Saturday, October 30, 2010

Helping out the neighbors...

Yes I know, you all want to find out how the building is going, but I'll leave that one to Plickety.

So today no building, our nearest neighbors had some issues coming back from Fairbanks last night, their transmission let go and they were stuck about 40 miles from home. They got home, but, not with the truck and trailer they were hauling.

So today off we went to get the trailer, fortunately the neighbors have a Semi, so that took care of the towing vehicle. It just needed to get started, and chained up (no traction without a trailer). So that taken care of (by this time it was about 11 or 12) off we go the 40 miles to the place they broke down, with several pauses to check chains that kept loosening, or stretching not sure which. So that took about an hour or two, which would have been awesome, if the truck engine could have maintained enough heat to run the cab heater.

Once we got there first rule of business was to see whether we could get any drive to the pickup, so we topped off the transmission fluids, but no dice. So we disconnected the trailer, and hooked it up to the semi, then we decided to tow the truck too, using a firehose (which was interesting, but they do make a damn fine tow line). Now the engine on the truck was running fine, so great heat thought I, erm no, the engine was barely maintaining temperature to run, so I had to quick switch between the windshield and feet to try to keep the windshield clear, since I was getting snow spray all over it, the wipers cleared it, but it was refreezing, and to try to thaw out my feet. Which were remarkably cold. Then of course because we're towing we were restricted to about 10-15 mph. So a few hours later (and a snapped firehose) we got home. By the way, if you've never driven someone elses truck before on a good dry road, it is not the most comfortable experience being dragged behind another vehicle with about 15' of firehose between you and it on a snowy and icy road. Just in case you ever find yourself in this same situation.

Of course during this time Plickety and the other neighbor are getting a but anxious we've been away for by this time 4-5 hours and there's no sign of us. Our truck Sonja was sitting in their yard but in a different place, so they figured we're ok we have two vehicles, the Semi and our pickup. Then comes the fatal moment, of "what's that red truck over there...? Is that ours?" and gradual dawning that we only took the semi, so they both came looking for us. Found us a short while later.

We got home at about 8:30 to a reasonably cold residence, the last fire was laid at about 11, and of course just for fun we also had only a small supply of split firewood left over, so I had to go fire up the generator, and split wood for 45 minutes on my return.

However on a positive note, it feels pretty good helping out our friends across the road, in their time of need, even though I could have lived without the wood splitting on coming home.

I promise to bug my wife to post her latest report on the building. Right after I download the pictures from the camera that she's been bugging me to do...


Dan Lynch said...

Thanks for the update, Gungnir.

Helping neighbors is part of rural life. You'll fit right in.

You can't have too much firewood, can you ?

Anonymous said...

Life in the A-K: Paradise for Adrenaline Lovers!!!

Good on ya helping out the nabes.

Viva -- Sager