Four Studded Tires and Three Frozen Eggs or… Life in the Cold Lane

Nov 24, 2010 | 1 comment

Ready for Winter

     Yesterday morning at dawn’s earliest light, Nyel bundled up and crunched over the icy lawn to the chicken coop.  He was pretty sure their water was frozen and we had been gone the day before so hadn’t checked for eggs.  There were three, one of which he dropped.  It only cracked but he opened it when he came back to the house and it was in a frozen, semi-gelled state.  He refrigerated it along with the other unopened eggs to use for cooking purposes.  (“Waste not want not” is Nyel’s favorite mantra.)     We could only hope that the closing refrigerator door marked the end of a rather stressful twenty-four hours.
     On Monday, since Nyel was not called to sub, we had headed across the river, car loaded with the studded tires for our semi-annual changing-of-the-wheels trek to Les Schwab’s.   Our first clue that we were in a world of hurt was that both the parking lots were full and there were a dozen or so cars parked along the street.  It was eleven o’clock in the morning and we were told we’d have a seven hour wait.  Yikes!  But, we already had an hour invested in the trip over there from Oysterville and we had a bit of shopping to do… so we had our name put on a list and headed for lunch.
     I heartily recommend the French fries at The Sand Trap, McMenamins restaurant near the Gearhart Golf Links.  The potatoes are hand-cut, fried to a golden brown, and are limp and greasy – exactly as I remember French fries from my teen years when I considered them, along with a coke, a complete meal.  The Sand Trap’s burgers aren’t bad either.
     Once fortified, we went on to the outlet stores at Seaside.  A bust, but we still had five and a half hours to kill.  Then to CostCo where we got a few necessities (not much room in the Cruiser with the four tires), saw several people from the beach and took time to visit, and then called Les Schwab to see if things had changed.  It was 2:30 and they said “about four more hours.”  It was getting worse.
      At Fred Meyer, we picked up a few more items, then made a few more stops and, last, at Ross-Dress-For-Less.  There I really scored – got a faux fur jacket, about car-coat length, that is reversible with a raincoat on the other side.  Almost my age-thirty-something dream of a full-length trench coat lined with mink that I could wear with nothing under it…  Almost.
     Back to Les Schwab.  It was 4:30 and we did, indeed, have to wait another two hours.  It turned out to be a pleasant time even though the waiting area was crowded-to-the-max with people standing and sitting on the floor.  Nyel and I were lucky enough to get seats near one another and it proved even luckier that Nyel was sitting next to an elegant-looking older (ahem!) woman who was reading a paperback mystery.  She and I struck up a conversation and ended comparing notes on the Mystery Book Clubs to which we each belong – mine a struggling fledgling, hers successful and going strong since 1993!  So we whiled away the time “talking books.”
     Home in Oysterville about 7:30 after a rather nerve-wracking drive, even with the studded tires on.  The pitch black, icy cold discouraged us from checking on the chickens.  And now I’m back to the beginning.

1 Comment

  1. Stephanie Frieze

    I love the title, Sydney. I guess there was a reason the DOT allowed studded tires a few days earlier than usual. Apparently they believed the predictions of a hard winter. Killing time at Ross is one of my favorite activities and I’m glad you scored something elegant yet useful! I hope the chickens don’t freeze. We’re keeping the light on in our back-porch-unheated-bathroom. I figure that if it works for chickens it might for toilets. The down side of these old Victorians is a decided lack of insulation. Happy Thanksgiving Eve!


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