What a glorious morning! It snowed about an inch and a half (appx 4 cm) overnight, the sun is shining, and there's no wind. It's crisp and beautiful and I was looking for excuses to be outside.
I filled the feeders while an audience of sparrows and finches waited in the nearby cherry tree for me to go inside. Salvador sat on the porch after I'd swept the snow off but he hates to get his feet wet and cold, so he didn't venture into the yard.
While we haven't acquired the feral cat who roams the park at night, we have acquired his appetite. I can't bear to see anything go hungry, so I've been putting food out for him this past week. He shows up at 9:00 p.m., eats half and comes back at 2:00 am to eat the rest.
He's black with white paws and a white chest spot, and while I assume it's a male cat because of the breadth of the head, it could be a female. For now, "it" will be known as daw-gooth' the Skurare word for cat.
Last night, because I had mistakenly bought a can of chicken and gravy cat food, which our Feline Overlord Does Not Want, I put it out for Dawgooth. Because I knew it would freeze if I put it out ahead of time I waited till he came to eat the bowl of dry food, then I opened the door and set the bowl of canned food beside the bowl of dry. When I opened the door he scurried under the truck and hid until I was back inside, but then he approached cautiously, sniffed and dove in. He must have thought he'd died and gone to cat food heaven. He wolfed that food down and polished the bowl with his tongue. It must have seemed wonderfully warm as the wind chill was -8 at the time.
He then ate about half the dry food and slid away into the night. He came back later but by then snow had filled the bowl and for the first time he didn't eat every scrap. This morning I took Sal's plastic carrier, covered it with a black garbage bag to keep out the wet, and set it on the porch. I'll set the bowls just inside it, and hopefully they will not fill up with snow again.
Most everyone in the park has been complaining about being cold in their RVs, but we are toasty with our panel heaters. Good thing. Our old furnace - original to the Tinpalace, has packed it in and won't light. Gary the RV guy came out yesterday, tested it and declared it DEAD. You can't get parts for a 35-year-old furnace so we are now waiting for him to return with a new furnace.
Can't say I'm in mourning for the old one. You had to get down on the floor, fiddle switches, twiddle with valves and depress a spring-loaded button located in the depths of the furnace to fire the thing. The button was supposed to work after a minute, but we've depressed it for 15-20 minutes, using a hammer handle as a lever, before it would light.
This is less fun than it sounds when it's -20 and the furnace goes out in the middle of the night. In that kind of weather the floor gets freezing cold without the furnace. In fact the primary reason we run the furnace is to keep the pipes under the floor from freezing in bitter weather.
The new furnace will be controlled by the thermostat. Turn it up and the furnace will light all by itself! What a concept!