Thursday, January 8, 2015

Learning from Experience

Some of you may remember the Water Wars from last year (and Water Races and Water Wars Again. (You can click on the links if you've forgotten) 

During an outrageous Arctic Blast, my water froze at the barn and in every line going to every automatic waterer I had. To keep water going to all the livestock, I hauled water for hours before AND after work to the barn, to the cow waterer, to the horse waterer. You get the idea. It was awful. To make matters worse, I had to heat the water in my kitchen, then pour it into the buckets for some reason which I have, thank the dear Lord, forgotten about now. Anyway, it was just awful and to make matters much worse, before it was all over, the water in my kitchen froze while it was dripping out of my faucet, leaving me with a very interesting icicle dangling from the faucet! After that, I really had a water adventure!

I was determined not to have a repeat performance this year. When I saw that we were about to have another Arctic Assault, I almost panicked. Then, I suddenly remembered. Oh yeah! I've learned from my mistake! When I was finally able to get away from hauling water long enough to get to the farm supply store last year, I snapped up two water heaters as quick as a flash. They've been in my cabinet ever since. These are just marvelous contraptions that are electric hot sticks to put in water buckets. They heat the water and prevent freezing. No hauling. No heating. Just plug and go. 

Before the temperature started dropping yesterday, I ran an extension cord to the automatic waterers, plugged in my water heaters, and put them to work. Marvelous! They are marvelous! I was a little nervous about the water this morning, especially when the water in the stall buckets was frozen. Needless to say, I dreaded checking the automatic waterers for fear of what I would find. Much to my surprise and delight, they were fine. No ice. Just nice warm water. The horses didn't really like the warm water, but it's much better than ice. 

I've been back and forth to the barn today, checking on the water and being sure all the animals are situated, and all day I've rejoiced at having learned from experience. It's a funny thing about learning from experience. I don't always do it, do you? It seems like making a bad decision and suffering consequences would prompt us to say, "I am never doing that again!" But no. We have a tendency to make a decision, suffer a few consequences, then turn around and do it all again. How silly is that? Very! Today, though, I've had such a wonderful result from what I learned last year that I've decided to learn from some of my other less than stellar experiences, too. I've made a list of a few things I'm going to be doing differently, and you might consider making a list of your own. Speaking with the Voice of Experience, it's a much better way to go.

Stay warm and may your water ever flow!