The fridge was buzzing…again. That high pitched drone that completely disappeared when you got close enough to shake it, rendering the shaking of it unnecessary. But the minute you walked away…. It was going to be the death of her.
Sometimes she’d shake it anyway. Shake it, shake it, shake it. And of course it wasn’t making the buzzing while she was standing there so she’d begin to walk away and just as she was thinking, “finally! I finally got it!” the buzzing would start again. Sometimes she’d shift it just a smidge to the right and it would stop. “Vindication!” she’d think, only to walk away and hear it brrrp-brrrp-brrrp and buzz all over again. So, obviously, she’d shift it a little to the left. That never helped.
Repairmen came and went all saying the same thing: everything’s clean, nothing’s out of order or out of place, perhaps moving items around inside would help.
Fat lot of good repairmen are.
The buzzing would sometimes begin to escalate and make wha-wha-wha sounds and the distraction of it was just maddening. She couldn’t read a book, watch television, scroll through the internet on her phone. Anything she tried to do she’d realize she wasn’t actually doing because she was really listening to the fridge.
She’d finally be down the hall in her room, in bed, asleep, desperate for an hour or two in between insomniac moments, and the next thing she’d know she was awake. Why was she awake? This wasn’t her insomnia, this was something else, something had woken her. What?
The damn fridge.
She thought about unplugging it at night. If there was no one around to open the doors the food would remain cold til morning at which point she could plug it back in. And why not? Perfect solution to the unsolvable problem. Only unplugging it required moving the beast out far enough that she could reach the plug. And plugging it back in required moving it out even further so she could pick the plug up off the floor and get between the fridge and the wall and the cabinet and re-plug it in. It was a different kind of nightmare that plug.
Plus the moving of the fridge was bound to destroy the floor. It was only a matter of time. Moving a fridge back and forth and not expecting it to wear grooves into the floor or tear the floor completely, that was foolish. And she didn’t want to have to replace the perfectly adequate flooring in her kitchen just because her damn fridge didn’t work properly.
The only other thing that would work would be removing everything. Literally everything. If there was nothing in the fridge or freezer the damn thing was quiet. So very wonderfully quiet. Maybe she could just eat out of boxes and cans. Boxes, cans, and the kind of fresh fruit she could keep on the counter. Never buy anything that required refrigeration. Never bring home leftovers. Never use condiments at home. Never drink anything cold or have a pint of ice cream for one of “those days.”
If friends came over she’d simply warn them before hand that all she had was a little handheld cooler with ice for drinks or something. She’d just have to remember to buy a little handheld cooler. And buy ice. How hard could that be? Remembering to buy ice on the rare occasions her friends came to her house instead of meeting somewhere or going to someone else’s house. Easy.
She could do it. Live without a fridge. She was sure of it. What did they do in the old days before electricity anyway? She’d read about it somewhere…oh, right, they had those beautiful wooden boxes. Freezer boxes? She couldn’t remember what they were called, but that sounded right. She’d get one of those. Only they required a big block of ice. How often? Wouldn’t that make a terrible mess as the ice melted? Why did they make them out of wood anyway, wouldn’t the melting ice ruin the wood? Maybe it was best if she just made do with nothing.
Winters were cold enough she could leave some things out on the porch. Summers she’d just do without. It would be worth it if she could sleep. Worth it if she could hear herself think. Worth it if it meant never having to hear another repairman tell her to shift the contents around.
“Or you could just buy a new fridge,” her friend offered.
~~~That’s one hour~~~