One has to plan a bit differently for a trip to the Farm in winter. A bit beyond the basics of ‘what clothes to wear and take along’ . That and ‘how are the roads on the five hour trip‘. Those are common to everyone. The difference is that most folks won’t stay in the milk house that is attached to the barn. Following is the current trip as an example:
I know the temperature in the milk house will be just a couple of degree higher than ambient. So if it is 23 degrees F outside(it was when I arrived), it will be about 27 or 28 inside. Thus the questions:
- Is there enough propane in the tank to fire up and run the propane heater? (Enough for two days… good!)
- How long will it take to get the inside temp to a livable 50 degrees F? (About 8 hours, it is what it is)
- Is there enough propane in the other tank to cook food with? (No, trip to town required unless I only use the microwave, yuck!)
- How will I stay warm enough not to get sick in the time it takes to warm up the milk house to a livable temp? (hmmm… wool blankets and a sleeping bag and layers of clothing. The first and second are here… no problem.. did a lousy job on the clothing this time… shit!)
- Are the water pipes frozen? (No, good!)
- What are my sources of heat? (small propane heater for which I have fuel, stove for which I do not have fuel, food dehydrator which adds a bit of heat, small 1500 watt electric heater, body heat)
- The cement floor will not heat up. This is a known. How the hell do I keep my feet warm!(wear shoes or heavy slippers, yuck, but ‘Oh Well’
- Do I have food? (Yes, always some here, frozen, but still good)
- So now what? I arrive at 02:30 in the morning and have been awake since 05;00 the morning of the day before. My weekly dose of 40mg of Dexamethazone is helping with that but I am somewhat stoned and numb from the steroids. Wound up like a 10 day clock and it is hard to concentrate on little things. Make sure I keep that in mind when making decisions. If I get too wound up, force myself to sit down and do one thing… like writing this. This is not me just blathering on about some inconsequential, mundane subject (though inconsequential and mundane fit nicely). This is me settling down so I can function without causing damage to myself or, worse, collateral damage! Now, I have the justification for this missive out of the way, needed or not.
The reason I am here is to:
- check over the general state of the farm. Equipment, building etc….
- check the bees.
- Did they survive the cold?
- Do they have enough food?
- Are the hives and insulation in good shape? Or did a hungry skunk come along and tear up the hive and eat the bees?
- Get the hell out of suburbia. I love my grandson and having the opportunity to be with him. But suburbia is not healthy for me for long periods of time, and gernerally, I don’t like suburbia even though I have lived in it most of my adult life. It is a place to be with family, sleep, eat and shit. Beyond that it bores be to death. I need to get to the Farm where no matter where I go I see normal, natural life! That is just who and what I am, and it took me years to figure it out.
- Possibly arrange for the sale of one asset.
So not all that much to accomplish in two days. But I am very slow, and will be lucky to accomplish even that much. It is what it is… . Just put my head down and do what I can (but no self damage and no collateral damage, gotta keep thinking clearly!!!) I need to leave at the latest by Tuesday at noon to make my next chemo treatment. So… knuckle down and get the shit done… and enjoy it!!! It is not just a responsibility, but a privelege! Much like my family and grandsons…
Time is a wasting, and I feel better now that I have got it all set down on a medium I can come back to. Why share it? I really don’t know. The need for human connection I guess. I hate to admit it, but I am subject to that need….damn!!!
(Note: it is not that I hate being connected to people, it is that I hate the NEED for it. Two very different things in my view.) I do hate that!
But it is what it is… and thus: Here is my connection. My hope is that it makes someone laugh or even just bored…they can always move on to something more entertaining…. I probably would. LoL..
Time to get at it.