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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Late Night Pondering

Some times you just have too many thoughts rolling through your head to even lay down, let alone sleep. I am having one of those nights. It's nice to be able to write down thoughts when ever I feel the need, and nicer still to have a delete and edit function.

The good neighbor and I rolled a 1,200 lb bale to the cows today. My husband was ill yesterday and we didn't get to it. My poor ladies were hungry and I had to get it to them. The good neighbor and I struggled with it, stupid flat spots on those bales. We were sliding in the ice and snow as we lifted and pushed, twisted and pulled. It took all our strength and breath, and time to get it down. The ladies were grateful when it was finished. It's nice to have more than one husband. Ha! I jest, but there are times when it feels like I have 3 husbands around here, luckily only one demands my wifely duties. The other two are happy to help, and seem to trust me with their secrets/issues and friendship. But I guess I have always been a manly lady. . .ladies man. . . um tomboy. . . hot chick with lots of male friends, yeah, that's the ticket.

I was able to keep my house around 60F, outside it was 15F. I really shouldn't complain. I was just watching the news and a 93 year old man died because his power was turned off by the electric company. When they found his body, the also found his bill, cash was paper clipped to it. And when I went to look up the story I found forum after forum of people saying awful things, like he chose to not pay. It's cold, few people seem to care about neighbors anymore, and the government has made so many laws that many of us have no choice in how we can heat our homes. We are forced to rely on 1 company for our heating needs, we are not able to afford to be off the grid or provide for ourselves. More things like this will be happening, and not just to the old. Many able body men are unable to get work, no fault of their own. welfare and unemployment are overburdened, and I have heard states talking about cutting their welfare programs because of economic issues. I am glad my father lived with me. I have one elderly neighbor here, I will be sure to check in on them more often. If I can help anyone with the little I have, I will be the better person for it.

I went and checked in with my mother. Oh, I talk to her often, but she hasn't been posting on her blog lately. She hasn't had the access, and she is now back on line. The title of her post could be seen on my sidebar and it caught my attention. The content of the post was the warning I had heard most my life. Now I have not done my own research on any of this, the post itself touched on what many of us are feeling. What so many people here in America are feeling and find their way to my blog. They want to survive what is coming or could be coming. And even this post I am talking about isn't our deepest fears of our future, this post is draped in velvet. I can't help you survive, I can only help make your choices easier. I don't know if I could survive what is predicted, I can only hope that my choices are right. I think that is our biggest fear. What if I am wrong? I made a bad choice by buying a mobile home. I made a bad choice thinking we could only be more successful. I made a bad choice by not building a home sooner. I made a bad choice by not saving more money. But I have made more good choices than bad. I made a good choice to move away from towns. I made a good choice in buying the animals I have. I made a good choice to meet my neighbors. I made a good choice by writing this blog. I have much to be thankful for. I have the knowledge and the skills to survive what they throw at me.

I talked with the neighbor across the road. She had no idea what we have been going through here. Funny how sometimes it is easier to talk to complete strangers about your problems than it it to friends. She was astounded to hear how bad things have gotten. We have always done so much better than them. I shrugged, it's life. She was upset I didn't contact her about it all, but what could she have done. She didn't know, but that wasn't the point. He daughter-in-law's house will be put up for auction in a few weeks. They have the same bank we do, and they went through he same mess we did. The bank wouldn't work with them and told them that a quick sell was all they could do. Sound familiar? I wonder where all the tax money that our government gave them went to? Quick sell didn't work, auction is their last chance before foreclosure. It looks like they will be our new neighbors across the way.

My hens haven't been laying, nor have my good neighbors. The neighbor across the way however has more than enough and she is willing to share. My good neighbor and I have no clue why our birds aren't laying. There are no shells to say that something is eating them, maybe our thief is back. I fear theft will get worse.

I guess that's really all I have been thinking about. These things keep me awake, not all the time, my issues change with the day. It is almost midnight, and 10F outside. Maybe I should go curl up with my husband and think about the fact that I have been so lucky to be with him for 12 years, and that our children are healthy, smart, creative and curious (we are working on polite, having manners, and what is acceptable to talk about in mixed company) that I still have electricity, and food. That I still have a home and that I can be in the company, even if it is via Internet, of some wonderful, thoughtful, extraordinary people.

Do me a favor, please. When you get up tomorrow, before you head off to work, go check on a neighbor. Make sure they are ok. There are a few of us out there that don't like talking about it, but love the company.


Leon Basin said...

Hey, how is it going? Hope all is well.

Phelan said...

Things are ok. Always could be better. And you?

SkippyMom said...

The story about the elderly gentleman made me cry, for him, four you...for us...just for America in general.

