Bitter Cold Headed Our Way

Out water pipe runs up the left of this old logging road.
Out water pipe runs up the left of this old logging road.

While it looks like we will avoid the brunt of the blizzard expected to slam the Northeast with 12 to 18 inches of snow this weekend, we are getting some bitterly cold temperatures. My wife, who monitors the weather far more closely than I do, warned me we’re expecting -10 with colder wind chills.

That’s the kind of cold that can give the chickens frostbite. It’s also frozen pipe weather, less than a week after we unthawed 800 feet of pipe.

I decided to address the whole gravity-fed water system problem proactively. I walked up the mountain late yesterday afternoon and detached the pipe at the top juncture, close to the spring. As a result, there will be no water in the pipe, so it can’t freeze solid, locking up the system. When the weather warms up, I’ll walk back up there and re-attach it. Hopefully, that will be Monday and we’ll have enough water in the cistern to last until then.

At the very least, this should save us the hours and hours of bending the polyethylene pipe, like I discussed a few days ago, to break up the ice inside it.

In the future, I’ll have to find some valve that will let me vent water out or send it down the pipe. That should make it easier.

Finally Leaving the House

On Thursday, I left the house for the first time in 13 days. The snow kept us in for the first week and we just kept it going. We had a full day. First, I had an appointment. Then we went to lunch with friends, then my wife had an eye doctor appointment. I ran a few errands while she was waiting for her eyes to dilate, and then we went grocery shopping.

I guess we’re good for another two weeks.

We’ve been keeping pretty busy, both of us working on projects. We coordinate our schedules so that we know not to burst into the other’s office when they are on a webinar or conference call.

Local COVID has Peaked, Again

Like most of the country, cases of Omicron seem to have peaked and are now dropping again in our county. Many people in the county who test positive don’t even have any symptoms, which leads me to ask, why did they get tested?

We have had more positive tests than ever bur fewer deaths. More evidence that this is becoming an endemic and there’s not as much to worry about.

My youngest daughter got it last week. She said she was congested for two days and lost her sense of taste for three. She was vaxxed but not boosted.


This daughter is slowly becoming a prepper. During a phone call last week, we discussed what she should bring if she needed to bug out. (She has a small car, so what she can bring is limited.) I told her the most important things were clothing, especially underwear and outerwear, and multiple pairs of sturdy shoes. Then we discussed who she might bring, and the advantages of each individual in terms of their skills, ability and willingness to work hard, and experience with guns. Obviously, they would drive their vehicle and could bring more.

She wanted to know if she should stop and buy anything on the way. I told her she would be better off shopping once they got to this area. Better to be nearby with an empty car than far away with a full one. She was already aware of the importance of leaving early in an emergency and had a stash of emergency cash in case the gas stations were not accepting plastic.

Later, I talked to a close friend and recommended he fill up his gas tanks. He isn’t doing any mowing this time of year, which is one reason he stores gas, but gas purchased in the winter lasts longer because of the formulation used by the refiners to increase cold-weather starting power. More importantly, I expect energy prices to jump if a war breaks out in Ukraine.

It’s a good time to be an American and not a European.

Come to think of it, it’s almost always been good to be an American and not a European.