Experience trumps forecasting

0
359
The weather quickly went from wet to slick Sunday in Chatham-Kent. Some folks, including the author, just have to go out to check conditions firsthand.
The weather quickly went from wet to slick Sunday in Chatham-Kent. Some folks, including the author, just have to go out to check conditions firsthand.

I’m one of those “idiots.” You know, someone who just has to go shopping on Christmas Eve and just has to go out for a drive in inclement weather.

So, yes, I was doing some last-minute shopping this past Christmas Eve – just for a few items, honest. And, yes, I went for a few short jaunts Sunday.

Talk about a weird and wild day. My first excursion was to the drug store at 9 a.m., in a downpour. It was 5C at the time, according to the car’s sensors.

Two hours later, back out I went in the sleet. This time to the grocery store and coffee shop (yes, bad planning on my part). The rain had changed to snow and the roads were starting to suck.

In just two short hours, it was below freezing, and the roads were already getting slick.

The blowing snow didn’t help at all.

That crap continued into the evening, when I slipped out a third time, pun intended. Actually, the main roads weren’t that bad and the snow had let up, but the side roads were more than a little icy and it was getting windier.

Caution ruled the day for me behind the wheel.

I didn’t leave town for a shopping trip (not that I’m prone to do that anyway as I’m a shop local fanatic), but I like to keep track of road conditions firsthand.

Quite often, I’ll drive to an intersection that borders on rural Chatham-Kent, giving me a good look at conditions outside of town.

It’s curiosity and concerns for safety, especially for family and friends who may have to drive in the conditions I’m observing.

Flash freeze

I’m an all-season barbecue person. Our Big Green Egg works well in all weather, as it’s ceramic and holds the heat in pretty well.

But one thing it’s really susceptible to is freezing shut, especially with conditions like we had Sunday. The gaskets get soaked and the temperature drops, all but cementing the top and bottom together.

I had that happen last year. Sensei Jeff, the guy who ultimately led me to buy my Egg, advised me to fill an empty soup can with charcoal, light it and lower it through the chimney. It works. As the charcoal burns and warms the interior, it causes the ice to melt and for the gaskets to separate.

Another fellow Egg aficionado, Greg, gave me a tip last winter to use a paint stir stick to keep the gaskets slightly separated. This worked like a charm.

So on Sunday, with all that in mind, I went into the backyard and put a piece of wood in between the gaskets at the front of the Egg.

When I checked Monday morning, everything was frozen in place. The wood was too thin and too short – too much of the gaskets were still in contact.

No big deal, as temperatures will warm up again later this week. I’ll just have to do a nice hot cook to dry everything out once I get the lid open.

Comments

comments

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here