Monday, February 26, 2024

C. Stroup: If it’s not one thing, it’s the weather!

C. Stroup
C. Stroup

For the last couple of months I’ve kept you abreast of our woes surrounding efforts to obtain COVID vaccines. And most of that information has been a bit on the negative side. So after being such a Debbie Downer let me shine a little light on the subject.

After all my fretting and stewing about how awful it would be to have to go to the Texas Motor Speedway for my shot, it turned out to be quite a positive experience. Who knew? The folks that directed the cars to the right lanes with hand signals and nods and patience ~ were a lifeline. And every volunteer along the way was upbeat and courteous. The crew included police, military and civilians…all performing at the top of their class and happy to help.

I’ve had many shots over the course of my many years. And I detest needles. I even grimace when I see pictures of people getting shots. But honestly, the lad in the army fatigues that administered the vaccine to me was a pro! Totally pain free! Couldn’t wait to go back for my second dose…well maybe that’s a bit of a stretch.

Seems like I always find something to fuss about. Well, February 14, 15, 16, 2021 were among three of the things that caused me to fume the most. Living in Texas since 1985 has me spoiled when it comes to warm weather. Even those outrageous dog days of summer when the thermostat blows its top, I can live with that. It’s easier to cool off than it is to warm up. So when temperatures dipped lower than the pudgy guy in the Kroger commercials, I wasted no time gearing up. Although somewhat bulky, three sweaters seemed to do the trick, and this was inside the house. Brrrrr, I get a chill just thinking about it! Despite the cold, things began running smoothly ~ until they didn’t. In fact, things quit running all together. I’d never experienced a rolling power outage before, never even heard of one. Yet much to my chagrin a sporadic blackout was about to begin!

We’ve had the power go out in our house for as long as 4 hours straight. But once whatever was the culprit got fixed, that was it. This business of the electric being absent for an unknown period of time and then present for a much lesser number of minutes really frosted me. I simply didn’t have the time to keep setting the clocks! Thank goodness for the ones familiar with the Energizer Bunny. (And thank goodness for battery-operated candles and the old fashioned wax ones as well.) However, it wasn’t long before my clock watching obsession became the least of my worries.

Can’t tell you how many times I flipped on the light as I entered the bathroom. Not to play favorites, any doorway I darkened would be just that. There was nothing to do…couldn’t throw in a load of laundry, sure couldn’t write an article for The Gazette, tough to read a book with a flashlight, of course TV was out of the question so who cares if you couldn’t nuke some popcorn. I found myself roaming the dark halls aimlessly, for what seemed like an eternity. Then with the flickering of lights and the sounds of the PCs rebooting there was a glimmer of hope. Could it be that the time was nigh for our turn to be blessed with power? Even if ever so brief we were grateful for any relief!

Then there was Mother Nature’s contribution to the frigid temps with her phenom of snow. Many considered the white stuff a nuisance. I loved it! Well, I loved it for a little while. I loved watching my grandchildren experience snow for the first time in their young lives. Living in Texas they may be old and gray before it ever passes this way again!

Most of my memories of the snow have melted away.

And it would appear that spring is making its rounds these days.

I’m quite content if that is a fact,

Though pulling weeds will be killing my back!

Then summer will be here in the blink of an eye,

It will get so hot…soooo hot, oh my!

But I’ll always remember what a blackout can do

Making hot temps much better from my point of view!

C. Stroup
C. Stroup
Cindy Stroup is a Double Oak resident and has been contributing to The Cross Timbers Gazette for over 30 years. Read her column each month in The Cross Timbers Gazette newspaper.

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