Saturday, December 21, 2013

Storms Coming!

My World Today

When I hear Ice Storm Coming I go into high gear!  All day today I have been making preparations.  I have been filling up water containers, doing all the laundry, filling the bathtub with water, and generally battening down the hatches.  I have a heightened awareness ever since the Great Ice Storm of January 1998.  We were here.  We lost power for 12 days and the phone was down for 4.  This was back in the day before widespread cell phones.  It would have been longer with the phone but my husband connected the wire that was lying on the ground with a couple of wire nuts and electrical tape...he is so handy!

The first 4 days of the storm in 98 I was home alone with my then 3 year old son.  My husband was out of town for his work.  I was pretty well off with wood heat and I had luckily left the bathtub full of water so I could flush.  But there were some lessons learned.  We now have a generator and we keep a supply of bottled water on hand.  We have more solar powered lights, a crank radio, and liquid paraffin for lanterns....better than kerosene!

Back in 98 I had my freezer in the cellar.  Now its in the unheated breezeway.  1997 was the first year we had raised our own chickens for meat.  I was going to loses them all to thawing if I didn't do something.  So I hauled them all out of the dark cellar to outside but near the house.  Then I broke a hole in the ice to access water from our pond.  I dipped heavy blankets into the fridge water and encapsulated the chickens with the wet blankets.  Luckily the temperatures dipped into the single digits so the water logged blankets froze and my chickens were saved! 

It was tough going all those days without power but there were some wonderful parts too.  I live in a "neighborhood" that is pretty spread out, about 5 families within walking distance.  As a rule we all keep to ourselves and like it like that.  But during the power outage we all checked on each other, share food, and one gal walked over a mile to a friend's house that had phone service and called out to let folks know we were all ok.  We had some of the best sledding ever on that ice.  Our 3 year old son took it all in stride.

I happened to have been reading Great Expectations by Charles Dickens before the storm hit.  It was kind of cool to finish the book by lamp light thinking about how he must have written the book under similar conditions.

So MAYBE we will lose power tonight.  MAYBE we won't have it for days.  We are ready.  But you might not hear from me for awhile if that happens.  

Here are some photos from 1998 to enjoy!

The Boyo could ride his scooter right on top of the Ice!

We collected Icicles to melt for cleaning water!

Cutie in a makeshift tubby!

More Fun with ICE!


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