March 3rd…the receptionist just called to tell me my doctor’s appointment had been canceled and rescheduled for Wednesday the 5th. I hung up the telephone talking to myself, "I just hope all this ice, sleet and snow will be melted off the treacherous roads by then. What a storm."

As I write at noontime, the sun is trying to pop out while snowflakes slowly drift by my kitchen window that faces my favorite place to sit and see just about everything that’s going near the black walnut tree so close to Gate Nine Rd.

I’m not too worried that my family didn’t make it to the grocery store before the ice storm. I just checked my cupboard. I still have an unopened loaf of bread and a box of crackers, bacon and a half dozen eggs in the fridge, and about one more bowl of delicious, homemade chili, which I can’t seem to get enough of.

I see Roxie has six cans of her favorite Caesar’s dog food stacked on the cabinet. There’s batteries in the new Coleman lantern and coal oil in the kerosene lamps just in case we are left without power, like the last ice storm.

My eyes are focused on two large sweet potatoes in a basket which I think I’ll try baking in my microwave; which, by the way, has become the handiest thing in my kitchen lately.

I remember when I purchased my first microwave oven…A Tappan, sleek and shiny with lots of chrome trim. It hasn’t been in working order for years, but if removed, it would only leave a big hole in the wall, so it now holds odd pots and pans that are rarely used. My usable one is positioned conveniently on the counter top.

When I got my first new digital invention, the microwave oven, like other new owners, we consumed a lot of baked potatoes, one of the first things I learned to prepare. Forget about fried or mashed, which we, as a family, dearly loved. Now we ate baked potatoes just about every day. But the "new fad" soon passed and I was back to frying, mashing and stewing potatoes again with gas.

I guess the last time I enjoyed a big, delicious and buttery baked Irish potato was a few weeks ago, served to me at Western Sizzlin.

I laugh to myself when I think about one day…my long-time and dear friend, Annette called me. She had just purchased her new microwave. She too was serving baked potatoes often…too often perhaps. She told me that Roy, her husband, had mentioned to her how good he thought a bowl of fried potatoes, "Like they used to eat," would sure taste good.

We both snickered.

"By the way," said Annette, "I baked a shoe box cake in the microwave the other day. That’s all the rage now. Have you tried it?"

"No," I replied, and now, years later, I’m pretty sure I never will. But who knows, since I’m giving my microwave a workout lately, I might do more than that after convincing myself that everything we eat doesn’t need to be cooked the old fashioned way…fried, stewed, broiled or boiled…on the gas stove.

P.S. The big, baked sweet potato was delicious.