Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hurricane Ike, Pt. 5

The Husband climbs back into bed at 7:00 am. There is a grocery store about 15 miles away that is up and working. He was there at 6 am and manages to get 8 bags of ice. When he tells me, I am as pleased as a pioneer wife probably was when her man brought home a fat deer. My husband, the ice hunter.

He also got another gallon of milk. This one we can put back on the ice after breakfast.

We have heard rumors that a garbage truck will come today. It won’t get any of the yard trash, but it will pick up all of the “household” trash. The Husband carries all our garbage out to the curb while I take a deep breath, and wade into the big freezer. First, I take a picture. Then, The Husband, done with the garbage, begins making a list of all the things we throw away, for insurance purposes. New Mexico chiles, mole enchiladas, homemade stock, soup … I don’t cry, but I’m sad. Less from the monetary and more from all of the labor I am throwing away. I like to make things and freeze them to eat later, like a farmer’s wife with her larder of canned vegetables and fruits. And our friends have brought us food for while LW is in treatment. I console myself that we’ve eaten most of these gifts.

A few things, like whole chickens, are still frozen solid. We keep those. Some are partially thawed, I put those in a cooler to cook today. We throw away 2 ½ large black bags of sausages, jambalaya, onigiri, and more.

I begin cooking. First thing, 5 lbs of seasoned chicken thighs. I have 10 more lbs of the same; they were on sale recently. I cool them, and mix with garlic that I roasted on the grill yesterday, mayonnaise from an unopened jar, chopped pickles. I can take some of this to the hospital with me tomorrow for my meals, and can leave some for the kids. I am overwhelmingly grateful for the ice we have.

Two bags of New York Times cookie dough balls, that had been carefully made, even more carefully “aged” for the requisite 36 hours. Heartbreaking to throw them away. Hmmm …

I turn off 2 of the three burners on the bbq grill, spread the area over them with foil and then parchment paper, and lay out some of the cookie dough spheres. I close the lid, checking it 15 minutes later. This can’t work, I know. I open the lid.

Looks like cookies to me.

I cook them a little longer, then let them cool. They’re warm and delicious. I cook up another batch, then go door to door to my neighbors, “Cookie Delivery!” They’re pleased to get big warm chocolate chip cookies.

Face it, if you have a sweet tooth, I’m a good person to Hurricane with. We’re all going to be 10 lbs heavier by the time the electricity comes back.

More cooking, like boiling up a whole lot of shrimp. And making burgers. I chop up the chicken and make chicken salad (with fresh-bought mayo) to take to the hospital.

The Hospital. Oh yeah. Last week, we were on our way to the hospital and we got a phone call saying, “Turn around and go back home.” Hurricane Ike has postponed LW’s chemo by a week.

In the dark, I pack. There’s not much to pack. Most of the bags I just left in the car from the previous week. No matter how tempted by the clean underwear, I stayed away, so that I could have clean good clothes at the hospital.

Tomorrow, I will have tv, wifi, air conditioning. For once, my family is envious of LW and I as we plan to go. For us, the hurricane is over.

Well … Hurricane Ike, anyway.

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

Wowswers. I have read your posts with both horror and amazement at your good writing, interesting thoughts, and, generally, upbeat attitude. Hope that things smooth out soon - well, smooth out at least to pre-hurricane levels. So sad that you lost all that food that you stocked up like a pioneer. :( Hugs from up north, Elizabeth