“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.”

― Frank Herbert

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Weather Event

I have been enjoying having my wife home, and we've been getting lots of chores done that need two people. All the more so because this big storm is coming in.  The rain is already here, and it's supposed to turn to sleet by early afternoon, then snow.  In a few minutes I'll be taking one of the Jeeps down to the hard surface road to leave it. I still may not be able to travel any, because our hard surface road is not one of those the county plows. It's a dead certainty, though, that I can't get off the mountain if we get ice or deep snow.

Yesterday we reinforced the dog house with more hay, and built a smaller version on the porch for the cats. Temperatures here will be around 15 degrees by tomorrow, according to the Weather Channel, and that means the actual temperate at my place on the mountain may be considerably colder.

We also made the obligatory pilgrimage to the two grocery stores in town along with every other denizen of the country.  It's more like a county fair than anything else. In our case, we were picking up extra supplies of "nice to have" things like apple cider, fresh cinnimon, a big spiral cut ham, and other good things to eat. After all, if a person is going to be snowed in for a few days, you want to have something besides canned, frozen or dried provisions.

The big chore yesterday was getting the new propane tank set. This should have been a quick, painless evolution but it never is. The men setting the tank got a leak indication on the gauge, and they were just sure it was the step down valve. You have a "shut off" valve on the tank, but there's another valve somewhere in the line that steps the pressure down, because your appliances can't run at the pressure levels coming out of the tank into the line.  I told them there was no way that my step down valve had just suddenly started leaking with their arrival, but nothing would do except testing it. Then they tested the tank they'd just brought and the regulator on that was the problem.  Wasted half an hour with fiddling around on the step down valve and then had to spend another half hour swapping out the regulator but in the end, I had a new tank and plenty of gas. As I listen to the wind and rain outside this morning, and in the certain knowledge that a big snow storm is coming, I'm glad we got it done but the gas company cut it mighty thin time wise.

It is going to snow  where the kids are. But further north I am sure they know how to deal with snow, and have the equipment to do so.  People probably know better how to drive in snow, as well. Both of my kids have stout Jeeps, and I'm never happier that we didn't buy cheap passenger cars for them than I am when something like this is going on.

The last few days I've been off the air because we were working hard here, trying to get things done before the bad weather.  If I disappear for a bit , it will be because the power is off.  I can power my own place with my generator, but if the county loses power I'll lose the internet, and that's the one thing I don't have a back up system for.  We are considering putting in a Hughes Net satellite system, depending on the cost, to cover that vulnerability.

14 comments:

  1. Your weather has arrived here with hard rain and afterwards 'they' call for a freeze in our area. I like it. I too need a boost to my provisions. My fresh turkey is on standby...have a good one my friend.

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    1. Stephen, I see you folks are getting pounded with wind and rain, and even have tornado warnings out. Here it has been a deluge. About 4 inches to this point,and I'm really not set up for that much water in such a short period. I cleaned out the upslope drainage ditches but some have overrun. I have a "last ditch" line across the back of the shop and that seems to be diverting the overflow. The rain has pretty much stopped now, but it's getting very cold outside.

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  2. Batten down the hatches!!!

    Which reminds me I need to build some more Winter boxes for the cat population as well. I forgot we have four new barn cats now. I bet they took over the dog's house inside the barn and left him out in the cold. That's what usually happens that dog is such a pushover when it comes to cats pushing him around.

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    1. We got our dog house all reinforced because the wind is supposed to gust up to 50 mph here tomorrow. The cat refuge is made of pieces of firewood for a frame, surrounded by heavy flakes of hay. I checked on them a few minutes ago and one old momma cat has gotten inside and is trying to keep everybody else out. That won't last long. The three Tomcats are much larger than her and their patience is wearing thin.

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  3. Good luck, beaming you only a light sprinkling. pictures please! see you on the other side!

    Happy Thanks Giving! (I thought I would say it now just in case)

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    1. Thanks, Sol . We are doing Thanksgiving at the house but we have everything we need,and we are snug and warm up here. I'll take some pictures tomorrow with any luck.

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  4. Thought it was quiet around here!

    Just to make you feel a bit warmer, our temperature yesterday was 108.6F and an even hotter today! So while you might be freezing, we will be melting lol!

    On my blog I have left some youtube links about our region for you to view when you get a chance. That's if they will work in your area :)

    Take care and stay safe, and we will see you soon :)

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    1. Tania,
      I'm looking forward to those links. I've been reading a lot about Australia lately, and studying Australian dialect. It's a lot of fun. I may go there someday to see the country, I've wanted to for years. If we wind up moving to a condo in Florida after my wife retires, we can travel some. That's one of the factors she is using to lure me into agreeing to that plan.

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  5. Curious? Did you have any propane left in the old tank? If so did were you able to transfer it over to the new tank or is it just "gone"?

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    1. Yes. What they do, is they have a small gas powered pump, which they hook up to the old tank and move your gas to the new tank. Gas costs so much that leaving the remainder in the old tank isn't an option. The only problem is that the heavy chemicals added to the gas to make it stink, so you can smell a leak, settle to the bottom. If you happen to be standing down wind when they pull the hose off the fitting, and all that stink blows into the air, it makes your eyes water. I proved this to my satisfaction when I got a face full of it yesterday. No way in hell I'd let the old company keep the gas I paid for. If I couldn't get it into my new tank I'd open the valve and let it breach first.

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  6. Im always amused when folks ecperience temps in the teens and think is the end of the world. Heck, it's been five degrees every morning here for the last week or so.

    Figured you musta been busy or something. But, y'know, it's nice to blog when *you* want to, not because people expect it of you. I post usually every second or third day and thats plenty for me and folks seem okay with that.

    Just bought a small Honda generator the other day and started stockpiling non-wthanol gas for it today, so I'm kinda pleased. I need to get one of those tri-fuel conversions for it so I can just get a big propane tank and run it off that and save all the gas for the truck.

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    1. Low teens might not be the end of the world but living up here is a lot harder at those temperatures than at above freezing. Everything gets slick, the animals water freezes, the vehicles can't go down the mountain, if I get hurt the ambulance can't get up here and I can't get out. I have to heat my pump house to keep all that from freezing up. Anybody who doesn't check their radiator fluid runs the risk of ending up with a cracked radiator. Lots of disadvantages, and the only advantage I can see is the tourists avoid this place like the plaque when we have snow.

      I just run diesel in my generator. I like the fact that with two 500 gallon tanks, I have enough fuel for a lot of hours on the generator and fuel for the truck in an emergency.

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    2. Wow - that's cold. I always feel for animals, too, when the weather is extreme - sorta like I want to bring them inside where I can watch / help them through the worst if I have to.


      Do you normally have snow now? Throw a ball for me if you get the chance :) Happy Thanksgiving.

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    3. Dani, It's about one in the morning here and sleeting hard. I was just out on the porch checking one of my dogs. She's got a bad cough. We made her a good bed on the porch so I can give her medicine during the night.

      We usually get snow starting in mid December. This past summer the weather was much wetter and cooler than usual, Fall came early and was colder, and now this. It looks to be a long winter.

      Thanks, we are just staying home and relaxing over the holiday. My wife has a week off from school so we went to the library and she got a huge bag of books to read. She has her nest on the couch by the fire so she is content. I am just pottering around the house enjoying having her home.

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