It was late — past midnight, going on for 1:00 a.m. I simply could not sleep. The cats were snoozing peacefully on each side of me and there I lay — a cat sandwich — thinking of all the things I need to do in the morning. And now it’s half past 1:00. No help for it – I was going to have to get up and fix my sure-cure-for-sleeplessness, a cup of warm Ovaltine and buttered toast. The cats would not like being woken, but hey, who’s in charge here, anyway? Oh, yeah, right. Well, maybe they’ll forgive me. Of course, as soon as I snapped on the kitchen light, they were there, dancing around my feet and uttering little chirps and yowls.
“I am not getting you anything to eat,” I told them. “You had your dinner.” Smokey looked right at me and I could tell what she was thinking:, “and so did you.” “That’s different,” I said. She wasn’t buying it. She stationed herself in front of the refrigerator. “Will you move?” I asked, giving her a little nudge with the side of my foot. Blackjack had sprawled on the floor and Lop Ear sat in front of his food dish. Having been a stray, he is grateful for every mouthful I put in his saucer.
So, stepping gingerly around the array of cats, I managed to pour a cup of milk, popped it into the microwave, slid a piece of bread into the toaster, and pulled the Ovaltine out of the cupboard. When the microwave dinged, I pulled the cup out, spooned the Ovaltine in and stirred. I didn’t dissolve as quickly as usual, and I put it back in for another 40 seconds. while I buttered the toast. I transported all to the table being careful not to step on any tails, and Smokey stationed herself right beside me with her unblinking stare. Blackjack had moved to sit behind her where he could watch every bite I took. A double whammy.
I took a sip of Ovaltine and — drat — it was barely warm. What gives? Had I not hit the right buttons? Had I not heated it long enough? Well I wasn’t going to get up. It would have to do. Was there a smirk on Smokey’s face?
“Oh, all right!” I said with a bit = more than a bit — of exasperation as I reached for the treat jar.. I guess I’ve said this before, because immediately all three cats sprang to attention like they were getting ready to start a race. I grabbed a little handful of treats and tossed. Mad scurrying as they each twirled and leapt to grab something. At least it kept them busy as I took another sip of the barely warm Ovaltine and munched down my toast.
I did get to sleep eventually. In the morning I heated — or tried to — the milk for my coffee and it stayed stone cold. So a new microwave it will be. I scrolled through scores — close to a hundred– of microwaves online. I was specifically looking for a 1200 watt one. All the microwaved meals I get from Trader Joe’s say “prepared in a 1200 watt microwave.” There were a few and they were expensive and large. I finally chose a Toshiba 1100 Watt. It would be delivered on Tuesday. Good old Walmart and their two-day delivery. I reviewed the order, verified my credit card, looked at the image of the microwave one more time and pushed “complete order.” and just as I did … horrors! NO!! In that split second, I saw the complete sentence: “order will be delivered on Tuesday,” but then I read the rest of the sentence: but not this Tuesday, Tuesday of the following week/ More than 9 days away. How can I live without a microwave for a week? Over a week! I searched in vain for a button that said “go back,” or “I made a mistake”or “change order.” Nothing.
That’s why they give you a chance for a final review, you dummy, I told myself. A whole week. I’ll have to learn to cook. I’ll have to learn to heat things on the stove. Merciful heavens, it’s been years. And it involves pots and pans. And washing them. Nooo! I sulked the rest of the day. I told my friend Susan and she said, “maybe you can change your order to pickup instead of delivery. I’ll go with you and get it.” Not a bad idea. I checked on the Walmart order and amazingly it said, “your order has been shipped. It will arrive by end of day Friday.” Oh, much better I can do that.
I tracked it as it progressed slowly through the great state of Illinois and now they’re telling me it will arrive a week from Wednesday. NOOO! They can’t do this to me. Is it going by mule train? It occurs to me that before this saga comes to an end, I might just have to learn to cook.
But I survived. Did you know it is actually possible to heat milk in a pan on the stove and you can bake things in the oven? I seem to remember that from another life. Yeah, it can be done, but is darn inconvenient.
The microwave came, eventually, and my friend Lois came over, unpacked it and hefted the entire 36 pounds onto the counter. Whew! So many buttons! there are all kinds of programmable things and pre-programmed things like baked potatoes and popcorn, and I can even program the buttons myself for things I cook often it says here. I read the manual through three times and still don’t get it. I want something with four buttons: Cooking time, cooking level, start, stop. Why can’t they just do that?
It’s been three weeks now and I’ve finally got the hang of it. It’s bigger and faster than the old one and I’m still a little intimidated. But I’m grateful that I don’t have to cook on the stove anymore. They say cooking is a lost art and sadly, I think they just might be right. are stoves going to go the way of the dodo bird? Give it another few years and we just might find
But the one outstanding feature of this microwave is it has a “mute” feature, so no longer dings when I’m sneaking a smack in the middle of the night. Now if I can just figure out how to slip out of bed without waking the cats, I’ll be golden.