If you are like most of the folks around town, you lost power last night. If you're like an extra special few, you may have had some trees down in the street, blocking the roadway.
If you're like us, you not only lost power and had trees down on the street, blocking you in at home, you also lost multiple centuries-old trees to the high winds, that missed your house by inches—not to mention, missing the bedroom that we were using as our safe haven, by mere feet.
When the storms were approaching, like most we were watching TV, checking Weather.com, making sure we were out of harm's way. Then, all of a sudden the sirens blared and we knew it was time to take cover. Before we knew it, we were frantically gathering candles and whisking Ava from a sound sleep to hustle into a downstairs bedroom.
With candles lit and my computer lighting the now-powerless house, we were bunkered down, dogs and all, having a little slumber party. Despite the circumstances, we were having fun; Ava was enjoying the sudden awakening—she was placed on a large bed, surrounded by mom, dad and her two four-legged brothers. We gave her a flashlight and the room suddenly transformed into a scene from "Xanadu": lights flickering, flashlights swirling, a toddler jumping in the bed and screaming with delight! We heard a few loud crashes but nothing that alarmed us too badly.
Twenty minutes later, we walked out to survey the damage. Yowzers. Trees (HUGE trees) were split in half, laying throughout the yard, across our house, in the streets. I couldn't believe the damage that had been done in such a short period of time.
Neighbors from the entire block were out, flashlights in hand, walking up and down the street, assessing the damage. It was a bonding experience to say the least. (Perhaps because some of us weren't "dressed for daylight.")
One neighbor lost a mailbox, to which she cleverly and optimistically replied, "Well I guess I can't pay my bills now," which made us all chuckle. I chimed in with a "Does anyone else have a hankering to order a pizza?! I am starving!!" Believe it or not, pizza did sound incredibly appealing, considering the stress we all had just been through.
The reports say that this could last for several days. What?! This is nuts!
And did you know that if you live on the well, when you lose power your water service fails, too?! Yup. Which means no showers or working toilets for the Gilberts. This is going to be fun!!
I am starting to get a pretty good understanding of how the pioneers must have felt. No TV to entertain Ava. No power to cook, do laundry or vacuum (shucks!). Groceries (purchased yesterday, ironically) are all spoiling rotten in our refrigerator.
It sort of makes me wish we had already purchased that minivan. Heck, we could be spending the entire day in there—watching movies, sitting in air conditioning, charging our cell phones, eating from drive-thru's nonstop, camping out in there during the night. It could have been a mini-staycation!
It seems like all that we can do now is wait—wait for electricity, wait for the tree-removal businesses to start picking up their phones and coming out to help, and wait for all of this to just blow over (no pun intended).
Given the aforementioned hiccups and misfortunes, I must say how thankful I am that we are all okay. I have yet to hear of any close friends having any major issues. We are far luckier than folks in Joplin and Japan. I am definitely going to look on the bright side of the situation and make the best of it. So we lost a few gorgeous, gigantic, picturesque trees. It's nothing that can't be replaced (so long as we're prepared to wait 60 years or so).
With that said, FREE firewood at our house! Make sure to bring your own chainsaw!