The first snowfall of the year has come early to Summerfield, and Leroy has trouble waking his uncle. Due to the war effort, and to combat fuel shortages due to transportation problems, Gildy has replaced the oil furnace with a coal burning one. It takes promises of Birdie’s famous buckwheat pancakes to roust the great man out of bed, and stoke the fire in the furnace.
We learn that Gildersleeves is having trouble with the town’s water department, and a hole in the yard is left open after water pipes had been worked on. Leaving the shivering family, Gildy visits his neighbor, Mrs Ransom, to check on the condition of her own coal furnace. Out of coal, and helpless, Leila is invited to stay over in Gildy’s house… in Marjorie’s room of course. During the visit the judge also calls on the lovely Leila, and falls into the open pit in the yard.
Playing the same card of helplessness and vulnerability that Leila did, the judge gets himself invited to Gildy’s as well. Is he just faking his injured ankle? Will the visiting Peavey declare it to be broken? Well now, I wouldn’t say that. In the end, Gildy finally gets a response from Clannahan, the Water Commissioner, but not exactly the one he planned on.