So you scoffed at those HOA fees and the ” we will take care of everything” mantras of the retirement communities. If we had a million dollar lock and leave carriage house we could be off to the Caribbean right now. Or at least be sitting down in the dining room of the retirement home and the consuming the Monday special and congratulating ourselves at the dinner table for the lack of effort we have to put out in a historic blizzard.
Instead we are here dealing with 32 inches of snow, a long long driveway and all the nuances of our new home for our first winter. This is where the rubber meets the road or the the snowblower meets the gravel driveway. Choosing to stay independent in a single family home has responsibilities and some new realities. Clearing outside vents for the furnace and dryer was a priority. We need more gutters to divert water dripping on to front steps. We may do better with buying a larger propane tank to be able to stock up. But oh the wonders of discovering that you open concept means you can do laps between the kitchen, dining room and living room.
We have planned ahead – the nice gentlemen that mow our lawn in the summer were to show up and plow the bulk of our driveway. But equipment is breaking down everywhere and we had to find another way. Both our younger and older neighbors have been in touch to offer help. Turns out the older folks in the neighborhood have some cool equipment and generous hearts.
My biggest worry was over exerting ourselves while we wait. This amount of snow could not happen again for another 10 years or it could happen again next month.
So far all our systems are holding and there is no panic just acceptance that this is part of the price of independence to have to depend on others at times. Seeing all this snow reminded me of being young ( who would have thought!) and building snow forts with my siblings. I remember that feeling of being inside a snow fort of our own making feeling both victorious and vulnerable at the same time. Kind of a, I can’t believe I did this and what will happen next feeling.
But as the old saying goes your home is your castle, but you have to be ready to defend it.