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  No Snow 03:57 PM -- Wed March 1, 2006  

No more snow. It rained like crazy yesterday though. Our dirt road is a challenge to navigate now. This weekend, we got a trailer to hitch to my car. It's very little and fun. We had to put it together (with my dad's help!), which was an adventure, and makes me a bit nervous about how long it will stay together, but I think we did alright. After all, we were supervised by an adult. So now we can haul our trash to the dump without having it inside my car, which was always a pungent proposition.

The real reason we got the trailer in the first place though was for the sake of our other car - the new diesel Jetta. We're going to drive out to the nearest biodiesel station - a scant hour and a half away - and pick up drums of biodiesel! Biodiesel is wondrous. It's actually what diesel engines were originally invented to run on. As you can guess, it's made out of plants. It's modified vegetable oil (you can also run a diesel engine on actual vegetable oil, but it's a little riskier, and you need a kit to heat the oil up before it gets to the engine, or it will be too thick). So with this hippymobile, we are reducing American dependence on foreign oil, reducing pollution, conserving the world's supply of oil, supporting the farm industry, sticking it to the man, and smelling like french fries, all at the same time! The hope is also that one day biodiesel will be cheaper than gas - it's much cheaper to produce, and they only charge more for it because they can. You can also make it yourself, out of waste vegetable oil (what restaurants throw away, or your own oil that you've used for frying stuff), for something like 40 cents a gallon... but that's a little more effort than I'm ready to put into it. You can get a book on how to build a biodiesel maker out of a broken-down water heater. I know, because I have the book! Quite a process, though. Especially the part where you go and set up deals with your local restaurants to take their used oil and figure out some way to haul it. I think I'll pass, for now.
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