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Country Discussion Topics
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The sounds of silence
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Cindi    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:14:35       [Reply]  [No Email]
Today was twenty-fifth of August. It's been twelve days since Charley. This is significant because today...our power came back on. After twelve days at twenty dollars a day in diesel and unleaded gas to power the generators, we are back to depending on PRECO to keep us and our food cool. No more getting up in the middle of the night to refill the generator. No more muttered curse words when we shake can after can only to find out that...gulp...we're out of gas!

We had a generator running on the front porch to power the window unit air conditioner in the living room, one on the back porch for the washer and dryer, and a hulking diesel unit running at the east end of the house that powered the well pump, the septic pump, refrigerator and assorted switches and plugs throughout the house. For twelve days it has sounded like we were living on the runway at Tampa International Airport. Now the generators are quiet. Each one resting in its assigned location after running almost twenty-four hours a day for twelve days. No more noise, no more rumble of motors, just the sounds of crickets. So why is it that it's 3:17 a.m. and I can't sleep? It's too danged quiet.

Its funny how quickly one can get used to something even if its a bad thing. And its not just me. Old Elvis is having trouble sleeping as well. I was already awake when I heard him growling on the back porch. The growl soon turned into chuffing little barks, and then full blown indignant barks. I stumbled through the darkness to get to him before he woke the whole house.

"Elvis!" I hissed through the window in the back door.

He jumped like he'd been goosed with a cattleprod.

"You scared the waddin' out of me!" His eyes said.

"What the he11 are you barking at?" I asked.

His head swung around and he peered into the darkness of the back yard.

"Well, there's a...it's like a rattling kind of...some kind of rustling." He sat down and sighed and finally confessed the truth. "I have no idea."

"Come on, now. You know better than that. You haven't barked just for the sake of barking since you were six months old." I went out and stood next to him on the porch.

"I can't help it! Its like all the sudden I can hear for fifty miles! I can hear a fly land on my water bowl. I can hear better than I did when I was a puppy."

"Elvis. Darlin'. You can hear because this thing," I kicked the generator, "isn't running anymore."

I would swear he blushed.

"Oh. Is that it?"

"Yeah, that's it. So do me a favor, and shut the hell up, huh?"

He turned around a couple of times and laid down, his tail thumping slowly.

"Consider it done."

(smile)


George in TX    Posted 08-26-2004 at 13:26:58       [Reply]  [No Email]
Only Cindi could tell a story of having a conversation with her dog and make it sound so real. Great story and thanks.

I'm glad to see you're getting back to something resembling normal. Hang in there gal. You're tough as nails and squeezable sweet at the same time.


Patria    Posted 08-26-2004 at 12:26:56       [Reply]  [No Email]
My mom had just come back from heart surgery when hurricane George hit us...also my daughter was going through some very rough times...you know? i thought i would loose it...and then? life went on. Just take care of first things first..or something like that:-)


rhouston    Posted 08-26-2004 at 06:25:41       [Reply]  [No Email]
I've gotten the impression you've reconciled with your husband. Is this true ? or is it just temporary due to Charley ? or maybe just none of my business?


Cindi    Posted 08-26-2004 at 06:52:59       [Reply]  [No Email]
Good question...and entirely fair, since you've been included all along.

No. In fact, if anything we both seem to have become more determined to part again as soon as is physically possible.

If he's waiting for me to admit to wrong doing and beg his forgiveness, he's wasting his time.

I have made it clear that this is his house and we are guests and as such we have done our best to be good guests, but I have stopped doing all the things he has taken for granted over the years. Feeding, making repairs, and so on. I have taken over all the household chores again, I contribute to the purchase of groceries and so on, but this is his farm. He wanted me out of it, said I wasn't doing anything to help anyway, and he could get by just fine without me.

So I'm letting him.

The storm tore away the underpinning and pulled the duct work for the a/c loose, so before we could turn on the central air yesterday, someone had to crawl under the house and fix it and repair the underpinning again. A few months ago, I was the one under the house doing that job. You may rememeber, I wrote about the high electric bill. Yesterday I left it up to him, and he did say something about it.

