Hot Toddy Anyone?


So why’d we move to Florida again? Oh, yeah, no state taxes. I forgot.

The storm that’s now beginning to hit upper northeast cities got its start yesterday off the Jacksonville coast, which is just up the road from us. We had windy conditions with a driving rain most of the day, and then it got really cold over night. The temperature this morning when we woke up was 29 degrees.

I bought my Toyota in California back in 2007. Except for a very brief Portland, Oregon snow storm where it was garaged, this car has never really experienced temperatures below 40 degrees in its entire life. When this current cold snap began about a week ago, I noticed the car was starting to make sounds as I started the engine. I now realize that was its cry for help. This morning when I went to take out the garbage, I saw immediately that every window on it was covered with a thin layer of ice.

It looked pitiful.

I try hard not to personify my objects and possessions (I’ve been told it’s not very masculine), but I just couldn’t help but feel sorry for this car. Then I tried to start the engine but the battery was dead. I froze the poor thing!

My poor, cold car earlier today. It now has a new battery and a determined desire to never trust me ever again.

If that weren’t enough, we also discovered this morning that our hot water heater died at some point during the night. Gorgeous noticed it in the shower, which didn’t exactly warm the cockles of her… well you get the idea. She wasn’t pleased. The problem turned out to be a broken thermostat. The plumber arrived in record time and replaced it in ten minutes. I’m sure his family will mention us tonight in thanks as they sit down to dinner.

Within the same hour, the auto club also got my car started. I drove over to a mechanic who replaced the battery with noticeable cheer. I’m stimulating the local economy today whether I wanted to or not.

Of course, that’s not necessarily the case for all businesses here in northern Florida. We noticed yesterday during the worst of the storm that our grocery store was uncommonly empty. There was bread and toilet paper aplenty, but just no customers!

But it is nonetheless interesting to see what some people buy during a storm, isn’t it?

Normally the first few weeks after New Year’s you get those “resolution” people who are newbies starting at the gym. They begin like gangbusters with chests pumped out, stomaches somehow turned in, and they’ve got gusto coming out of their… let’s say ears. But really within a few weeks we see less and less of them. By the end of February the place is for the most part back to normal with the familiar faces. So we braced ourselves yesterday for this annual invasion at our gym.

Not this week at least, though. We literally had the place to ourselves; the TV screen above my machine pretty much told the story.

And let’s be honest here. Some of the hearty regulars who did bother to show up, aren’t shooting for any Jack LaLanne lookalike awards.

Gorgeous has been complaining over the last couple of weeks that this is not the Florida she knows and loves. She’s been looking regularly at the weather for our previous city to the south, and hasn’t been shy to point out to me that they’re having a comparable “heat wave” with temperatures 20 degrees higher. My reasoned arguments back to her that this storm is a seasonal anomaly, that by this coming Monday we’ll be back to 70 degrees, that isn’t it nice to have opportunities to be cozy and snuggly just like the good old days in Michigan?, have all mostly gone on deaf ears. I think the hot water heater problem earlier this morning was probably the, ‘er, icing on the cake. It’s best I just stay silent.

For those of you reading this in northern states, particularly the Mid Atlantic and New England areas, I can appreciate any sarcasm you might be directing my way right now. You are no doubt looking longingly at travel brochures for Tahiti or Maui as your own temperatures head to sub-zero levels, along with several inches of snow.

So please don’t worry about us. We’ll suffer through the next few 40 degree days coming up.

Until next time…


28 thoughts on “Hot Toddy Anyone?

  1. There is something about modern conveniences that they feel duty bound to break just when you need them most. I woke up on New Years Day and it was 7 degrees. And our heating system broke trying to warm the house up after a 3 hour power failure. It was not a happy new year! But we survived! And it is fixed!

    During the first snowstorm in my current house about 14 years ago, the local paper proudly reported that in advance of the storm, the local Safeway quickly sold out of bread, toilet paper, and hearts of palm. Still cracks me up.

    Stay warm!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I just finished reminding my mother (who was complaining about the cold weather in our part of Vancouver Island) that it is currently a balmy 2 degrees C (or 35.6 degrees F), which is pretty good for Canadian winter standards. Joining Gorgeous’ sentiments, she wasn’t amused either.
    Wishing both of our towns warmer days ahead.
    BTW – LOVED the photos!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I patted my car’s hood this morning and apologized to her for the cold weather. Poor thing had never seen anything below 50° before this week. Hope you’ve gotten all the bad stuff out of the way for the entire year!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sitting here in warm and cozy SoCal, I find it hard to grasp the low temperatures I’ve been reading about… even in your normally balmy Florida.I even read something about iguanas falling out of trees because they are too cold to hang on (be sure to wear a hat!). Btw, I did have to put on a sweater this evening though, so we are suffering too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A sweater??! No! Curiously, this weather has allowed me to wear my father’s checkered fedora. I can’t quite pull it off yet (in another five years I suspect it’ll be perfect), but the cold temps allowed me to at least wear it and channel his vibe for a quick outing to the grocery store the other day. By Monday, though, it’ll be back to baseball hats and light sweatshirts. Iguanas falling from trees? Yuck

      Liked by 1 person

  5. It was 7 here the other morning. I love it! I actually bumped the thermostat up to 70 for about an hour. Most of the time, I keep it at 68…and I always turn it off at night.
    In the “olden days,” I put a blanket on the hood of my car and poured boiling water on the windshield. (stupid.)
    I keep my car in the garage but as soon as I drive out, it gives me a warning…”cold outside temperature.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, the boiling water is a no-no, but I guess it only takes a couple of times for someone to learn that. 🙂 We try to keep ours at 68, but then our hands have been like ice. So it’s been at 71 during the day. The problem is that the condos here really aren’t built for such cold temperatures. We’re not exactly keeping that cold out very well!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. You know it’s all about perspective, right? I’m sure you feel gypped. After all, as you so correctly stated, that why people live down there. They want to avoid this sort of horror. But New Jersey currently feels like a barren, frozen wasteland. I’ve been home bound for two days because of it. We’re all have cabin fever and are at each other’s throats. We all have to persevere. It can’t possibly go on forever, can it?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. In our case, I really sort of expect this to happen now and then because we live in northern Florida. My wife is struggling because she hates the cold, and it was about 20 degrees warmer where we used to live. But honestly, it’s bound to happen even here. So yeah, I agree totally with you, it’s all about perspective. I do hope it warms up a bit where you are because I remember those days of cabin fever during snow storms like it was yesterday. It gets old really fast. Hang in there…


  7. As my daddy used to say, “Cowboy up!” LOL! That sheet of ice on your sweet little car is just building it’s character! In the end, that car will have become a total road warrior! I’m coming with Beth, but I’ll sleep on the couch if necessary. I should mention that in a past life I was a bartender, so I’m pretty sure I can work with her tequila! Stay warm! ~ Lynn

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Dude, it’s just barely seated the rings! LOL! They get better with age! This fall, I became the proud owner of a 1946 Jeep Willys! The odometer says 86,000, but I’m pretty sure thats 186,000! But like yours, we needed a new battery, and with just a little more work we’ll be able to “drive it till it pukes!” HaHa!

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Funny! I’m laughing as I blow on my fingers to get them to move across the keyboard. They keep turning blue. It’s a “high” of 20 here in NE today. But hey, I sympathize with you, I really do. I’m even rooting for your football team as I watch them stun the Steelers (28-21 as I type at beginning of 4th). 😜


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