Saturday, March 8, 2008


Have you ever wondered exactly how you have survived this long? I mean, you do something monumentally stupid and just have to tell yourself, you are too stupid to live.

Me too.

I thought I'd share a few. Just so you can laugh, point at me, and say, hey, at least I'm smarter than she is!

When I was still doing the commute to the Cities, I had to leave in the wee hours of the morning. In winter, this meant it was dark. I always fed the chickens before I left. One below zero January morning, I also stopped to check the llama water tank, to make sure that it hadn't frozen over in the night. The llama water tank is right outside the door to the chicken coop, so it was convenient.

I mentioned it was dark, right? Since I couldn't see, I just dipped my hand in the water. Good, not frozen. With the same hand, I grabbed onto the handle to go into the chicken coop. The metal handle.

I had forgotten the lesson that every Minnesota (or other cold climate) kid learns by the age of oh, six. Must include the kids that didn't have older brothers to teach them any younger, and they had to learn it in school. In the playground, by the flagpole. You know, don't put your tongue on the flagpole. Or, in my case, don't put your wet hand on the metal handle to the chicken coop.

So I stood there like the idiot I was, hand firmly frozen to the handle of the chicken coop door. I could see the headlines, "Minnesota woman freezes to death in tragic chicken coop accident". I tried reaching my other hand into the water tank, (in the hopes that I could unfreeze my hand by putting more warm water on it), but I couldn't reach. I tried breathing on it, hoping that the warm breath would thaw it out. Nope. I mentioned it was below zero, right?

I think I was there a good ten to fifteen minutes, until eventually my breath and body warmth finally unstuck my hand. I may have left some skin there.

Then I had to explain why I was late to work.

I just took this. (Well, when I first tried to post this. Blogger was having problems today. )


rilera said...

Annie, I'm glad you didn't freeze to death hanging onto that handle! That's scary. And I can't believe that you used to commute from there to the Cities. I thought I had a long commute!

Thanks for sharing the picture of your Mom. She looks so peaceful with her baby. My Mom has a teddy bear that she hugs at night too. Hugs to you and your mom (and the animals). Stay warm! I'm so tired of this cold and ready for spring.

flintysooner said...

I've had several events I should not have survived. The earliest I remember was when I was 5.

My dad had some, too. I guess maybe we all do. The year before I came to live with dad and mom though he was working on his old truck on a day when it was about 9 degrees. The hood fell and caught his arm and he couldn't free himself. Mom finally found him after 4+ hours. The heat from the engine kept him warm enough.

The image of your mom is really wonderful and I so appreciate you sharing it.


Cinnamin said...

I have learned (the hard way) never to say "never". I'm so impressed with this story that you did not panic, and very happy that you were able to free yourself from that metal handle!

Your Mom looks so sweet holding her baby. Thank you for posting this photo, it touched my heart.


cornbread hell said...

this one time at band camp...

cornbread hell said...

awesome picture, btw.

Annie said...

Now I want to hear your stories, Flinty, Cinn and Rick!

Robyn, yeah, I am officially sick of winter. Come on, it's March, no more of this below zero crap! I did the commute three days a week, the other two I worked from home.

Cindy said...

I haven't any bitter weather stories (I'm from Missouri for pity sakes). I'll have to think a bit about this. It's been a while for me. What a sweet picture of your mother. Sweet and poignant.

hopalong682003 said...

I love the picture of your Mom. Glad you have it. :-)

I'm also glad that you didn't panic when you got stuck. I live in California now, but I have my share of winter stories beause I lived in Minnesota, North Dakota, New York, New Hampshire most of my life.

In hindsight, one of my most idiotic moments was as a 9 or 10-year-old. I had never gone ice-skating and was thrilled to find a pair of ladies ice skates in our attic.

My friends wanted to go skating at a little pond about 3/4 mile through woods near our house. For some unknown reason, I laced on the skates and walked out of the house. By the time we got to the pond, I could hardly walk. It didn't occur to me that I was walking in size 8 (adult) boot. Ouch. I tried to skate...but finally gave up. My friends decided to head home, and my ankles hurt so bad that I couldn't keep up. So what does a nine-year-old do??? Off with the skates. I walked barefoot for 3/4 of a mile. Couldn't feel my feet, but I wasn't about to tell my friends that I was being a baby.

I'm 40 years old now, and my Mom STILL gets upset at me about this. A person really can be grounded for life. ;-)