Sunday, February 28, 2010

Add these to your shopping list....

Things have been quite crazy around here, and I just haven't been able to find time to blog. Until this weekend, when things screeched to a crashing halt. It all started with a really ugly weather forecast Thursday night. High winds, driving rain -- not exactly normal for New England in February. A foot of snow would be normal... Because it was school vacation week, Diva and I were up late watching the Olympics when the storm started. As the first of many 50+ mph wind gusts came through, it occurred to me that perhaps sitting in our family room with windows on three sides and big trees nearby might not be the best idea. So we moved into the main part of the house to read.

A little before midnight I heard the first crash. A peak out the windows showed something might be on fire, but it was hard to tell. The wind was blowing so hard it sounded like the siding was being pulled off the house - we later discovered it was our empty recycling bin that had been pushed about 10 feet, sideways, and into the side of the house. Then came the big flash of light, followed by a loud crash, and darkness.

Kilowatt grabbed an industrial strength flashlight (where does he buy this stuff?) and stepped out onto the front porch. Lying across the middle of the street were the power lines that service our house. I dutifully called to report the downed power lines blocking the roadway. We tried to get some sleep with the constant wind gusts. At 3AM the chainsaws started - turns out there was also a tree blocking the road that the flashlight couldn't quite illuminate. Here's the view the next morning:

The trees took out our power lines, and our cable too. We have a generator, so losing the cable (broadband Internet access) was actually worse than losing electricity! At lunch we headed out in search of warm food and free WiFi. We noticed a lot of trees uprooted just like this one in our neighbor's yard:

After this, I realized I need to add a few items to my shopping list for winter weather survival:
1) Generac generator - no electricity - make your own
2) 5 gallon gas cans - because you have to have something to run that generator
3) Weber grill - because that generator won't run a stove or microwave AND your furnace.
4) Poland Springs bottled water - unless you are lucky enough to be on city water (we are!)
5) Smartphone - so when your cable goes out, you can still get news from Twitter
6) Small TV set, DVD player, and DVD's - so you can respond to "Mom, I'm bored..."

At the moment, cable is back, and we are running on hour 70 of so of generator power. But here's the view outside my front door:

So maybe we won't hit hour 80!


A New England Life said...

Looks like they're making progress! There's people everywhere without power still. I noticed schools have started canceling for tomorrow. As if the kids haven't been home long enough.

My husband and daughter picked on me for wanted to stop in a parking lot for wi-fi. Turns out a lot of other people were doing the same thing! I finally connected at the local library. While I was there the internet came back on.

Usually we are one of the LAST ones to get power. This time we were one of the first. It was our turn ; )


hulagirlatheart said...

Ug. This looks all too familiar. It sounds as if you're surviving well, though. I've wondered if you were "in the strike zone" for this storm.