Baby, It’s Cold Outside–And Inside, Too

This morning our furnace’s gone to rest was obvious the moment my nose burst the covers. I tried the usual trick and when that didn’t work I called Joe, our stalwart heating/a.c. guy in Amery, who, as always, came promptly after admonishing me by phone “Don’t touch anything!” so he could isolate the problem. While awaiting our hero, I got an electric heater going, fired up the wood stove, and got the kitchen (electric) oven cranking. Bravo! Heat in time to leave to chair the monthly meeting of the Osceola Seniors.

Speaking off heroes, WPCA’s story broadcast last night was The Many Trials, a mangled fairy tale from my first story collection, Four Break Time Stories. The story is an upgrade, if you can call awful puns and plays on words an upgrade, from stories I told my children when they were small. The hero, Horatio, must pass three difficult tests in order to marry the princess. If he can’t pass the tests, he loses his head. It’s a fun story that had me chuckling myself at times as I listened.

Wolf Creek UMC continues to meet, even during our bitterly cold weeks of late. We’ve had the furnace adjusted with a new thermostat so that the place heats up nicely and stays warm while we are there. The number of people showing up is down; perhaps some of those who are not physically present with us are catching our service each week on You Tube (Wolf Creek United Methodist Church services). I have no way of knowing, but we do have some regular subscribers.

The longer you live, it seems, the more funerals you attend and there have been plenty of those to note lately, including those of good friends. The circle grows smaller with time. Words, no matter how wise, just are inadequate. The fact that we live with hope for the future because we have Jesus’ promises makes all the difference.

Friday I record True Justice, the first story I’ve written and completed since they dredged me out of retirement to pastor again three years ago. It seems that the creative energies have been tilted toward what to say on Sundays. However, once I “got” how to extract two of my major characters from the box I’d written them into, everything rolled nicely into place. I’ll be reading that story for WPCA-FM, as part of my short story series that they broadcast each month. The station streams online so anyone with a computer can listen in. (It’s

The dust is settling now that our out of town kids have returned home. Son Aaron is back home in Portugal after being more than helpful around the place and after showing me some nice flamenco guitar tricks. Daughter Alice squeezed us into her busy schedule so she could join her siblings in a face-to-face get-together, where I’m sure they talked about their parents and probably shook their heads in dismay. Actually, there was some concern because Marina was fighting a nasty infection that put her out of commission for about a week until her doc changed her prescription to a drug that is more risky but also more effective. (Most every drug can have side effects, so we are careful about what we put into ourselves.)

I leave this trusting that the furnace, which is new, will stay on all night on a night when it’s forecast to hit 19 below zero.