My snowplow guy said he couldn’t come this morning to sand. It was too cold to get the sander free. “We couldn’t hook up it up.” “Any idea when you can?” He suggested I go and get salt. Right. Over at Lowes I grabbed about seven bags of their finest salt which cost a cool twenty bucks a bag. I dropped about $140.00 on salt and came home determined to make my driveway as inviting as possible, so the fuel guy would have no excuse not to head down and fill us up. We’d spent the last night without heat. I was worried as well about the postman, who would otherwise need to leave piles of Christmas presents up by the road.
Sunny today and the salt went right to work, crackling away, and melting all it made contact with. Bag by bag I punched a whole in the corner and lugged the bag up one side and down the other for a thirty yard stretch until the bag was depleted. Then I drove down the same distance and repeated the process. I got most of the steepest areas done but I was out of salt before I could finish. Reasonably effective this is a prohibitively expensive way to make the driveway drivable.
I took a shovel to clear away the slush and not long after I heard the telltale sound of large truck slowly backing down the drive. I rushed up towards the steep incline where the truck and stopped and was now retreating. No! I doubled my pace and soon was speaking with the driver who fortunately was not only reasonable but confident. “Can I get you a cup of coffee? Can I massage your shoulders?” Obsequious, I needed this guy in a good mood. But there was no need. Felix, as I discovered he was named, couldn’t have been more polite and capable and soon the tank was three quarters full, with all he had left in his truck.
The boiler should, he suggested now just turn over. It didn’t. Kindly, Felix came in, and joined me in the basement to have a look. “Can you get me an empty plastic bottle?” “You got it.” The air needed to be purged he suggested before the boiler would turn and he showed me hot to do this and what steps to take if I had to do it myself and, then, for the first time in about sixty hours or so, the boiler rumbled back to life. I tipped Felix and wished him a Merry Christmas and though it took him two times, he was able to race up and out of our driveway and head on his way.