A Modest Proposal 4.4

BY DAN ROGERS - DIAMOND LAKE, WASHINGTON - USA

Dan’s plan

“An optimist is nothing but a pessimist that believed the weather forecast. Or, maybe more to the point. Anybody who really believes that “hope springs eternal.” should maybe get their springs tightened up a mite.”

Dang groundhawgs!

An optimist is nothing but a pessimist that believed the weather forecast. Or, maybe more to the point. Anybody who really believes that “hope springs eternal.” should maybe get their springs tightened up a mite. OK. To be fair, today is Super Bowl Sunday. Those genius’ down at the weatherguessing department are probably all at somebody’s game-day party. They probably just picked some old forecast out of the file to run while they were having beer and pretzels with the guys, this afternoon. Nobody was likely going to be outside, and actually “doing anything” today. Weather forecasting for the number-one indoor sports day in the whole galaxy is on the verge of being extraneous, anyhow.

Like just about always, some poor SOB won’t get the memo. And, I was that particular SOB today. You see. It was supposed to warm up. Stop snowing. And maybe start to rain. Like spring. Which, to be statistically objective, the Spring Equinox is only 43 days hence. Almost tomorrow in optimist days.




This matters, how?

Well, my neighbor, Patrick, said he could come down the hill and help me for a few minutes this morning. I’ve been expecting to get Gypsy Wagon out of the shop and onto her trailer. And, since the “warming trend” that NOAA Weather has been offering me was supposed to begin today. It seemed like an auspicious juxtaposition of critical factors. Well, it could happen.

But. It didn’t.

Maybe I should set the stage just a bit. This is the backyard-side of our house. Those snow mounds extend about half way to the gutters, from three porch steps down to the ground. Maybe something more serious is afoot here, than simple Pollyanna optimism. I’ll let you be the judge.

By the time Patrick got here, I had already gotten the garage emptied of rolling stock, and the latest Frankenwerke opus clear of the various tools, oddments, and appurtenances surrounding her recent sort-of-completion. Also. I had a rabidly brilliant scheme that was simply bubbling over to be tried.

Unfortunately, the staff photographer said he had to go in and check on the pre-game parades, or cheerleaders, or something about this point. So, I’ll just have to describe this incredibly brilliant idea. I suppose I’ve done this trailer on/off/back-on thing several dozen times. Each time, the biggest problem (other than reliable weather forecasting, that is) is the real possibility that the boat will fall over. And GW has been sitting on a center-line row of furniture dollies and balanced with hydraulic jacks under the hindquarters. That works fine for staying in one place. Moving around? Not so much.

So. This absolutely galactically brilliant scheme was all about keeping the boat on her feet while traversing the 50-foot run out into the sunlight. Well, overcast-gonna-snow, is probably closer to the truth. Anyhow. For once, the trailer going back under this boat is actually the trailer that came out from under this boat back last Septober. That means that it might fit the boat without lots of on-scene mods. Back at the optimistic beginning of what portended to be a short Building Season. And, I guess you could say that the BS was on the short side, because I was on the binnacle list for almost two out of the past three months. Granted, the Christmas Elves did stay over at the end of their season to help out. But, those guys are usually high on sugar plumbs, and pretty erratic when it comes to showing up for work. So.

The plan was to set the aft rollers of the trailer against the bow. The winch was tightened until the boat made noises like she was gonna’ cartwheel up onto the trailer in a paroxysm of joy. And, lo and behold, IT WORKED!

Basically, I put Alice the tractor into reverse and just pulled the whole train out as far as the snow. The dollies under the central hull began to split off and jump up behind, like couples at the end of a hayride. Kaboom. We were down on the snow and sliding away from the garage door like nobody’s business. After that, Patrick played C-sharps with the winch strap; and I steadily shoved the trailer back under the hull, courtesy Alice’s ancient four cylinders.

This was just about the slickest iteration of a ritual that has grown in spectacle, pomp, and pageantry over the years. Note to self: “Make sure there’s snow and ice on the ground when it’s time to insert the trailer.”

That was about 0900. As a surprise to nobody but me; it started to snow. And, snow. And, SNOW. It’s probably about half-time about now. I know this, because we’ve been experiencing a brown-out for a few minutes, as thousands of microwaves fire up and refrigerator doors pop open around the county.

And. It’s still snowing. Pollyanna was a total idiot.

This, by the way, this is the front yard. The roof has been raked once, already this season. It was actually almost snowless at one point a couple weeks ago. I do suppose, even with no additional snow, one might consider the possibility of spring being delayed just a bit.

But, when it does come. I think we can count on lots and lots of water to float our boats in. He said, optimistically.

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