Tag Archives: high winds

The Big Blowhard

4 Mar

Winter Storm Riley did a number on our area, that much is certain. The Squire said the power went out around noon on Friday, and it came back on Saturday at 1:30. We really made out much better here than a lot of other folks, but I certainly have even more sympathy for the people in Puerto Rico.  I worked on Friday and had hoped to run out and do a bit of shopping on my lunch hour. First, it snowed like mad, and with the wind whipping around at 50 mph, I’d have been driving inside a milk bottle. Then a customer reported all the traffic lights were out for at least a five mile stretch along the only road that went directly to my destination. So, scratch that. We’ll try again on Monday.
There were a lot of trees down between the office and the Rice Paddy. The road was blocked by a State Highway truck at one point, and an electric company truck at another. I could see a pole down a short distance beyond that truck. There were also wires down closer to home, where a tree hand gone down and snapped the line. A neighbor lost two huge pine trees; one had blown over and taken its neighbor with it. One house had half the siding off north side. A woman about a mile from here was killed when a tree fell on her as she was going out to the mailbox. The Squire said he himself nearly got hit, when a branch fell directly behind him. Ten seconds one way or the other would have been fatal. The wind was so loud you couldn’t hear anything else, so you couldn’t even get out of the way.
Fortunately, we have an older gas stove, so we were able to light it with matches; the newer ones have a “safety feature” that makes it impossible to do that. I don’t mind sitting in the dark, or being cold, but I draw the line at going hungry. The Squire had home-made soup ready when I got in and had brought the kerosene lamp from the bedroom to add to the one already in the dining room. Of course, the second lamp made the smoke detector go off. Fortunately, that one is not connected to the police – although I don’t think it would have made much difference without any power.

We had purchased a dozen small flashlights for the nieces and nephews at Christmas, but we didn’t get to see half the children so there were still a bunch of torchesDSCN0515 lining the mantle. I put a magnetic hook on the stove hood and hung one there, so we could see to fix breakfast, and another on the medicine cabinet doorknob, so we could brush our teeth. The Squire brought a bucket of water from the pond to flush the toilet. All the comforts of home.

We didn’t get cable service until Sunday afternoon, which meant we didn’t have a phone or computer, but we were able to use the cell phone, and had power to recharge it.  My inbox had almost 100 messages in it! About five were worth answering. ‘Twas ever thus.

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Watch and Pray

2 Oct

We seem to have dodged the worst of things as far as Joaquin goes, but we are still very concerned about the high winds. We’ve had rain off and on for the past week, and with the ground so saturated, we are very worried that a strong wind from the east could bring some of the trees from the other side of the steam onto the house.

I have our meds in my purse, the wedding pictures and sterling in the van, and The Squire has dragged a suitcase out of the attic. I’m not sure where we’re going to go, of course. Local son-in-law is adamant that he will not have Blazer in the house, and the vet is booked solid. We are certainly not going to leave the animals behind to drown, or worse, so we shall just have to see how things go.

This morning I went outside while The Squire was at PT and collected all the bird feeders and hanging baskets. We have a large plastic swan, tackier than a lawn flamingo, we float in the pond to keep the herons from eating the fish. (Swans are lovely, but one of God’s most vile tempered creations. A classic case of beauty being only skin deep.) The rain had flooded poor Gertie, and I was trying to fish her out of the water with the rake. I thought I had her close enough to the side of the pond to be able to reach her, but didn’t. I lost my balance and nearly fell into the water, which would not have gone over at all well, to put it mildly. At any rate, she is now on the front porch, along with all the other stuff. The Squire cleared the patio, and got the “floatables” up off the ground – trash cans, recycle bins, etc. His cell phone is charged, batteries in the flash lights, oil in all of the lamps,  sails furled, and hatches battened down. We’re as ready as we’re going to get.

We went up this afternoon and did the wash, and I got my hair cut. It needed to be cut before the surgery, and now it was getting tangled in my surgical collar, and just a nuisance.  I got a pixie cut, which will keep things under control for a while.

I am feeling much, much better, in ways I didn’t expect. When the surgeon called Monday night, he told The Squire that in addition to the bad disc in my neck, there was also a bone spur pressing on the spinal cord, and they had taken care of that, while they were at it. I am no longer snoring, and I haven’t had any of the lower back pain or other problems that have plagued me for years. I don’t think I have the restless leg syndrome that I’ve had for over thirty years, but I have been taking a sedative for that for so long that the one night I tried going without it, I couldn’t sleep. I need to get professional advice about backing down on that medication.  A lot of times it goes away for a few days after I’ve had a general anaesthetic, so we’ll just keep on keeping on until I can get up to see the doctor.

So for now, it is just a matter of keeping an eye on the winds. Watch and pray.