I reminded him that when this was MY farm as well, I did such repairs, but not anymore. I am not going to be told that I am useless and then allow myself to be used. A few more months of him having to do everything I did for four years and maybe he'll get the point, but by then it won't matter anymore. When two people really love each they shouldn't have to prove their value to one another. One day soon, I'll have my own farm again.


Dieselrider    Posted 08-26-2004 at 11:12:51       [Reply]  [No Email]
I guess i was thinking that way too, that you might be back together. Something that upsets the begeebers out of me about myself is most of the time I can come up with some smart a$$ coment on most things but, when I'd like to say something comforting or truely helpful nothing happens inside this head but "DUH". It's not that I don't care just, some circuits are shorted I guess.

Maybe you remember the movie "Jeremiah Johnston" where they just killed an elk and the old man looks at Jeremiah and says "you didn't like it down below, huh?" and Jeremiah answers "It uoght to been different." That's what I wish for you, Cindi. Later.


KellyGa    Posted 08-26-2004 at 06:23:28       [Reply]  [No Email]
Noise noise noise! I bet you had enough noise to last you for a long time to come! At least you had the generators though. Glad to hear you are back for real, and I enjoyed Elvis's thoughts. :) Thanks.


Sid    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:39:46       [Reply]  [No Email]
Glad to hear the progress report.


mojo    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:32:35       [Reply]  [No Email]
Great story! I'd think those grenerators would be music since you really needed them. Testimonial to quality to run for so long with no problems. Glad to have you back!


Salmoneye    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:26:06       [Reply]  [No Email]
Nice...

Missed you...



Chad K    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:29:23       [Reply]  [No Email]
dang Salmoneye,
stop talking so much! ;-)



Salmoneye    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:34:22       [Reply]  [No Email]
Sorry...

;-)



Chad K    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:22:12       [Reply]  [No Email]
Awesome story! I sure do enjoy them!

--Chad


Les    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:21:53       [Reply]  [No Email]
What a relief that must be to you. When we had our ice storm here in January of '98, we didn't get some of our seasonal (summer only) customers back on until June.
I be there'll be a lot of generators for sale cheap down your way soon if not already.


jeanette    Posted 08-26-2004 at 05:47:22       [Reply]  [No Email]
aww how cute!! animals do seem to communicate with us in there own way don't they? glad to hear every thing is getting sort of back to normal.


Cindi    Posted 08-26-2004 at 06:08:39       [Reply]  [No Email]
Oh they were a BLESSING no doubt about it! We were fairly close to normal, a lot closer than many folks for sure. But they did have their downfalls, such as their knack for running out of gas in the middle of the night, when it was POURING DOWN RAIN.

We had a couple of close calls with them too. Jake filled up the one on the front porch one night for Fred and left the half empty gas can sitting right next to the exhaust manifold. By morning the side of the plastic can was all black and bubbled, a definite fire hazard. We had to stock up on gas in the tens of gallons at a time, and that worried me...having fifty or sixty cans of gas sitting near the house.

ON the upside, a rep from FEMA came out and surveyed our damage and determined that we qualified for emergency assistance. Three days later the funds for an energency grant were deposited into my checking account. The first time we have ever qualified for any type of government assistance. It felt good and bad.


Larry 8N75381    Posted 08-26-2004 at 08:11:20       [Reply]  [No Email]
"The first time we have ever qualified for any type of government assistance. It felt good and bad."

Please don't forget that YOU paid for part of that assistance (as well as everyone that paid taxes - and that will be MOST of those that read this board and think of you as a "neighbor" we would help in any way we can) SOOoo, for those of us TOO far away to help in a direct way, that assistance is your little way of helping. Please do NOT feel bad acepting it!

Warm regards,
Larry


Cindi    Posted 08-26-2004 at 11:07:17       [Reply]  [No Email]
Well....then on behalf of my family...we thank you all. (smile)


You are MOST welcome,    Posted 08-26-2004 at 18:37:19       [Reply]  [No Email]
of course!!
:-)
:-)


Should have added,    Posted 08-26-2004 at 18:40:52       [Reply]  [No Email]
That help could not have been given to a NICER person than you!
So it is gladly given!


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