DiningDiarySquare-150x150 Thursday, December 14, 2017. The Stove Goes On Strike. Earlier in the day when the Eat Club Gala took place came something new for me to worry about. “Take a look at this,” I was greeted by Mary Ann, who was cleaning off the kitchen’s central counter. What concerned her was that there was very little heat coming out of any of the burners. The first thing that came to my mind was that perhaps a circuit breaker had tripped. I went outside and indeed found one of the breakers was loose. I reset the switch, and checked to see if any of the others had the same problem. It was just the one. I went back inside and found that things were find. But they weren’t for long. When I tried to heat the milk for my cafĂ© au lait, the breaker tripped again. Not a good sign.

Before continuing with this saga, I must answer what I’ve been asked by a number of readers and radio listeners. What am I doing with an all-electric kitchen? Haven’t I said on numerous occasions that gas is the only way to go indoor cookery? (The Big Green Egg takes care of the outdoors.)

Why yes, I have made that point. But the Cool Water Ranch is at least a mile and a half from the nearest gas pipeline, and it doesn’t seem as though it will get closer anytime soon. As for propane or the like, MA will not hear of a tank on the premises.

We called an electrician. He said that we needed to replace the entire panel of breakers, and that this will cost $4200. Gasp! But with Christmas coming (and we volunteered to host Christmas dinner for our families, and Jude and company are coming in too).

The lady across the road to the rescue! She has a friend who is an electrician, and he has done all her work for many years. He is a classic country guy, not bothered by our dogs, not afraid to call a spade a spade. Which in this case was that the breaker panel did indeed need to be removed and replaced. After all, it’s over thirty years old, and is in the weather. But when he figured what this would cost, his estimate was so appealing that I will surely add something extra to his check. It all put me in a good mood to bring with me to the Eat Club Gala tonight. About which I have already reported.