March 9, 2020 Monday
Today was another series of small disasters.
First the water delivery truck got stuck trying to back down our snow covered gravel road. The driver got a little off the roadway and buried his left rear tires in the snow when he tried to force his way through. He had partially chained up when he first backed off the main road onto our street. He only chained one axle. After he got stuck, he installed the chains on the second axle. This didn’t get him out. He borrowed a couple of different shovels and dug himself out after about a 1/2 hour. Instead of getting straight in the road and backing on up to fill our water tank, he left. A call to his office led to a discussion that still left us waterless. They demanded that we plow the road before they will come back on Tuesday. We haven’t, as of 3:00 PM, been able to find someone to plow the road. So I’m guessing that we’ll be without water for a few more days. Called the water office this afternoon and the polite young lady told me that unless we plowed the road they weren’t coming back. She asked if I wanted to talk with the delivery supervisor. Had to tell her “No” as I would, certainly, be wasting a few of the limited number of breaths that I have left. What is really aggravating they want the road plowed and the driver backed into an area that wouldn’t be plowed anyway. This is what they meant by Catch-22.
The second small disaster came when I was packing down the loose snow with the Range Rover. All wheel drive got me up and down the road 6-7 times before I did what the truck driver did and got off the road. The Range Rover was stuck and not coming out. Shoveled out the opposite side of the road so that other persons could get in and out. After calling every one of the 4 people that I know, I found no help.
Third small disaster. I decided that, even though I had no one to drive the Rover, I’d use the Beast to pull it out sans driver. The Beast is a Ram 350 Double Cab Diesel Dually. Started the Ram and let it warm up before taking it the 200 feet down the road to the Rover. Couldn’t find a chain so I procured a very strong rope. Tied the two together and tried backing up. Almost got the Rover out before the Beast slid sideways and off the road. It was now, also, stuck. Had to cut the rope loose (Bowlines knots pulled so tight that they wouldn’t come loose) from both vehicles so that another car could pass between them. So now I’ve go both vehicles stuck. Shoveled out the opposite of the road so that a car could pass.
Fourth small disaster was when I went searching for my ratcheting Come Along. Ten minute of search turned up nothing. Wandered around for another ten minutes trying to figure out where the hell I had stored the racheting device. I remembered that I had a brand new 20 ton Chain Fall. This would easily pull the Rover out by attaching it to the Beast. Spent another 30 minutes picking up everything in the storage container without finding the chain fall. It is in an unopened box is a cube about 1 foot in all directions. and weighs 40+ pounds. It should have been easy to spot. NOT!! By this time I am completely flummoxed. Since it wasn’t even 5:00 o’clock on the East Coast, I did not resort to vodka.
With both vehicles stuck in opposite ditches, I decided that it was time for lunch. After lunch I looked for a chain and then remembered that all three 20′ chains were on the trailer buried in nearly 3 feet of snow. Luckily the trailer was parked only 30 feet from the road with just 2-3 feet of undisturbed snow between the road and the trailer. Walking through that snow is called post holing. It requires struggling to pick up on foot and put it in front. By the time I got to the trailer I was out of breath. Got there only to find that the chain, I needed, was frozen to the deck of the trailer. What follows is a struggle to and from the road in order to bring a shovel to pry up the frozen chain. Back on the road with chain draped over my shoulder I revisited the disabled Rover. My first thought was to flag down a neighbor and ask them to pull the Rover backward onto the road. After a closer look, it was obvious that pulling it backwards was going to make it end up down the embankment and into the pond. Because of the Beast being in the opposite ditch no one could get in front to pull it forward. The solution that came to me was to throw the chain under the spinning left front wheel. HOORAY!! The damned thing moved a couple of feet. Moved the chain two more times and the Rover was free. Put it back in it’s parking place and walked back to the Beast. Arriving back at the Beast I put the chain on the tow hook and walked to the end of the road. There I stood around for about ten minutes before I flagged down a nice man in another Ram Beast. He had me out of the ditch in less than five minutes. It took longer to back up and hook up than to pull the Beast out. Parked the Beast and moved onto the next things on my daily list of chores.
At about 5:15PM, as I was working on my daily chores, the water truck arrived. The guy had seen that I had packed down the snow and he decided to give it another go. Of course, I thanked him profusely. FINALLY, water!!!!!
The fifth small disaster was when turned on the pump and no water came out of the faucets. Went back to the pump and made sure that it was primed. The prime was not the problem. The pipe is frozen somewhere. Set the jet heater up and let it blow into the water shed for over an hour and still no water. I surrendered and went to the vodka place.
Tomorrow has some possibilities of getting the water flowing, but today is a bust.