Hurricane Ike Relief

September 16, 2008
CoolestChicOnThePlanet Campfire Cooking

CoolestChicOnThePlanet Campfire Cooking

I was lazily sitting around at the CoolestSisSouthofMasonDixon’s house, our laptops hooked up to DSL, clickity-clacking away, when I received a distress call from my CowboyDoc. Seems Hurricane Ike roared through in the night down in the Ozarks and although all was safe, there was no power. Silly me, I forgot to leave the National Emergency Plan in plain sight so he could find it. Where are the candles, where are the candle holders, where are matches. What about water, do we have water anywhere, drinking or otherwise???? My guess is he already used both toilets and flushed.

My CoolestSisSouthofMasonDixon and I giggled, and chatted online at each other, yes, we ARE sitting next to each other, but it was something silly to do. Mind you we are both over 50, and to us this fad called internet highway is our toy. Anyway, I quietly assured him he had most of the necessities of life and told him I’d be home in the morning.

You see I am what you call A BoyScoutMother, not a den mother, just a mother, who is always prepared. I watch news for latest updates. If a storm is on the horizon, which I can actually watch coming in, from my high ridge ranch, I fill all my water containers, fill both bathtubs (for toilet flush water), get candles ready, bring in enough wood, if I need to cook in the fireplace, yum, and of course get the cloth diapers ready, just in case a baby in the neighborhood would need it. And the neighbors know, that i am always prepared, and that I can “Go Native”.

So Ike hits, I get home around noon, and the house looks all quiet, real quiet, no power. Seems it’s been out for over 24 hours already. I set up command central in the kitchen, where dishes are piled high and dirty, I forgot to tell him to use paper plates in cabinet, and then burn them as fire starters. Oh well, I go outside, it is clear but cool, and set up my “Camp Kitchen”. NeighborLady stopped by to ask if i wanted to go over to their cabins and put our refridge stuff in their fridges and shower. There are only three of us with no power, everyone else has power around us. No, I said, we’ll fair ok. She asks if I use the grill to cook, no, I said, can only grill on the grill, and I don’t have enough charcoal, end of grill season you know, but with all these trees and limbs down, it will make an nice camp cooking fire.

So I began cleaning out the refridge and freezer. Tip#1 If you put your food in coolers, it will save better, especially if your freezer is not full. Put frozen food on the bottom and refridge food on top. As the hours wane on, start cooking, you can alway refreeze cooked food. So I started the dutch oven, deer meat, and vegetables from refridge, slow cooking, saves the food for supper hour. About 30 minutes before eating, I mixed up a batch of cornbread in the cast iron skillet and gently set it in the coals. Then started the coffee pot.

Somehow, out here, near dusk, the modern reality of no power made no difference. It was a cool night, hot fire, good food, and quiet conversation under a blanket of the Almighty Stars with such brightness to light up the entire sky. The smell of a hickory fire, reminded CowboyDoc and I of the time we served as missionaries in Uganda, East Africa. We finished up supper, and I burned the plates to stoke up the fire, washed the few dishes with the huge kettle of water that I had steaming on the fire.

My CowboyDoc thanked me for the great hot meal, coming home to save him, and for being NativeAmerican and going back to my heritage. You see, while the kids were growing up, I used to do Heritage Days, where I, in all my beaded leather regalia would cook over an open fire, making stew in the belly of a cow which children imagined to be a buffalo, or deer whichever was in season, grilling steaks on a rock, baking potatoes in the coals, and the teachers and I would feast. The only thing I had was a bowie knife. All the rest of my tools were rocks, sticks, pieces of leather thong, grasses. No pots, pans, silverware, dishes, or other fineries of modern times. I even wove the baskets my food was kept in and what I ate off.

I will pray for the survivors of Ike and only wish they could know what I know. Working together, we can all survive. God provided us with everything we need right here, our minds being the greatest, but don’t get me wrong, I really do love POWER!!!!!ON!!!!!

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Global Warming Relief

September 9, 2008

People are constantly telling the “CoolestChicOnThePlanet” that getting old is not fun. Well, maybe I am there, although I still have the mind of a twenty year old, my body is sure not keeping up.

A friend emailed me today that the AARP Forum finally gave us a great tip on how to get the wrinkles out of our face. FINALLY,  some great information that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, as all those vita-lifty thingys do. They said simply don’t wear a bra, the weight is sure to pull those crows feet wrinkles out.

While grocery shopping the other day, the reality of getting old set in. First off, two weeks ago I had some minor surgery on my inner thigh. Nothing grave, but I am hoping he took some cellulite with it. But it has made sitting, walking, and heaven’s sake running more difficult than usual. I now walk, like I rode the Chisolm Trial from Kansas to California all in one day. If I kick on my spurs, I don’t look out of place down here where hanging out at the feed mill in spurs is a daily deal for most. But going to the grocery store is such an ordeal, trying to walk, with the help of a cane. At least you get cars stopping and cute high school boys helping you. I might keep this up for awhile anyway.

So there I am hobbling along with my cane, thank goodness for shopping carts! Shuffling the isles of the grocery store. I have to stop occasionally to catch my breath and adjust my leg/hip/thigh/ ouchy pinchy places. So I was stopped near a small case freezer of what looked like pizza’s. You know the kind, the inside looks like our home freezer, with one foot thick of frost, telling us it is way overdue for a cleaning. And that’s on the the frost free freezers. Shifting and squiggling, I noticed an older woman, ok, ancient woman, with knarled hands, feeble eyes, and bent over with osteowhatever. She slowly rolled her cart to the freezer, looked in, looked up, looked around, and did it all over again. Oh my, I thought she is going to shoplift mini pizzas. I have heard this is a real problem with the elderly, now, with limited income, they are finding more shoplifting old ladies. She continued to do this several more times. I tried not to be obvious, checking prices on the diapers nearby, geez, that isn’t obvious at my age!

When quick as snip she reached in with her knarled, knotted fingers and PooF! Grabbed a chunk of ice and threw it down her blouse!!!!! After controlling my inner laughter, I went over and said, here, dear, is a better idea. Follow me. We strolled over to the frozen food doors, where I opened a door for her, and one for me, stuck my head in, and said….Do you think these fish sticks WAY in the back are a good buy, or should we look at the tater tots in the next door, come in and look at these!!!!! Of course we were laughing so hard another elderly lady issue came up…first one to the lady’s room wins!!!!

Deep in the freezer from “CoolestChicOnThePlanet”.