Saturday, December 18, 2004

Facing the Beast

Brrrr! The farmhouse was VERY cold when we woke up this morning. The temperature outside went down to –24 last night and the fire was pretty low when AC got up at 7:30 to put another log in the furnace, so the air in the house was a tad on the cool side to say the least! I got up around 8:00 and it was still only 59 in here. I made coffee, puttered about in the kitchen for awhile and checked the thermostat again. Hmmmm it was now reading 58. Not good to be going in that direction. Maybe it would take awhile for the fan to come on and heat things up, so I continued to work away in the kitchen. Still not feeling any heat I checked the thermostat again - yikes, 57! Time to take some action. AC had been up late reading last night, so he was still sleeping. I had to the face the monster in the basement all by myself. Oh dear!

It is such an old yucky cellar and I hate to go down there. I have no idea how old the farmhouse is, but let me just say it is VERY old and the cobwebs down there seem to have been there since day one! The stairs are steep and narrow and the ceiling low. I darn’t look around me when I go down there. It is best not to know what is just above one’s head or next to one’s shoulder. I have found it prudent just to look straight ahead and focus on the task in front of me, then hightail it up the stairs as fast as I can, chased all the way up by giant spiders and other ghastly things I am sure are right on my tail. Never look back, just run up the stairs and close the door quickly behind you. Gives me shivers up and down my spine just like when I was a kid being chased up the old basement stairs at home after I had gathered potatoes for dinner out of the sack at the bottom of the stairs.

Anyway, I had to brave the basement this morning, so down I went into the depths. Ugh!

It was to struggle to get the furnace door open, but I finally did it and saw two little logs barely winning the battle to burn. I moved them around to get air flowing past them and they burst into flame. Ok, now we were in business. I needed another log to put on the fire. Nothing for it but to bravely venture into a dark corner at the far end of the basement in search of a piece of wood. The pile was stacked neatly along the wall, but it was too dark to see clearly, so I couldn’t tell if spiders were lurking under the wood or not. I just had to grit my teeth and put my hand down and grab a piece and of wood. Shiver!! I held it as firmly as I could with mostly just my finger tips and rushed back to the furnace. Now, how to get it in the furnace and position it without burning my hand? I was sure spiders were, at that very moment, crawling up the wood and about to reach my hand and I wanted to get rid of it quickly. I braved the flames and put my hand in as far as I dared and balanced the log on the other two already blazing in there. Ah, mission accomplished. I was the hero of the hour, and it felt good.

The first visit to the basement was by far the worst, but since then I have made three more trips down into the dreaded “ dark hole”. Yay for me! AC is up now, but I really should know how to tend the fire, so I have made myself put more logs in the fire. I must admit that each trip gets easier, and I found an old pair of work gloves to wear to protect my hands against the vicious spiders so I am all set. I still don’t look up or around when I am down there, but I am getting the job done and that is what is important.

It feels good to face your fear and do it anyway. I hope any fear you encounter today goes up in flames and is nothing but ashes after you have faced it.

Sending you toasty warm greetings from a cozy farmhouse this morning.

1 comment:

Butterfly said...

Such a scary basement. Good for you for facing it. It ain't easy.