A post not about nature, this time, but about the nature of living in a house: fixing stuff.

Friday evening, got to the house as I usually do. To one difference: After an initial “blub”–a gallon of water from the tap for cat bowl and plant watering–nothing. Not a drop nor a hiss nor anything. No sign of broken pipes in the utility room…but there, a telltale sign. The gauge on the pressure tank read “0”. Not good.

Now, the house is not new. Much of it is original equipment from the 70s. The pumping of water is dependent upon electricity, which I had. I am a novice in such matters, frantically ignorant in many cases of what works and how. I debated whether to call the folks whose name was on the pressure tank, and finally gave in. At 10 pm.

I’d thought I would get an answering machine. Instead, I got a sweet, patient woman who took my info and assured me that someone would phone early the next morning. These folks were as good as their word.

7:30, Jake calls. Says he’ll be there in an hour. And hour later, Jake arrives. Does a thorough check of this and that. Discovers that the bolt on the well-head was jammed. Fixes that, removes it, and discovers that the pipes are frozen where the water heads for the house. 

Jake brings out his industrial-strength defroster and gets the water moving again. Tells me to replace the insulation around the pump (which is the project that takes up the rest of my morning.) I expect I’ll need to replace the whole gizmo soon, as I’ll need to replace so much of what is old and fading around the place. But–like my PT Cruiser with 133,000 miles on it, I’ll keep it limping along for as long as I can. Ah, as my friend Liz would say, the joys of home ownership!

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