Ramblings from the Desert

The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either. ~Benjamin Franklin

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Location: New Mexico

Author of the urban fantasy novel, The Music of Chaos, and the paranormal romance, The Canvas Thief.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Like The Titanic, Only Drier

"Uh-oh," says my husband instead of the usual phone greeting. I have an aversion to phones, so I only call him at work if something exploded or someone is on fire.

"Houston, we have a moat," I say. "Icy moat."

A blast of Arctic air has oozed into the Albuquerque area--where's global warming when you need it?--and the worst thing possible has happened. Well, not worst. The worst thing would be the house burning down.

Several mobile homes in the area have gone up like roman candles. We don't have tornadoes in this part of the country. We do fire. Housing Darwinism: something has to curb the spread of cheap housing.

Nope, the Kirbys' have burst pipes.

Five minutes before, I hobbled into the kitchen. See in honor of the cold weather, my left knee swelled up to the size of a grapefruit. My right leg was eyeing the left and thinking all that padding looked nice and warm. By tomorrow, I'll have the Elephant Man's knees.

Mrrrrr! WTF? I looked around the kitchen and toward the backdoor. Opened it and groaned. Yep, the well pump had kicked on. I go through the possible scenarios: Flushed the toilet recently? No. Watering the lawn? No. Filling the pool? Don't have one. Midgets bathing on the lawn? I wish. Can't go wrong with midgets.

So I start to pile on the clothes, coats, coats, gloves, hat, sunglasses (cold and sunny)... The Greyhound hears me and comes running out of the bedroom, skinning tail waving like an epileptic snake.

"Happy, happy, happy. We're going for a walk." This crap has been going on all morning. Wind chill of 3 below zero, but the Hound thinks it's flipping Florida. It's only cold in the backyard in Dog Land.

I slicked off a glove and paused a beat. Nope, there's nothing for it. I bounced the glove off his skinny face: "Snap out of it!" The Hound, realizing the Bitch is in the building, slinked back to the bedroom.

Out into the bright sunlight and around the house. Water was shooting out of a burst faucet like a tiny Niagara Falls, only without all the fat, white newlyweds. Rat Dog had puttered out with me. She looked at me as though to say, "I'm not calling him. No thumbs."

Back in the house to deliver the good news and ask how to stop watering the brick pathway. The husband talks me through the problem, curses, and then I ring off.

Teeny problemo. No water until Hero gets home and fixes the problem. Suddenly I'm thirsty. I'm so parched I'm seeing mirages in the living room. All we have to drink is wine and cranberry juice. I'm Mexican and Russian; two races who consider booze a food group. I.e., I'm an alcoholic waiting to happen. Scratch the wine. And the cranberry juice is cold. Cold. I don't want nothing cold.

I want tea. I eye the dogs' water dishes. I mean, you gotta boil water for tea anyway?

No, I didn't do it. I sulked.

Can't even make Ramen fricking noodles. I opt for a popcorn lunch. About halfway through the bag, I realize the flaw in the plan.

Popcorn. Salty. Thirsty.



Graphics and Content Copyright © Patricia Kirby 2005