St. Elmo News

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By The Staff

Thursday, January 16
• Vit-Em-In Sunday school class of First United Methodist Church will not have a potluck this month.
• The St. Elmo Public Library District Board rescheduled meeting is for 7 p.m. in the St. Elmo Public Library.
Saturday, January 18
• Weather permitting, the St. Elmo Community Clothes Closet may be open from 9 a.m.-noon in the First United Methodist Church Parsonage.
Monday, January 20
• Historical Vandalia Inc. Board, 6:30 p.m., Fayette County Museum, Vandalia.
• St. Elmo Board of Education, 7:30 p.m., Unit Office.
Wednesday, January 22
• Royal Neighbors of America #5784, 1 p.m., Phillips Building..
• Reverb Youth, 6 p.m., St. Elmo Christian Church.
Thursday, January 23
• The St. Elmo Unit of Home and Communication, 1:30 p.m., in the home of Anna Jean Rhodes.
Rhodes-Side Gleanings on Cancellations
The about 12-inch snow that fell during the day of Jan. 5, the bitter cold temperatures of below zero and the high winds the next day causing the snow to drift are the reasons that there were cancellations of most of the meetings that were scheduled to be held during the week.
There were no church services on Sunday, Jan. 5.
The last day of school for St. Elmo students before Christmas was Dec. 19. The teacher in-service scheduled for Jan. 6 was canceled. The students were to return to school the next day, but it was canceled. School for students also was canceled on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, but the teacher in-service was held on Jan. 10.
I think this is a record of students not getting to attend school for more than three weeks.
The St. Elmo City Council meeting for the evening of Jan. 6 was rescheduled for the evening of Jan. 9.
On Jan. 7, the Friendly Neighbors noon potluck and the Council of Catholic Women meeting that night were canceled. The Fayette County Extension Foundation meeting scheduled for that night at the Vandalia Extension Office was canceled and is to be rescheduled.
Wright’s Corner Unit of Home and Community Education was not able to meet on Jan. 8 at the Loudon Town House.
For the Lunch Bunch meeting at noon on Jan. 9 at Mary Ann’s Restaurant, Gene Clark of Salem showed up and wondered why St. Elmo area people were not there – but he finally was joined by Arlin and Lillian Grobengieser of St. Elmo.
The Wheatland Unit of Home and Community Education meeting scheduled for that afternoon was canceled. The St. Elmo Public Library District Board meeting scheduled for that night was postponed until the evening of Jan. 16.
Mail delivery on Saturday, Jan. 4, was the last delivery until Jan. 8.
The St. Elmo Community Clothes Closet was not able to open on Jan. 4 or Jan. 11.
Maybe this week the organizations scheduled and rescheduled will be able to meet.
Rhodes-Side Personal Gleanings
I am sorry that many St. Elmo area residents were without electricity for several hours on Jan. 5. I am glad my electricity was not off, but I should have realized the water into my house would freeze.
When I got up the morning of Jan. 7, there was no water. Later that afternoon, the road was opened, and also my driveway, so Delbert Magnus was able to thaw the pipes by 5 p.m. I had to let the water run slightly to keep it from freezing again. I don’t know why I didn’t think to do this when the temp was way below freezing.
The day the mail came, I was able to get my van out to the mailbox to get the mail. When I got to the end of the drive, I turned south so I could back up to get close to the mailbox. When I left the mailbox, I should have backed up more before turning into my driveway. I guess I pulled over a little too much to the south, and became stuck in the snow. It was about 4 p.m. I didn’t think a car would come by to help me, and I didn’t take a phone with me.
If I had to stay in my van for hours I could maybe stay warm. I had about three-quarters of a tank of gas. But if the tailpipe was covered with snow I might suffer carbon monoxide.
I kept trying to get out of the snow – go back a few inches, forward a few inches, turning the wheels as much in each direction as I could, and I finally was able to go forward and get back into the garage. I don’t know how long it took me to do so, probably at least five or 10 minutes.
Thursday afternoon, I didn’t go out to get the mail. I had a dental appointment Friday morning and decided to wait to get the mail when I left. I did have my emergency cell phone with me this time.
My road and the one past the factory were still slick, so I drove carefully to get to I-70. When I returned back home that afternoon, the weather was in the 40s and it poured down rain between Effingham and Altamont. Most of the snow was gone from the factory road and the one south to my home.
I remember when we had bad winters three years in a row. There were large snowstorms in December 1976, and January and February 1977, and we had more bad winters in 1977-78 and 1978-79.
It has been quite awhile since we have had bad winter weather and we were due for one, but I pray the weather doesn’t repeat the 1970s.