I can't believe that the electric company would turn it off in this weather...even our gas company here in VA won't do that...they wait until the temp it up. [think March/April]

sigh...your advice is very sage - thank you Phelan. I hope it continues to be okay.

Zan Asha said...

Yeah, I heard about the story of the heating company and that poor old man, and was angry as the devil. I also saw the comments--I can't figure it had anything to do other than some poor old guy who couldn't get out in the cold, or couldn't ask for help. It's really a crying shame.

I hope you are doing ok, Miss. Thanks for always sharing the advice :)

HermitJim said...

Morning hubby is poud to have you as a helpmate. I was moved by the sencerity and caring I felt in your post.

In the rough times ahead, I think that all of us will be needing our friends and neighbors more and more, both off the net and on...

Proud to have you as a net friend...stay warm!

Melissa ~ Wife to 1, Mom to 5 said...

I read a lot of blogs and some of them are survivalists and preppers. I never could figure out why they felt the way they did... that this country and the way we live is going to come to a screaching halt. You mom's post explained it very well. I heard a speech about 3 years ago in which the lady spoke of the Depression our country would encounter by 2010. She encouraged all of us to pay off debt and save as much money as we could. I don't know if money will be the answer. I see bartering as a viable alternative as well as stockpiling. I think I'm going to increase the garden by 50% more and go ahead with that order of 25 cornish rocks now and another 25 in the summer. Spring cannot get here soon enough. Thanks for your midnight thoughts.

Janelle said...

Thank you for the reminder. It's funny how we've lost that desire to help one another. If you ever need anything, please do call.

Miss April aka SilverSunbeam said...

Thanks for the, erm... great? helpful? I dunno... I guess "real" is the best word for this post.

Good thoughts toward you and yours.


Glad to hear VA companies are so enlightened as we Just moved there! Back in NM it's illegal to turn off power / heating from Nov to March and they can't force you to pay a bill in the winter if you went into it up-to-date. Lots of very poor people!

Kymber said...

i always check on my neighbours...but thanks for the reminder!

Lacey said...

I have days where I feel numb and calloused to the whole 'economic downfall' and such but then I read posts like this and I remember that ignorance is not bliss. We are far from being untouched by it all as my husbands job hangs by a thread and food in the cupboard is enough to last us the week. I appreciate the reminder and I am resolved to be more mindful. I almost gave into renting a townhouse (with NO yard) but remembered that garden and chicken space is necessary and I'll hold out till I find the right place! Oh and I so agree about being 'neighborly', if anything good comes from these hard times, perhaps it will be that people will start being more community oriented and willing to lend a hand and be aware of those around them! Not to mention being more self reliant and eating more locally!

Becca said...

What I have always found strange is that the people that work for these companies that have no soul seem to lose their own soul all in the name of keeping a job. If I had to choose between leaving an old man in the cold and dark or being fired, I would take being fired. But, I also understand the person working to feed his/her family doing what they have to so they can keep feeding their family.

The people who said those awful things, most likely were speaking from a place of fear that they too could one day be where that old man was. I intend to switch to solar power and dump our electric grid as soon as possible. If we have to we will dig a well and get rid of the county water system as well. But, for now, Ill just be happy to find a decent chicken coop design that doesn't cost me an arm and a leg and to figure out how to garden despite my inablity to keep a house plant alive.

Im glad I found your blog. Maybe it will help keep me motivated to make the changes we need to.

white_lilly said...

What a great post with so many truths. We do need to be more concerning with our neighbours, friends and family. Everyboby will be doing it tough it every country and we should be willing to help those in need because you never know one day we could be in that predicament.

Melonie said...

This is a very well-written post. My husband and I have been trying the past few years (since we got married) to really attack debts and now we are ahead of the game compared to most of our friends. On the flip side, as military, our home doesn't belong to us. It's Uncle Sam's and he limits what we can store, grow, and feed here - as well as whom. No helping out the Sis in Law who could use a safer place to live; no having my elderly grandparents move in to make sure they are warm enough.

I'll be going over to your mom's blog - I suspect this post is going to be just as well written as yours.

It's nice to find like-minded folk. Even during the tough times we are ahead of the average herd of "sheeple" - hopefully we will be able to get our common sense out there and help others learn from our efforts and yes, our mistakes, to get things back on track again.

Robbyn said...

Love this took us far too long to meet our neighbors!

Anonymous said...

you are not alone, we are all feeling the pinch and trying to figure out what to do next. In our county there are only 24,000 people, and 2,000 are out of work, and many more have had their hours cut. Plus we are a big dairy county, and the milk prices dropped yet again It will get worse, but all we can do is the best we can and help others when possible

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