Saturday, January 1, 2011

A New Year's Day Crisis, or Two

3 Apr 2004: 14-year-old Sarah with 2-year-old Cocoa Puff

This isn't the way to begin a brand new year.  Our morning started out badly first thing, when Sarah went out to feed her rabbits and found that Cocoa Puff had died in the night.  Sarah was understandably upset.  It's always hard to lose a beloved pet. 

However, Cocoa had a full life. She would have been 9 years old come February, and that's a good, long life for a little bunny. Back in 2003 and 2004, Cocoa was Sarah's best show rabbit because she was so calm and patient, easy to pose for the judges.

20 Apr 2009: Sarah and Cocoa 5 years later

Cocoa was always a big hit with little children who came to our house, too. Her sweet temper, coupled with the qualities that made her such a good show rabbit, made her gentle and still while being held tightly by tiny, eager hands.

12 June 2009: Cocoa Puff with our great-niece Analyce

Cocoa is survived by her sister, Likki Nikki (short for Licorice Nicole), the last of our rabbits.  Cocoa had begun to seem frail over the past few months, but our bad-tempered Likki still seems hale and hearty.

We received almost 2 feet of snow between Wednesday evening and Friday afternoon, and then last night the temperature dropped to the lowest point I've seen in my 21 winters here: 13 degrees below zero!  No doubt the extreme cold contributed to Cocoa's demise.  The cold certainly created our second crisis of the day. 

After returning from shoveling a neighbor's snow, Dylan found this outside faucet spraying water into the air.  He tried to turn it off, but no luck.  Water was also gushing from under the house and saturating the ground along the foundation.

From there, the water ran under the snow and flooded the trail from the porch to the gate.  By the time I took this picture it had begun to soak in, but the water was several inches deep when Ed and I came home from shopping.  Dylan had called and summoned us home, panicked and unsure what to do.

On the other side of the saturated wall is Dylan's bedroom, and we found that corner of his room filling up with a rapidly expanding pool of water about 2 inches deep.  While Dylan unplugged all his electronic equipment, Ed quickly located the water switch-off valve and shut down the water to our entire house, which stopped the flood.  Dylan was dispatched to his room with a bucket and an armful of towels.  Now he has 3 fans blowing on the carpet in an attempt to dry it out as quickly as possible.

Probably the pipe leading to that faucet on the outside wall became frozen and burst during the night (a not-too-uncommon occurance in our area), but the water only began to leak when the temperature rose this afternoon and the ice began to thaw.  After exploring our insurance options, Ed decided it will be more cost effective to repair the pipes himself tomorrow.  Meanwhile, we get to live without water for the next 20 hours or so.  Groan...

And it's only the first day of 2011!  I hope this isn't a foreshadowing of the type of year we have ahead of us!  Maybe it just means we got all the bad stuff out of the way, and the rest of the year will be smooth sailing!

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