from mousie

cozmic said...

Hi Rachelle, good to know that you have water again. I hope you gave your husband a good hug!! Here in spain the last couple of years have been a little difficult. Because of the drought situation during the summer when the tourists visit they turn off our water here in the campo so that the visitors have continuous water. We maybe have water for a couple of days a week. But the thing is they don't tell you WHEN. We ended up using the swimming pool water to flush the toilets. We made a little poem, (nasty bit coming up!!) if its yellow let it mellow, if its brown flush it down. Hopefully this year the water situation will improve.
We are in the middle teens thats Centigrade, round about 60 Farenheit, but at night it gets really chilly and drops to about 8 Centigrade/ 45-46 Farenheit. Don't know what I would do if we went any lower!! Take care, cozmic

Rachelle Black said...

Hay Cozmic!
Wow, you know I wrote this as a joke to point out how silly I was about not having any water. I look back on it and realize it looks like I'm really a whiner LOL, I didn't mean it to come out that way.

You really have it bad there! Why do you have to pay so the tourists have water?? And in the summer, when it's so hot. Boy, hope you have a good supplier of bottled water near you.

Really, I am so blessed.

cozmic said...

Rachelle, sorry you thought that I was pointing out that you are a 'whiner' I know you aren't, really I do. It wasn't meant to be a competition either, its just a fact of life. You write so well, its a joy to read these little tidbits of your life. As for the tourists, well they are considered to be of more importance to this country than the people who live here, but I tell you now that if we had known this before we got here, I don't know whether we would have stopped here, as for the water, well we have got the sea!!?? cozmic, may your god be with you.

Rachelle Black said...

Hay Cozmic,
I never took anything you said as being negative towards myself in any way :))
I was merely pointing out that I do, in fact whine LOL.
Tis a fact of life! Tee-hee

Please, I didn't think you were being competitive at all, but merely pointing out the facts of water in your life. Which, if I may say, so totally suck worse than mine in the water situation.

So, onward and upwards!
Love ya!

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