2016-12-15 / Columnists

Babylon News & Muse

•It’s difficult to know what to believe about the incoming president. Every day announcements seem to be tweeted about appointments, some of which made a lot of people nervous. Certainly the so-called “spontaneous” phone call from the president of Taiwan that apparently took weeks to arrange and the subsequent reaction by China have perturbed many. All we can do is wait and see what actually happens, I guess.

•Are you all set for winter? The Farmer’s Almanac and two of the more reputable weather forecasters are calling for harsh weather in late winter and early spring. Have you made sure your house is snug and warm? The major problem I have in winter is frozen pipes. This year I may try to wrap them with heat tape or at least the grey insulation. A few tips: if you have cabinets on an outside wall, leave the doors open before you go to bed so the heat can circulate. If the temperature really drops, don’t turn the heat down much when you go to bed. I turn it down to 60 but after having frozen pipes, I’ll leave it a bit warmer on cold nights. In extreme cold, you may be able to prevent your pipes from freezing by allowing a trickle of warm water to drip overnight, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall.

Stock up on ice melt, make sure your snow shovels are handy and whatever else you need for a harsh winter. As far as ice melt, I use sand instead. The ice melt works, but the water re-freezes and sand doesn’t have that effect! It is much better on my porch, steps and brick path.

•By the way, I am still looking for a place that sells galoshes! (If you don’t know what they are, you are a lot younger than I am, or you grew up in a warmer climate!)

Readers can send items for this column to Mary Gallagher at 65 Deer Park Ave., Babylon NY 11702, c/o Beacon newspaper or via email at acjnews@rcn.com. Please put "News and Muse" in the subject line.

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