The First Dusting of Snow in the New Cabin

Just a couple of weeks ago, I moved into my new cabin. It’s about 8 miles from campus, one bedroom with a loft, no running water, and across the driveway from some good friends! I’m really liking the feeling of finally getting settled into my own place, completely independent from family and roommates. Becoming familiar with which light switches do what, finding what the best furniture layout is, and learning how much fuel I’ll need are just a few of the things you can expect when moving into a new place.

Due to a demand for places to sit, I removed the middle two seats from the minivan my parents left behind for me as they retired and moved out of Fairbanks. My living room is now furnished with two reclining leather car seats, equipped with cup holders, movable armrests, and an adjustable track on which they can slide forward and back. It’s pretty slick. They’re situated on either side of my Toyostove, which is typically turned off while I’m out and about for the day. I do this not only to save money, but also because I had no clue how much fuel was in the tank. That is, until it was at zero gallons; then it was pretty obvious how much fuel I had.

Last year, it snowed on 9/25, my birthday. This year it waited a little longer. This year, the snow waited until I ran out of fuel to dust the trees and forest floor around my cabin. What perfect timing! Not to worry, it didn’t stick. But regardless, I’ve got plenty of wool shirts and sweaters, blankets and quilts, even a few thermal base layers. Having all of these items handy certainly helped my at least stay comfortable during the two days it took to have fuel delivered. The good news is, the fuel delivery guy mentioned that the 100 gallons he gave me should last a few months… so I don't’ have to worry about running out again until 2017!

I do at least appreciate that we still haven’t gotten much snow so far this year. What we did get has already melted and I certainly don’t mind having a few more days or autumn colors before the snow flies. When it does, I’ll have to bust out the ole snowboots, snowpants, shovels, extension cord for the car, among other winter essentials. For those who aren’t familiar with cold climate cars, we winterize our vehicles with heating pads on the oil pan and battery block. During the winter months, most people will plug their cars in, either right before going to bed or first thing in the morning, depending on how early they get up. To non-alaskans, it may look like everyone has electric vehicles; outlets in every parking lot, pretty much all cars and trucks dawning a small plug sticking out of their grill, extension cord in the back seat. Just another quirky aspect of living in such a unique place!

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