As I came out the south door yesterday, heading for the dog kennels, a huge drop of freezing-cold water found its way from the roof to the back of my neck and down my shirt. Of course, it was 37 degrees, so one could have anticipated a little melting, but when I looked up and actually SAW what was melting, it struck terror into my heart.
Directly overhead was the gutter--normal enough--but one which had escaped fall clean-out. Instead of a conduit for excess unwanted dripping, it had become a solid five-inch by three-foot by chunk of ice just waiting to bushwhack an unwary passerby. Yes, it was dripping slowly, but when I crawled up on the railing to peer into the problem, I could see the situation called for immediate major surgery.
So, I climbed back down, called MM, got my hair dryer and between the two of us, we went to work. For the next 45 minutes we trained the blow dryer on that gutter, took an occasional swipe at it with the claw hammer, and finally, together, we managed to clear the potentially lethal chunk of ice, first from the gutter, then off the walkway.
The points I make, here, I guess, include not only the process of inventing tools out here JOTOLR when you need them, but also of being watchful of situations that can create real trouble. For example, a blow dryer out here is not related to hair. Instead, it has saved us in so many instances. Thawing out things becomes challenging in winter! We never know when we're going to need a lot of hot air, and talking doesn't get it! Those of us who live "out here" need to be self-sufficient, alert, and inventive.
But there's always a silver lining: just look at the ice sculptures created by the drip! Aren't they beautiful??!!