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  • The Scrivener

Diary Entry: JANUARY 22, 2023

Updated: Mar 23, 2023

When I woke up, the city water connection to my RV trailer was frozen. There is a reason that the hose is not properly insulated but that’s another long, sad, boring story. I knew the water would be off; the city water hose had been blocked by ice before I went to bed the night before. After it had frozen, the temperature just kept dropping. I knew from experience that it would not thaw until nine o’clock the next morning at the earliest. In the event, it was already nine o’clock and it had still not thawed.

Boondocking on Michigan State Drive

I had a gallon jug of drinking water sitting in the bath and my one liter Nalgene bottle in the refrigerator; there was also a one liter bottle of water in my back pack and a one liter bottle of water in the car; so, a total of 6.8 liters. Hell that’s almost enough for a bath.

I had to use some of the water in the jug to flush the Thetford commode. You can’t have fecal matter just lying around in the hacienda; you have to draw the line somewhere. After that, there wasn’t enough water left in the jug to shave with; so, I cleaned my teeth and made do with that.

So then I grabbed two energy bars from the cupboard and ate one of them with a cup of tea. After that I headed out of the door for my (almost) daily walk three times round the trail at Airport Park in Douglas.

I climbed into the XTerra and headed south on Kings Highway, down towards Arizona 80.

It was a breathtakingly beautiful morning, with the flat scrubland rolling out to the mountains at the edge of the world, under a cloudless blue sky tinted slightly grey by the residual morning mist. The sun was warm enough to take the edge off the chill, and there was no wind worth mentioning.

The people who live on Kings Highway usually wave to each other as they drive in opposing directions. Round about mile marker 2 up from Arizona 80 I saw a white SUV coming north towards me. I made the mandatory wave. That’s where you straighten the fingers of your right hand without taking it off the steering wheel. As the SUV went past I realized it was a squad car from the county sheriff’s department. Not sure I would have waved if I’d known that. Those guys hit me with a $350 speeding ticket three years ago. It was a righteous bust after a fashion, even if I only sped up to finish overtaking a truck and trailer and avoid getting creamed by the oncoming traffic. $350 is just greedy.

I bought a bag of ice at the gas station. Put it in the cooler in the back seat of the truck in preparation for transporting food to Roger’s for a potluck dinner. Then I did my 1.5 miles around Airport Park and came home. I said a single iteration of The Lord's Prayer before turning on the kitchen faucet. When you lose water or power, you get a gnawing feeling that civilization’s gone to hell, and that you’re going to die of thirst or frostbite, whichever happens first. But the hose had thawed and the water trickled sweetly into the sink. So I said a second iteration of The Lord Prayer in gratitude. I’m not in an especially religious phase at the moment, but even if you’re not entirely sure who you’re talking to, it never hurts to say thank you when you’ve just been delivered from evil. (For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever and ever, amen).


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