So we're nearing the end of September. Leaves are starting to change color. We had the last watery ears of corn from the farm stand up-town. The neighbors are placing pumpkins on their front stoops.
It is an election year. The economy is pitiful. We're paying over $3/gallon of gas and over $3/gallon of milk. National morale is low, and sinking. Not even the possibility of electing the country's first black president can raise peoples' spirits. Unemployment is higher than it has ever been and we are looking at a long, cold, harsh winter in this high-cost of living area we call New England.
My husband and I are counting our blessings while we carefully monitor our combined physical and financial standing. He suffers chronic health problems and although we hope for an early retirement for him, unexpected job loss due would be devastating. I check the job listings regularly, seriously weighing the options of moving away from a job I love in order to make a few extra bucks each month, just in case.
We've done as much as we can to keep the house weather proof, having had work done on the foundation this summer and having had an energy audit done by the state. We are waiting for bids on insulation for the attic and basement and we hope to get that done before the snow flies. We have locked in to a price on heating fuel and will keep our fingers crossed that the small locally owned oil company we chose will not be forced to sell out to the regional oil overlords like our last company did.
I can't imagine how we would make ends meet if I could only mow lawns or drive a school bus. I feel sorry for the families who highest earner is making $8 or $10 or $12 an hour. I cannot imagine what it must feel like to be facing winter with energy prices as they are with that level of income. Scary. Scary as all hell.