Weathering the storm

I left my parents’ house at 10 a.m. Monday and got home roughly 11 hours later, after dipping south through Arkansas to avoid the ice storms and downed power lines along the I-44 corridor.

I came into a dark house, put the dogs out, and wandered out to the backyard to find icicles hanging from every imaginable surface. Amazing how an ice storm can turn ordinary objects into something extraordinary:









When I rolled into town around 9:30 p.m. Monday, the only spot in Red Fork with any lights on was Ollie’s Station Restaurant. My neighborhood was dark and silent, and broken branches littered the streets, some still clinging to trees and scraping the windshield as I passed. The roads themselves were clear, making it hard for me to grasp the magnitude of the storm.

Here at the House of the Lifted Lorax, our woodstove and gas water heater kept us warm and comfortable despite recordbreaking power outages. I got a lot of reading done by the light of an LED headlamp and learned a few things that will help the next time we have an outage.

I’ve got tons of photos of Jamie from my trip home, but Ron just got home from work, and we need to clean the refrigerator and head to the grocery store so we can replace the stuff that got too warm on the deck today, so I guess I’ll get offline now.

Hope you’re warm and comfortable, wherever you are.


4 thoughts on “Weathering the storm”

  1. It wasn’t that bad, although I’m a bit frustrated this morning, having just gotten a call from Ron, informing me that the power is out. Of course it’s a sunny day, meaning we can’t use the deck as a refrigerator, and of course we just went out last night (at 1 a.m. when he got off work) and bought groceries to restock the refrigerator.

    “A battery backup for our solar panels is too expensive,” he said. “It wouldn’t do any good if it’s cloudy,” he said.

    That’s OK. Old-fashioned iceboxes are cheap … and if the power is not on by the time I get home, that’s what will be sitting in the kitchen in lieu of a refrigerator, because I HAVE HAD IT.

  2. I’m sorry to hear you’ve lost power again, but at least you had the money to fill your fridge and it *will* run once the power is back on. Your sister’s refrigerator is dying. The defroster element has crapped out and requires unplugging so it can thaw out and will probably need to have that done once a week or so until it gives up the ghost altogether, which probably will not be long. It is Christmas, they have to go see his folks (and buy presents for all of them) and things are already tight for them considering the high utility bills Ameren has blessed them with and the fact that Jamie just had a birthday Saturday. The new element will cost $40+ shipping and your dad may not be able to install it, depending on exactly where it needs to go, and of course, there is no guarantee that it will actually run once it’s installed. Holy sh*t, peace on earth, where’s the Tylenol? If you decide to divorce your refrigerator, give us a call and we’ll come and get it.

  3. If I were left to my own devices, that refrigerator would already be on its way to Grace’s house, and I’d be getting estimates on batteries for the solar array. It’s dangerous to force me to live without something for more than 24 hours. I improvise way too well, adapt way too quickly, and have way too cozy a relationship with the Lehman’s Non-Electric Catalog. It’s a good thing I’m married, or I’d have run off and joined the Rainbow Family a long time ago.

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