Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Time Runs Short When the Well Runs Dry

Apparently, every once in a while I need a good, swift kick in the pants to remind me that time is a luxury we should never take for granted.  I've been very fortunate lately to experience a break from my usual hassles and fiascoes, so I got lulled into a false sense of security that I can actually plan out my day and follow through on it without any extraneous events throwing me for a loop.

Monday night I fed the horses and noticed that some water troughs were getting low.  It was cold and I didn't want to get wet or stay out any longer than necessary, so I told myself I'll clean and fill the water troughs in the morning.  However, morning came and my neighbors' dogs were barking, snapping, and snarling at me, and it was just too early to be hassled by dogs, so I went back inside the house telling myself I'd deal with the water troughs later when my neighbor goes somewhere and puts the dogs away in their kennel.

I started a load of laundry, wrote some blog posts over coffee, and did a handful of other things.  Then the alarm went off.  It was an alarm I had never heard before and I couldn't tell what room is was coming from.  Memories flooded back of the time a smoke alarm went off to warn me that the batteries were dying, and it was so loud that I couldn't tell which smoke alarm was complaining.  The dog was having a complete panic attack, running around the house breaking things and pissing all over the carpet.  I started ripping smoke detectors off walls, tearing batteries out of them, and still couldn't get the beeping to stop.  That day was complete hell, mainly because of the dog losing her mind.

I feared this may be another smoke alarm incident and decided that I was going to beat the crap out of it with a broom handle, if that were the case.  However, this alarm was different and seemed to be coming from the washing machine.  The LCD screen did not indicate that anything was wrong.  The machine was just beeping, and the dog was quickly launching into one of her psycho canine neurotic implosions.  Someone needs to open a mental hospital for dogs, because mine is a perfect candidate for some long term therapy and heavy sedatives.  

Then I turned on a faucet to wash my hands and nothing came out.


I ran over to the washing machine and this time it had shut itself down and was showing the message, "NO WATER".

I wanted to cry.  This makes the third time since we've moved into this house that our well pump system has broken... and two of those times were on holidays when the pump company was closed.  The first time happened on the 4th of July.  We went without water for two days.  Considering that it was in the triple-digits, I stunk bad.  The second time was a few days before this past Thanksgiving, and now it happened on New Years Eve.


I was waiting for Lostine to start a bout with colic too, simply because it's a holiday.  We're not safe yet, though because New Years Day is a holiday also.  I'll have to keep a close eye on her.

Anyway, I flipped the breaker switches for the pumps, but that didn't fix it.  I picked up the phone to call my husband to see if he had any other ideas, but then I remembered that he left his mobile phone at home and I didn't have his work number.  Right then his mobile phone started letting off alarms for servers going down at the office or something in chorus with the washing machine alarm, and the dog completely flipped out.  Ever seen a chicken running around with its head cut off?  That's what Midge looks like when she has a panic attack.

I tried opening the washing machine door, but I guess for some security measures, they programmed it to lock itself while the alarm was going off.  I was about ready to take a baseball bat to the thing.  Unless my house is on fire, I do not want to hear any alarms... period!  This world is filled with way too much stress, and having multiple machines screaming at you is enough to push any human over the edge, none-the-less a fearful dog.  I finally pushed the correct buttons on the washing machine to shut it off and unlock the door, and then I stuffed my husband's phone in his sock drawer so that I could call the well pump company on my phone and see if I could sweet talk them into coming out on a holiday.... AGAIN.

The guy said they were just closing for the day, but asked where I live.  He said, "I was just at your house a few weeks ago!  Everything should be fine."

"That's what I said," I said.

He said, "Well, I'm close, so I'll be over in a second."

He was literally here within a couple of minutes and discovered which part failed.  I can't remember what it's called at the moment because I'm brain dead.  Essentially, some electrical box fried itself.  He said I was lucky, because if what he originally thought was wrong had broken, he wouldn't have been able to get the part until Thursday or Friday because the suppliers were closed for the holidays.  He did, however, have the part I needed back at his office.  He was able to fix it quickly.

I told him that anytime he gets a call on a holiday, he should automatically assume it is me.  He said it wasn't my fault.  I walked away, and then his phone rang and I heard him yell, "(Insert favorite expletive here)!  Why do people's pumps always have to break on the holidays?"

I feel for him.  He's always having to play the role of a superhero who saves the day when people run out of water.  I was thankful he made an extra effort for me and cut his holiday short to help.  It pays to be extra nice to certain people, and one of them is your local well pump repairman.  I'll be sure to bake cookies for the next holiday and have some ready for him.

The moral of the story is to always fill your horse's water troughs the second you see them getting low.  Do not procrastinate.  Do not let your neighbors' dogs chase you off.  Do not assume you can "always do it later."  Had he not had the part that needed to be replaced, I would have been hard pressed to find enough water for my horses because two troughs had less than an inch of water and one was bone dry.  One neighbor gets water out of a tank he keeps on the back of a flatbed trailer.  He purchases that water each month, so I'd hate to ask any favors from him.  Our other neighbors are just too far away and it would require dozens of hoses to run water from their houses to the barn.  I suspect I would have been filling buckets in town and pouring them into the troughs.

Now I just need to make it through the night while Midge loses her mind over a few pops and bangs from fireworks set off by partiers ringing in the New Year.  May the new year be filled with lots of water and thingamabobs that work.  That is my wish.


Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Ugh. It turned out to be more than a few pops and bangs. There were public fireworks displays going on all around my house. I could see three shows just from my back porch. Midge had to be sedated and locked up in her cage, and while trying to sleep I kept dreaming that I was driving around aimlessly with Midge in the backseat searching for some quiet place where we can go to sleep.

Cheryl Ann said...

HA~I drove hubby home from our son's birthday/New Year's celebration (he was too drunk to drive) last night. We got home at 11:33. He was passed out by 11:50! Yes, why DO things always break on holidays?
~~Cheryl Ann~~

ellie k said...

Midge needs some doggy ear plugs for the holidays. We have fireworks around us on every holiday.

Sam said...

We have been living with a well for over thirty years - been there! If you ever get super panicky or desperate let me know. I've still got pals that haul water. We can at least get your horse troughs filled.


Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Christine - Thanks. That's really sweet. Of course, I would pay them for their time and the water.

Sam said...

No worries! All of us out here have had issues at one time. We sort of all help each other out. Just give me a call or text if you need any help. :)