Report from the OP, January 27, 2022

(Two housekeeping notes: One, while I’m not ready to show my real face, I think I’ve dropped enough information that someone could figure out the general area I live in. So I’m going to start naming the various chain stores I’m reporting about. Perhaps that will help someone else out. Two, WordPress has dropped WP 5.9, and it’s doing some strange things with what was the WYSISYG post compose interface. I think I’ve got this where it will display as normal, but it’s difficult to tell for sure. Comment if you see any issues.)

Good news – Mrs Freeholder does not have another case of Wuflu! We don’t know what it was, because once it isn’t Wuflu the doc-in-a-box has no interest in you, so no further tests to see if it’s flu-flu or just a cold. But that means I can go places. At least until the next snow, which is supposed to show up Friday night. 1-2″ with wind, but the amount has trended up somewhat in the last 24 hours. We’ll see what the next 24 hours brings.

So what did I spy with my little eye? A fair bit. I’ve seen 2 more RVs set up as secondary accommodations. One is done particularly well, with a gravel pad and a large storage building nearby. I’m seeing more and more of this sort of setup, and I can’t take it as anything other than one of two things. The first is a friend or family member has been priced out of the rental market, or perhaps their own home, and is having to do what they can to have a roof over their heads. The second is that a parent or other family member may not be able to live on their own, but assisted living is not in the budget. Either is not a good indicator.

I paid a visit to Harbor Freight yesterday. I wanted one of the heavy wagons similar to this. On the Email Reflector That Must Not Be Named, a couple of the older members have praised it’s usefulness. I have a trailer and an ATV, but sometimes what I’m doing doesn’t require that sort of motive power or carrying capacity. This would be a good in-between what you can carry in your arms and that. Unfortunately, Harbor Freight has cheapened the one they keep even more than what it was – now comes with no sides and no way to add them. Nice. Walmart on-line has a number of variations on the theme, including one with a dump function. I may go this route.

On the same trip, I also hit a brick and mortar Walmart. I was able to get several of the items on my list, but several others were unavailable or in short supply. Take plastic totes, the kind you use or organize things. There was pretty good supply on the larger ones, and I found one that suited my requirements. But small ones, say 2-3 quart size, were non-existent. There were some basket-like things, but I wanted something with a lid. Amazon has them, but at $7-8 each? I’m not that desperate.

The grocery aisles were in decent, but not great, shape. I didn’t take time to walk them all, but I can tell you that while canned chicken was in good supply (bought 2 more 4 packs), good ol’ Spam wasn’t. I got the last can of the Turkey Spam. Dried beans were thin. Shelves were not being fronted and there were obvious holes. I did notice other areas of the store being restocked, but no one was workng the grocery part of the store.

People, if you need to stock up or top up, it’s starting to get harder. Do it now.

Once home, Mrs. Freeholder wanted to do some grocery shopping. So off to Food Lion we went. This is the same one that Daughter sent in her report from in the last Report. I was able to find Pepsi Zero, my carbonated bad habit of choice, at 3 12 packs for $11, the same price as before all this nonsense started. I took 3 of the last 4 on the shelf. I felt like I’d hit a couple of numbers on a lottery ticket. Meat was in reasonably decent supply, but bologna and hot dogs where nearly gone. Perhaps people are using these to stretch those food dollars. Dried goods were hammered. There was canned pet food but almost no dry food. Milk, cheese and eggs were good. Bread was good.

At our next stop, Aldi, things were in good supply other than crackers. I’m pretty particular about my crackers, and this store keeps a brand that not only suits my taste but is 1/3 the price of the larger name brands such as Premium and Zesta. This has happened before. I still have one box on the shelf. Unfortunately crackers are something that doesn’t store well. I’ll try again in a few days. Hard to do without crackers in the midst of soup and chili season.

That’s it for this time. Out here.

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