Aint nothin' but a dozer, but I want it all the time!
You just wouldn't believe HOW VERY MUCH moving from safe, comfy suburbia to scary, HARD, off-grid-on-a-Montana-mountaintop changes you! Night and day difference. It's unbelievable even to me and I've experienced it.
Case in point: One winter a few years ago we had a monster snowstorm and got snowed in here. I mean absolutely buried. We couldn't get our car or truck down the road if our lives depended on it and our tractor was struggling badly, trying to deal with the several FEET of snow we'd gotten. To say that I was nervous (and Butch frustrated) is an understatement of epic proportions.
Unbeknownst to us, word somehow worked its way down the good ole mountain grapevine ("Always On, Always Dependable") to one of our awesome neighbors. We'll call him Bob again. Why not?
I was busy grumbling and shoveling snow off the porches and Butch was on our trusty tractor making no headway whatsoever. I was starting to fret, wondering how in the world we were ever going to get ourselves dug out when to my wondering eye and utter amazement, back-lit by the morning sun, comes this thing of abject beauty around the corner - Neighbor Bob on his huge, green, stunning dozer, moving through that deep snow as easily as a ship plowing through water.
My mouth was wide open in shock. I couldn't have been more surprised if this had been Elvis himself riding an elephant into my yard.
I'd never seen anything so beautiful in my life. We were saved! Oh happy day! But even more surprising to me was how I felt about that big, gorgeous piece of farm machinery.
I WANTED it.
This life-long city girl who cared only about malls, shopping, doing her nails, pretty clothes, creature comforts like electricity, running water and decent restaurants, who had never even stepped foot into a Home Depot, suddenly had a gripping attack of ...
I couldn't help falling in love. It was always on my mind and all that I wanted in life now. I would give up all comforts, all I owned, my firstborn son, shoot, BOTH of my sons, all I ever cared about or hoped for. I might have even given up one of my Golden Retreivers for one (... nah). It was all that mattered to me now. I was resolutely focused. HOW do I get my hands on that big handsome hunka hunka burning' metal?
I asked Butch this question later who then looked at me as if I were insane. "Do you know how much those things cost? Even used??"
I answered, "I don't care. I must have one. We can sell all we own. We NEED it. Please! Don't be cruel!" On my knees, tears forming in my eyes, my hands clasped together in a prayer-like, begging position. I was emotionally in my own hellish version of heartbreak hotel with the steamroller/dozer blues!
Butch grabbed me by the shoulders and shook me, "Get ahold of yourself, crying all the time! It's over $100,000! Which we don't have! Snap out of it!" And he commenced smacking me back and forth across the face (okay, not really).
I suddenly woke up and saw my pathetic state. Oh how fast and hard the lowly have fallen! What had happened to me?? I went from respectable city girl to dozer addicted beggar in such a short time! Woe is me!
I calmly stood up, brushed myself off, patted my hair and said, "Oh. Thank you. I don't know what happened to me. I'm okay now. Really I am."
I totally lied. I'm still not okay. I'm still crushing on that dozer VERY badly. I mean, I'm ALL shook up. But I keep my newfound desires to myself and keep hoping. I even love Home Depot now! Hee hee!
Elvis would have understood.
Oh yes, this life changes you, completely and utterly. And I wouldn't have missed it for the world.
"Can't help falling in love, with, youuuuu."
-Alisha Brewer Nelson
Alisha is a city girl learning to live off grid on a mountain in Montana with a country boy, four Golden Retrievers, one huge Irish Wolfhound and one annoyingly affectionate cat. All make for an endless supply of funny stories, even if they weren't funny at the time. She is the author of The Funny Side of the Mountain: Snow Way I'm Going Off Grid! and Caller's Spring - The Sweet Life: Trust. You can follow her on her blog, The Funny Side of the Mountain, and on Facebook.