I had a very odd thought this afternoon. I had dug out my bag of winter gloves and hats, stored in the rodent-resistant shed, so that I could add a couple of watch caps I’d bought and some gloves that feralfae sent me. And I…
Wait, I need a second to wrap my mind around this…
…I almost – not quite – looked forward to dragging it all out again for winter.
Okay. I know. We’re in (what I sincerely hope proves to be) the summer’s big heat wave, and life sucks. It’ll be better by Monday. Monsoon will start, I’ll stop bitching about heat and start bitching about lightning and mud. I know this. Cold sounds good right now. I’d stand in front of an open refrigerator if I weren’t conditioned not to.
Last winter was really kind of…comfortable.
Yes. Yes. Last winter was freakishly mild. True.
Even if that hadn’t been the case, it still would have been far more comfortable than previous winters. Because I’m better equipped to deal with cold, now, than I have been since moving to the gulch.
And it occurred to me, just then, how much those five winters in that little RV had cost me. I disliked winter when I lived in Michigan, but winters weren’t a seven-month ordeal. I didn’t fall into a funk in October and not come out of it till May. Like I used to do here.
“I hate winter.” It used to be a TUAK mantra, remember? The ice on the windows, hell, the ice in the sink, the frozen fingers and toes all day, the layers of sweatshirts, the water that stopped running in November. The anxiety over heating fuel vs. cooking fuel.
And I moved into the Lair in November 2011 in high hopes of more comfortable living, with the absurdly dysfunctional electrical plant and the hopelessly porous walls and the laughable free home-made wood stove that didn’t work – and then there was that chimney fire the very next February…
Wow. No wonder I hated winter.
But the physical plant has incrementally improved so much since then that it’s almost like living in a professionally built-to-code house. The walls are wrapped, the floor is insulated, the wood stove draws, the woodshed bulges. If all goes well, there will even be an actual bedroom with an actual bed and – for those unusually cold nights – an actual propane furnace. Decadent luxury!
I’ve been here eleven winters, and I’m on my eleventh summer. And – could it be? – that I’m finally
starting to get it right?