Freezing Over, Thawing Out

So the ice begins to set in.  The next few days are forecasted to bring a quarter inch of ice, then sleet, and finally some snow.  The old potbelly stove has already been burning wood for hours now, and before nightfall I will slightly open the faucets to let the cold water go drip, drip, drip, into the sink and tub.

Since the wood stove is the only source of heat, I will be getting up every three hours to put more wood on the fire.  Hopefully I have stockpiled enough dry wood to get through the next four days.

I hope for a few breaks in the weather tomorrow to get a few more tasks completed before Thanksgiving.  Waiting until the last minute is never a good idea for just about anything, except hooking a fish.

Living some distance away from a grocery store means having to stock up on food supplies; forgetting anything can be costly, especially when bad weather sets in.  Texas winters tend to bring more ice than snow, the first of which is extremely difficult to drive on no matter the type of road nor the type of vehicle.

I wonder sometimes how many people were able to live in the "now" in the distant past, back when not planning far ahead meant little food for the winter.  I read once that it takes several square miles here where I live to support a single human being wanting to survive only off the land via hunting and gathering.  Watching the families of animals over the years I have lived on this ranch I can see how that could be true. 

I feel very fortunate to live in the times I have lived in here in the United States of America, when food supplies at the grocery stores are more than abundant, when so many have at some point in their lives been able to own or lease some form of transportation, and have some type of roof over their head.  But I do fear for the future of this country, sometimes.

Living in this small, remote cabin has humbled me in many ways.  I no longer feel the desire to have that large mansion or fast car I thought I wanted at some point in my childhood.  I don't need shoes for every occasion; three pair (one pair for for my suit, one pair for jogging, and a pair of hiking boots for almost all occasions) suit me just fine.  It is amazing just how little one really needs as opposed to suggestive wants one can acquire living in the city.

But who knows. Maybe someday I will want to go water skiing again, or do the other things that require more than I currently have.  For now though, I think I'll keep it simple, and watch the ice freeze and thaw.