By Betty Shearer
Delivery of the papers last Wednesday went very smooth and I was even a little ahead of schedule. Roads were completely dry and even though it was cold, it was not unbearable—wind was not blowing. It was good to see everyone and be back on our normal routine.
Back in the office, I completed the postal report and then began on subscription notices. Kept a close watch out the window, though. A little before eleven it started to sleet and the volume coming down quickly escalated. I knew we were going to have to close pretty soon. David went to the bank and while he was gone Claudia and Mark Anthony called to tell me I’d better get home if I intended to go. Mark thought then that I’d have trouble getting up the hill. He offered to come on his four-wheeler and carry me up if the van wouldn’t. Well the van made it about one-third of the way up and then just wouldn’t pull any farther. I put on in park and set the parking brake, hoping it would hold and not slide back into the gully.
Then I jumped to the side of the driveway—didn’t dare step on that ice covering the blacktop. Had my coat and purse in my hand and walked up on the sleet and snow covered gravel, leaves and grass. Made it fine, but had to walk all the way to the carport, cross it and then walk on the ground to the steps—walk was covered with ice. Safely in the house, I had no intention of getting out until the thaw.
I have a totally electric house and the current went off three times—a couple of times from one to two hours and the third for almost five hours. I was surprised at how well my house held the heat. It started about 72 degrees and never went below 66. I had stacked up several blankets, had several flashlights (one in my PJ pocket) and had amassed enough candles to have gotten me through the ’94 ice storm. Also had plenty of food within arms reach.
When the power came on the last time, early Thursday morning, I began cooking. Made sausage, gravy, eggs and biscuits for breakfast. After breakfast I washed the week’s dishes, cleaned out one fridge, and then cooked lunch—ham steak, cabbage and onions, stewed potatoes, and cornbread. Had shortcake for dessert. That cold snap probably cost me about a five pound weight gain.
The snow was beautiful coming down Wednesday afternoon and it was just as pretty as it fell off the trees and shrubs all day Thursday. I’d take a little time out from my snow watching to put laundry in, tidy up a little, and watch a bit of TV—mostly news.
Late Thursday afternoon long-time friend, Michael Scroggins, who had been working for many long hours, noticed my van on the drive-way. He called to see if I wanted him to bring it up the hill and I told him I’d like it, but not to put his life in danger doing it. He assured me he could handle it and he did. I’d left the key in the ignition, but forgot to tell him, so he had to walk all the way up that hill and then back down. He cleared my driveway and walk. You just can’t find better friends anywhere that we have in the Valley. I do love and appreciate all of mine—couldn’t get along without them.
Bo stayed with Mom Thursday afternoon and night, but I was able to get over to the nursing home about nine Friday. Bro. Rance had offered to come and get me on Thursday, but I told him even if he came I’d not ride to Batesville with him. Friday morning I had no trouble getting down my driveway, after Michael had cleared it. Bill had advised me to come 315 to 6 and then into Batesville and both these highways were completely clear—I’m sure they had been plowed.
Over the weekend, found long-time friend, Donna Traywick, in the nursing home. I’m sure many of you, who attended the horse shows in the 70s, and 80s, will remember. Donna, her late husband, George, and daughter, LaDonna, who rode in the Tri-Lakes Horse Club for many years. She has had a knee replaced and is in the nursing home for rehab. She looks great, is doing very well, and hopes to go home at the end of this week. Was so good to see her again.
On Friday I met another Water Vallian who is employed by the nursing home. We spent a good bit of time together over the weekend, as she, along with several others, were pulling double shifts. Stephanie Holmes Wicks is a daughter of Betty and David Holmes; and a granddaughter of Mable and Joe Willie Holmes. The late William Holmes was her great-uncle. She’s such a caring, cheerful person and is so helpful with Mother. It’s fun to meet all the folks there who live in Water Valley or have WV ties.
Thought sure that winter weather was finished, now that March has arrived. Seems that is not to be the case, as more freezing temps, along with maybe ice, sleet and snow, are predicted to arrive by late Wednesday—sounds like a repeat of last week.
Also, we’ll loose an hour of daylight in the mornings Sunday, March 8—I hate this. It has just gotten to pre-dawn when I start the route on Wednesday, but next week it will be back to complete darkness. Most folks like the daylight in the afternoon—so guess I’ll let the majority win and not complain.
Hope everyone has a good, safe week.