Thursday, February 14, 2019

Pour It Slow: Time to "Hunker Down"

Folks in Wyoming are used to a "storm slammin'" or two (or several!) during the Winter months. I can rightfully say I've adapted to the weather changes again, even after a 30-year absence, and I did miss the seasonal changes...a real, defining "Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter"...and even though some here would say I'm crazy for not zipping up my coat, or wear gloves or mittens, I just laugh and say, "Isn't this great?" Of course, they also don't know that they keep the station at what feels like 100 degrees, so...yeah, there's that!

But Californians aren't used to the weather they're getting right now. High winds, flooding, a good snow dumpin' I look at Facebook posts by my friends, by CalTrans, CHP and other news channels, it reminds me of my time in Pioneer, where if we didn't have a good few cords of wood for our stove split well ahead of time, Winter would've been mighty cold! I remember sitting in the living room, watching the flames rage in the stove as the snow would fall and the temps drop outside.  Fortunately, we had a full house generator, but when gas prices were near $5/gallon, it was sure a hit on the ol' pocketbook. Still, I cherish the memories of my home in the El Dorado forest, and hope that all my friends are safe and sound and warm.

So what do you do if (and when) the power goes out, or the roads are too bad to travel? Since being back home, the power has only gone out once, and that was for just a little over an hour. My phone is always on the charger, but I do have a landline as well. I have plenty of candles. So what I usually do is: Clean. Wash the dishes. Find a nice warm blanket and read a book. Or...I make a French press coffee, go over to my folks' place (who have a generator), pop popcorn and practice my shots on the pool table!

I have boxes filled with sheet music that were gifted to me by friends and family over the years. I sometimes sit in the middle of my disheveled music room (that I've been avoiding for months)...and read through the music. It's like stepping into a time machine...

I take out my recorders and practice, trying to get the right fingering for a good pitch and tone. It's not easy, especially since I have perfect pitch (a blessing and a curse)...but one can only try to master "Scarborough Fair" and "Danny Boy" until the lights come on. Hey, I didn't say I was any good, I'm just saying that I'm "practicing". LOL

Perhaps the thing I love the most about "hunkerin' down" when the wind blows and the snow falls is, well...sleeping. I surely don't get enough of it. I know most of you know me as a real upbeat, positive, energetic, super caffeinated person, but...I'm also only human. At some point, my brain needs to shut off and I need to just "chill". Not a problem here in Wyoming, but figuratively-speaking, I often just need time. Time to relax, regroup and refocus.

Music and writing. Two things that really don't need electricity to do. So if you find yourself "hunkerin' down"...break out that instrument. Put that pen to paper. Put that brush to canvas. Light that candle and start at that bookmark.

Because life doesn't end if the Internet is down...maybe it will begin!

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