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Monday, December 28, 2015

Too stressed to blog

Day before yesterday I left CMO. It was almost 80° there. Not knowing if we'd get any moisture, I left the drip on under the cottonwood tree. Then yesterday, while in town, I heard on the radio that it was going to get down to 14° last night. I worried that with the drip on, meaning the pump electricity was on, the pressure in the line might cause a pipe to break. Not likely, but what if??? With a pipe broken the pump would pump until the tank was empty. So I braved the blizzard and icy roads to drive down there just to turn off the power to the pump.

My pickup wouldn't make it up the big hill, so I walked the last half mile. I think, in hindsight, I should have loaded the bed with rocks and it might have made it. The north wind was brisk and the air cold. I can't stay in cold water or cold air for long or my bronchial tubes spasm shut. So I was soon gasping for air as I approached the oasis. I just turned off the power breaker and headed back to my pickup. Facing into the wind I took off my warm jacket and covered my head with it, hoping to get some warm air into my lungs.

I would have liked to top off the seed feeder and brushed the snow off the hummingbird feeders while I was there, but didn't dare chance it. By the time I got back toward Alpine the border patrol checkpoint had closed down. Soon the area highways were closed as well. It was another hour before I could breathe normally. I took a few photos to share here but was still too stressed to blog last night.


Turns out it didn't get near that cold last night either. I checked the bubble-wrap blanket in the rock tank. Even way at the bottom of the tank the wind messed it up so I'm going to have to do something if I intend to fill the tank with water. Haven't figured out what though. When I try to weigh the cover down it sinks underwater. If it doesn't float it's not preventing evaporation. I had tried to stabilize the cover with plastic bottles with a little water inside them. Not very effective as you can see. I wouldn't have bought the cover but someone whose opinion I trust thought it would work for me. I usually am more qualified to know what will work for me, and what won't. I'll eventually get the problem solved. I had just hoped to do it inexpensively. That's probably not an option.

Big Bend would be so agreeable if it wasn't for these bad northers.

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