Water, Water Everywhere, but Not a Drop to Drink
January 5, 2017
I woke up early to the sound of something pelting the roof of the camper. I thought it was probably rain, because when I went to bed it was 40 degrees, then when I checked 10 minutes later, it was up to 43.
I was wrong! It wasn’t rain, it was snow. The wind has been blowing steadily, so instead of inches-we have snowdrifts. Now as I look out the window…it’s snowing sideways! I’m fighting a nasty cold, so I’m planning on staying inside as much as I can today.
January 9, 2017
It snowed off and on all day yesterday, covering all the bare spots from the storm before. It’s beautiful, but I’m suddenly aware that too many days like this could prove very tricky for us. When my son and I took his kids to town we were met with a slippery road all along our trail to the turn-off. The main road wasn’t much better.
I let Dave know he wouldn’t be able to go get us water, probably for a few days. We’ve been rationing water since the last fill up almost a week ago. I bought water jugs to fill in and we’ve been drinking bottled water since we’ve moved up here. Once we have a chance to empty them, and get the water tank filled, we’ll fill the jugs for back-up and to use in the bathroom. It’s amazing how much water you use to flush a toilet. Seems a waste…(Pun intended).
Our heating system is working fine. Even our son’s camper, which isn’t exactly a four season rig, is doing great. We haven’t had any frozen pipes. Of course the tips from friends and my parents about skirting and insulating were invaluable.
This whole experience is an eye opener about all things with nature, weather and off grid life. When you live on the grid snow and ice are inconvenient, but at least you can flush your toilet and take a shower if you want to. We’re working out a system for taking showers every other day. Not too bad (at least I don’t think we smell too bad.)
This morning we were met with a different challenge. A freezing rain has been pounding the camper all morning. My car, and more importantly, the solar panels are covered in a thick sheet of ice. Luckily I don’t HAVE to go anywhere, that is unless we run out of fuel for the generator. The weather is gray, cloud covered, and foggy so probably not much solar gain today.
I’m hoping Dave can get us water and gas when he gets home from work tonight. It’s all fun and games till the gas runs out.
To make things worse I’m still fighting that nasty cold. I feel a little lonely as I listen to the coyotes call through the fog in the middle of the day.
January 24, 2017
It took me a while, but it finally hit…The winter blues. There have been hints of it before, but I’ve been so busy trying to keep up with everything while still fighting this cold. I’ve been sick for a month now, with the cough deep in my chest, keeping me awake coughing all night.
I have the blues every winter, usually January and February are the worst for me. It hits me when the weather is cold, usually without the beauty of snow. The brown grass, the bare trees and the gray skies prove to be a challenge for me. We’ve had plenty of snow up here, then it melts and we’re left with MUD. Let me say this now, I can’t stand MUD. I know, I’m in a bad place for that. I’ll learn to live with it, but I don’t like it.
I’m finally getting the hang of water rationing. With our back-up supply of water jugs in the power shed, it’s helped a lot. The shower thing is a bit more difficult. I wash my hair in the kitchen sink and am learning to take sink baths every night. I let Dave have the shower water, he works hard every day, I don’t.
I watch the weather religiously, trying to time my daily trips to town, and to try and figure out when Dave can get us more water. Do you see a theme here? We can manage just over a week between fill-ups now. I love that we have friends and family/sister that offer showers and a bed if we need it.
So, as I sit and look out at the gray day, I’m reminded once again that things aren’t nearly as bad as I perceive them to be. We have warm bed, (a new mattress by the way), food, family, and views to die for. I still am not sure what God’s plan is in all of this, but I’m sure he’ll see us through all the way.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “Plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”