Power Outages is our theme this week.
I grew up in the Washington, DC area and except for usually short, rare periods during thunderstorms, we almost never lost power. I guess the power companies have top priority to keep it on, considering all that the world depends on is there.
I then moved out west, to Idaho for something over a year and then to Denver, where we also seldom lost power. I think places that have severe weather know how to handle it better, as they do out west with the clearing of the roads. They do a great job.
But here I am very near the middle of Kentucky and we have outages. Not as badly as it does north of us, in Louisville and to the north of the Ohio River into Indiana, (which gets all kinds of bad weather), however, we get enough. Most of the long power outages come during the ice storms which hit every few years.
The ice storms are beautiful, but terribly dangerous. The last big one hit and I was without power for about four days. Some nearby had their power out for about ten days; on the other hand, some never lost power at all. (We have several companies here with differing grids. It is confusing.)
We have a generator, which my husband bought when a hurricane came up from the Gulf of Mexico , jumped over us and hit Louisville and southern Indiana, (again), knocking all the power out for nearly two weeks. That was in the summer and my husband feared for the items in our well-stocked refrigerator and large freezer. I was more concerned with outages in the cold.
We have a large, clean-burning kerosene heater which, if we remember to bring it in in the winter, seems to ward-off ice storms and power outages. Let us leave it in the storage barn or garage and we end up slipping and sliding on ice to bring it in, because, as fate or Murphy would have it, an ice storm and outage happened.
During the aforementioned last storm, we set up the generator for the fridge and freezer, we had the kerosene heater going, put batteries in the radio and we were fine. We were more than fine, actually, since my husband had an unexpected four days off. I cannot usually get him to play games, but we played marathon Scrabble games by candlelight every evening.
One funny thing that happened was that my son had told me his wife had really risen to the occasion and cooked bacon and eggs on their own kerosene heater the first day. I called her the following day and told her that I needed her cooking advice. There was silence on the line for some time. When I started to ask if she was still there, she said, “No, wait…let me savor this moment.”
She never expected me to ask her for cooking advice and knew it would never happen again!
Scrabble aside, I wish no one ever has to go through ice storms again.
[FYI, I did a well-received five-part series on family emergency preparedness on my other blog:Tonette Joyce:Food, Friends, Family
maybe you will take a few moments to check it out.]