One Caretaker's story of living (mostly) in solitude on a private Island on Lake George in Upstate New York, as told through daily photographs and musings/ramblings (well, daily in the winter; every four days or so in the Summer and mostly just photos in the Summer).
A Very Brief Glossary: GHETTO--Name for the cabin that the Caretaker lives in, a single story structure, about 220 square feet/20.44 square meters.
Living Conditions: End of October to early May, no running water, Island population: 1. Early May to end of October, running water, Island population: ranges from 1 to 20 or so.
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The Caretaker's Concern can be blamed on Wreck-Loose Island Publishing. Send all complaints to: WLIPublishing P.O. Box 1521 Bolton Landing, N.Y. 12814
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The Caretaker's Concern 2/18/08 Ghetto temp. 54 F. and steady. Island tmp. 35 F. Yesterday's L/H: 27/30 F. Current conditions: Calm at Island level, steady West winds aloft, mix of clouds and stars. Bright moon light.
Given the blast of warm weather today the Caretaker spent much of the morning working on things outside that are all that much more difficult when it is below freezing out. It was like a day right out of early spring. The one important thing the Caretaker was able to do in the morning was to remove most all of the ice from the steps to the main house, due to the mix of snow and freezing rain of late the steps had long since ceased being steps, rather they had become an icy ramp. Granted it was a ramp of just two steps, but they had become difficult to navigate and rather treacherous.
In the afternoon the Caretaker threw on his skis and went over to the mainland to shovel out some of the snow from around his car so he could then make his way to the Post Office and take care of a few things in town. Due to the warm weather there was an immense amount of water and slush on the ice, at times it was three inches deep, it was more like water skiing than x-c skiing. About halfway across the Caretaker realized that he needed to waterproof his ski boots again. His feet were pretty well soaked by the time he made it to the mainland, however given the warm weather his feet weren't so cold to be uncomfortable. After removing his skis the Caretaker sloshed in his boots to his car. After he messed around with the snow shovel for a while he got in his car and started it up. Unfortunately he made it about 20 feet and then got stuck. He had backed into the neighbors driveway so he could face forward while driving out of the main drive to the road, unfortunately the driveway was icy and there was a hump that the Caretaker backed over, when he went to drive forward his car would not come back over the hump, his tires just spun uselessly. The Caretaker turned the wheels in the direction he wanted the car to go and then got out to try and push, this was much less effective than he had hoped. So he got back in the car, then the engine died. Why that happened he wasn't sure so he turned the key to start the engine, nothing.
Silence. The Caretaker having already gone through this a few days ago, was not too pleased, especially now that his car was blocking the neighbors driveway. The Caretaker knocked on G.'s door but received no answer, since all his cars were there the Caretaker figured that G. was out on the ice. Having no other alternative the Caretaker let himself into G.'s garage to look for a come-a-long. The Caretaker found one and then returned to his car to winch it over the hump. After getting things set up, he worked the winch a few times, then it occurred to him that perhaps this wasn't such a good idea. At the moment the Caretaker's car was blocking a driveway, but not the main drive to the road, if he winched his car over the hump and into the main drive but couldn't move it from there his car would then be blocking all traffic. This would be bad in more way's than one. Getting over the hump wasn't the only dilemma, he also had to contend with a dead battery. So the Caretaker stopped working the winch and allowed the car to return to where it started. He then walked down the neighbor's driveway to see if anyone was there, no one was, so at least the Caretaker knew he wasn't blocking anyone in. Perhaps out but at least not in. With that settled the Caretaker returned to his car to figure out what to do next. In the end he decided there wasn't much else he could do other then try G.'s again to see if he was home, if not he would head out on to the ice to find him. The Caretaker needed to borrow his battery again. As it would turn out G. was home and had been the entire time, he was in the shower when the Caretaker first knocked. They chatted for a bit and then the Caretaker grabbed G.'s battery from the basement and repeated the process he used on Valentine's day. Once the Caretaker got his engine running and the batteries swapped, G. pulled his car passed the Caretaker's so he could tow the Caretaker's car out via a strap. This worked right quick. Then the Caretaker backed his car back into its usually parking space and shut it off. The Caretaker decided to pass on his trip to town, he had forgotten that it was President's day so the Post Office would be closed and the other errands he was going to do weren't all that important, besides, by this time his wet feet in his wet boots were starting to not feel so warm.
The Caretaker disconnected his battery and brought it into G.'s garage to put it on charge for the night. This way it would be good to go for his trip to Albany tomorrow. The return trip to the Island across the ice was even wetter than the trip to the mainland, upon arrival to the Island the Caretaker immediately changed his socks and boots--dry socks and boots never felt so good. Aside from getting things ready for his trip to Albany tomorrow, not much else happened.