Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas Dinner Disaster Averted

Regular visitors to this humble site are no doubt aware of my running battle with those who deliver municipal services, particularly the removal of sewage and the delivery of water. But for those who are new, just be aware that, due to permafrost, there are no pipes connecting the houses up here with water mains or sewers. Consequently, both water and sewage are contained in large plastic tanks which must be refilled/emptied on a regular basis, the operative word being "regular".

Christmas 2005 was a fiasco. An hour before a magnificent turkey was ready and guests to arrive, we ran out of water. No water to boil potatoes, no water to wash turkey grease-encrusted hands and dishes, and certainly no water to make orange juice required for traditional Christmas screwdrivers. We couldn't even borrow water from the neighbours since everyone was in the same position. The turkey had to be removed still slightly undone and refrigerated, and guests quickly phoned to inform them of the delay.

At that point I vowed not to be caught in the same position ever again.

This year royal edict went out in the house that no clothes were to be washed, no toilets to be flushed, and no showers to be taken until after Christmas dinner and the start of my post-prandial hibernation, from which I would only stir at the sound of the sewage truck backing up to my house.

Unfortunately, we had a Quisling or two in our midst, and the "sewage full" light came to life a good four hours before chow time. "Sewage full", BTW, also means "water cut off" since the designers of this house's plumbing figured that most people would still be pouring water down the drains and flooding the sub-flooring with raw sewage unless they were physically prevented from using a drop of fresh water.

But this time, we ran out of water so early that we were able to mooch off the neighbours, probably causing them to run out of water as a consequence.

In any event, Christmas dinner went off with very few hitches. Our guests came, consumed and departed - many with their jackets placed over their shoulders so they wouldn't smudge their jacket sleeves with turkey grease. This morning, however, we have mountains of unwashed dishes and unrefrigerated leftovers occupying every square centimetre of counter top, table top and chair top.

I guess I'll go back to bed until I here the sound of the sewage truck. Then I'll wait another hour or two until someone has broken down and tackled that mess.


Blogger The Wrath of Dawn said...

Merrrrrrrrrrry Christmas!

Oh, wait...

Happppppppppy Boxing Day!

Hope you hear the cheery sound of the sewage truck backing up to the tank soon.

Glad you're back, dude. You've been missed.

1:38 PM  
Blogger Fuff said...

Great stuff! I would go back to sleep at the sight of so many dishes too.

1:41 PM  
Blogger merlinprincesse said...

Dishes? Who wants to wash it? Buy new one! :))))

10:11 PM  
Blogger fairscape said...


This is a terrific Christmas present to all of blogdom ; Nanuk is back posting again.

Do you have any traditional celebrations tied to the Solstice?

Since this recurrent sewage/water problem is truly awful from a public health point of view couldn't the government be prevailed upon to hook you up to a second set up in your basement for when the first one fills up ?

5:01 AM  
Blogger marty said...

Wow! I can just imagine how this w/b handled in new yawk.

12:01 PM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

Well...can you send me some real estate brochures? :)

8:31 PM  
Blogger nanuk said...

WoD - thanks a pile. The sewage truck has arrived and left heavy laden with a couple of days worth of . . . deposits. The cubs have been rousted from their beds, the dishes are done, and I can now settle down with a well-deserved Laphroaig.

Fuff - unfortunately we cannot simply chuck or dirty dishes overboard in true sailor's fashion.

MerlinePrincesse - (and Phos would appreciate this approach) we have been know to take particularly disgusting roasting pans and stuff out to our husky for some heavy duty scouring. Better that Brillo.

Fairscape - thanks. I don't think solstice was actually celebrated as such. It being so dark I imagine a lot of time was spent inside the igloo playing games and . . . keeping warm.

Marty - I'm sure New Yorkers were organize a petition and present it with rancor to the city fathers, right?

Fab - BTW your avatar rocks! Strange but true, you can't buy any land up here, not that anyone would want to. Land is held collectively and leased out (in town at least) for a nominal fee.

10:26 PM  
Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

And here I thought the holiday garbage back up was a pain (garbage day fell on X-mas day this year)

11:41 PM  

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