(Originally posted on the website Continuum…)
HERE I AM on a snowy Saturday morning at the end of the year 2000. The snow appears to be falling with a cold determination to bury us deep this time. The weatherman was calling for twelve inches or more. He says its going to to snow all day.
At least we have heat today! The day after Christmas the heat went out for the third time this winter! (Yes, I have one of “those” landlords.) Then, once we had heat that day, we had no water because a pipe cracked in the basement. When I returned from picking up H and M, the lady downstairs said, “We are waiting for someone to come fix the pipe. The landlord said someone was coming.” Right…..
That was around 1 in the afternoon.
By 2 in the afternoon, no one was here to fix the water and “nature was screaming!” I wasn’t about to comply with nature when there was no water to flush the evidence of my compliance! So, I got my coat on and informed the kids that I was setting off to find a bathroom.
I decided to go to the China Garden restaurant to seek my relief. I had eaten there plenty of times without leaving a decent tip. So I figured it was time to give a little something back! Then it occurred to me that I might as well get an order to go since we had not eaten lunch yet. That was perfect! I could use their bathroom AND return home with something for the kids to eat! I could take care of two of life’s necessities in one swift “movement”!
The kids loved the broccoli and chicken….
WE still haven’t finished decorating our Christmas tree. I did put some lights up along the steps outside on December 23. I also put the tree in its stand in the living room that day. But no one put any lights on it until December 26. The lights are on “upside down” so that the prongs to plug them in are sticking out at the top of the tree about two miles from the nearest outlet. After driving to Harrisburg and back on the 26th, I just had no inspiration to fix those lights. We’ll do it right next year! The way I see it, as a single father, it was a major accomplishment just getting that tree into the living room in time for Christmas! Lights and decorations are dispensables and frivolities – not necessities like heat, water and Chinese food!
SO NOW I am preparing to face a day snowed in with three teenages, a four and a six year old. It’s the latest version of “Survivor.” Who will emerge from the apartment alive once the blizzard passes? Will Dad have any sanity left by the end of the blizzard? If we run out of food here we have no rats to eat…. But J did get a hamster for Christmas…. If the heat goes out again, we can “light” that Christmas tree up to keep warm. But what if we have no water again???? What then????
I wonder if the Chinese place delivers in the snow…….
(* This entry is dedicated to a girl who called herself Yen and had a website called Nostalgic Thoughts. She gave me the encouragement to finally start this journal! She has since disappeared and I often wonder where she went.)