THE COLDEST WINTER IN VERMONT SINCE 1906
My father said that. He also said he should have had us fill the oil tank at our house before winter made it IMPOSSIBLE to get a truck close enough. He said back in September that there was plenty of oil for one winter.
And then my husband built huge fires just because he could and burned a good cord and a half too early.
All of this led to being out of oil more than two months ago and then out of firewood a month ago. The only available wood was up beside the field, buried in a snow bank and too big to fit in the stove. My father splits it one sled load at a time and I pile it all in a deep sled and drag it by a rope to the house. This is how I try to keep the house at 68 degrees if I can.
On this particular day he was laying the electric line to the sugarhouse through the snow and wanted me to take three trips down with wood so that I wouldn’t have to snowshoe over the line and risk cutting it with my snowshoes.
Trip ONE went well. The sled would start sliding quickly at times and I would jump aside and let it get ahead for a ways. Got to the house without losing a piece!
Trip TWO was a little more difficult. It kept sliding onto the backs of my snowshoes but I was able to push it off and keep moving.
Trip THREE was embarrassing. Dad was done so he was following me. There was an extra sled up there that needed to be taken back to the house so I grabbed that with one hand. The sled overtook me again and I did a very ungraceful fall sideways into the snow, landing on top of the other sled and bending it in half. I didn’t need to turn around to hear him laughing. Then there is a hard right just before the house into the dog run I had Nick shovel out (another blog post for another time). I tipped the sled over, lost most of the wood, got my snowshoes stuck turning around, and fell over again.
It’ll be a while before he lets me borrow so much as a shovel.