VT Architect may survive ice storm... and moose

bob swinburne field

Here I am at a coffee shop in Williamstown, MA checking my e-mail, charging my laptop batteries and waiting for some folks to arrive for a meeting. My home has no power or phone and I will be surprised if we get either by the weekend. Cell phones don’t work within miles of my house. Such is Vermont. So I really have been incommunicado since Friday except for these forays into town. Perhaps a generator would be a good Christmas present after all. I noticed more neighbors have them this year. The folks down the road have solar photovoltaics and micro hydro so they’re fine. We’ve all been through the drill before. Candles, a woodstove to cook on and heat the house with, hauling water from our spring, lots of chainsaw work. The neighbors on our road were all out Friday morning clearing the road with chainsaws and plows but the power lines are all over the ground under trees and propped up with sticks where they pass over roads. The hardest part, really, is the food in the basement freezer. It is too warm to put it outside so I chopped some ice out of the pond and put it in the freezer. We freeze a lot of food in the fall, being the dutiful homesteaders and overzealous gardeners that we are. My two year old daughter is way into headlamps so she is fine. Yesterday, we visited friends with power (FWP) to take showers and do a load of cloth diapers. (yes, we really do practice what we preach eco-wise although no prius yet) We really should (and do) consider ourselves privileged to have electricity and telephone 97% of the time.

bob swinburne\'s driveway

Random note along the lines of why I live where I do and work from home: Last week I put on my lightweight winter boots (there was snow on the ground) and took the dog for an afternoon jog out to South Pond which is a few miles on trails through the woods behind my house. On the way we encountered the local female moose who seems to be getting rather used to us by now. I had my head down as I ran and nearly ran right into Ms. Moose. Peter Q Puppy enjoyed the chance to bark at her and send her on her way but she hardly seemed intimidated and just sort of wandered off. Mental note: moose are big. I returned home, split a little wood and returned to my work. Good day.