City Sidewalks, Busy Sidewalks

One of the first things I noticed about Saranac Lake in the Winter was those nifty little sidewalk snow plows they have. A little mini plow the width of the sidewalk. Never saw such a thing. In the city, each resident was responsible for the sidewalk out front, and if you didn’t shovel it, you got a ticket. Merry Christmas from New York City!

Hey, look! Snow dog! We’re all out in the snow! For us humans, most of our outside time is spent shoveling. We’re looking at five days of snow, probably a foot or more so far. We like the entire width and depth of our driveway cleared, so we’ve been out there each day, sometimes twice. As I’ve said before, I think it’s fun. Although I have to admit – Sometimes, maybe once a week, when it’s a night shovel and I am lifting the last scoop full, I start to think twice about shoveling a 25 x 50′ driveway by hand. But usually I’m just smiling. It’s a sickness.

In other news … it’s Christmas! Between community-fun-friendly activities and work activities, my Winter comes in like a lion (as they say). Truth be told, I bailed on playing in the orchestra for The Messiah. I realized that in all of the month of December, there were only five days that did not have something marked on the calendar. Something had to go. I was doubling a part anyway, and learning the music would have been a time problem. So, I bailed. But, now I know what level of activity I can handle for the holiday season. Of course, I’m still playing in the orchestra for the Holiday Concert at Will Rogers (this Saturday at 7:30pm), and all the super neat stuff at St. Luke’s – morning meditations, Christmas Eve, Sunday holiday services. And I’ll play in the Winter Carnival concert. More on all that later.

Inside the ol’ tin can, we’re warm and cozy, but we have the usual Winter water problems. Often, the water is fine. But depending on the direction of the wind, the day of the week, the phase of the moon, and how far below zero we are, lines freeze up. Usually just part. And usually not this early. At any rate, something’s frozen in a weird place I can’t get to. I’m considering two plans based on go-another-route-because-it’s-just-going-to-happen-again.

Plan A is a more advanced version of what we have previously called the Laura Ingalls Wilder System. Maybe put a heated 40 gallon cistern in a corner inside, or a stock tank outside the door with a heater. Fill the cistern (tank) each morning from the well. Keep a giant pot on the stove over a low flame for hot water (à la the Wilders). Maybe something with a spout above the sink for washing dishes. I know it sounds crazy, but believe it or not, we’re used to it.

Plan B is a little more involved. Most of the plumbing and the cold water lines are inside the “basement,” under the bedroom where the furnace and pump are. Those never freeze. Never-ever. But the hot water and kitchen lines run under a section of floor that I can’t get to. Those are the lines that give us trouble. I could potentially take the lines out and relocate them to inside the heated area. However, re-plumbing half an RV is a huge project.

Now, where did I put that giant stock pot?



Filed under adirondacks

10 responses to “City Sidewalks, Busy Sidewalks

  1. corky wolf

    be careful. steam does a lot of damage to an RV.

  2. We always stay on top of the moisture thing . We have a dehumidifier and we keep the exhaust fans running a lot of the time.

  3. Keith

    I think I mentioned this before, but a 1-2 gallon lawn sprayer with an extended hose makes a great make shift shower when filled with warm water from the stove. Something like this: Just take the wand off for maneuverability in the shower.

  4. Patricia

    Ever think of using one of those heating blankets (not the big blankets but the warming lap blankets) and every night putting it on high and laying it over the area where your pipes are in the kitchen… don’t know if it would work but it just might… doesn’t use much electricity – I had one for the cats and they loved it – and one evening I found it on the floor. when I picked it up and walked over the area it had been laying on, I was amazed! It was hot and the setting was only on medium… They cost about $39 at most CVS or Walgren’s or can be purchased through

  5. Unfortunately, it wouldn’t work. The pipes in question are quite literally under the floor and additionally, under the refrigerator. No way to get to them.

  6. Well you could always rig up something involving manure…let’s see, pile a lot of fresh stuff under the RV, surround with bales of straw to block the wind and let the heat rise. Then in the spring, move the RV over a few feet and plant your new garden. Mulch with the left over straw.

    (I’m joking of course!)

  7. themac

    Freezing problems already? It just seems too early in the season for these types of problems. Hopefully this will be your last winter in the ‘ol can.

  8. themac

    Also, that nifty plow IS indeed awesome. Except where there’s a road sign AND a building – my work building in SL gets damaged every single year. OY!

  9. Pamela

    I saw those pavement ploughs in operation in Ottawa one OCTOBER when I was there on holiday a few years ago. Here in the UK it is cold, cold,cold. Here people tend not to clear the snow as last year there was talk of being sued if you cleared it and someone still fell and injured themselves! Not too much snow in the part of Cumbria where I live at the moment, on the west side of country but it has certainly made work complicated as we deal with temporary adaptations of vehicles for disabled drivers so lots of jobs postponed as hire cars snowed in and stock in the wrong places – thanks Fed Ex!

  10. We have been having to carry water to the animals because its too cold to use the waterhoses. But I did ask Santa to bring you a giant stock pot. LOL

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