Apocalypse: an epic, life-altering disaster. Yup. That’s the last five days.
Friday, February 12: The weather forecast for my small, end-of-the-road town was for snow. Instead, we got freezing rain. Life went on, but the county shut down. That meant our little church didn’t get the food we normally redistribute later that day. We did get a paltry (but welcomed) 223 pounds of bread from the next town (thank you, Dallas Food Pantry!). We had potatoes, onions, apples, tortillas, and a few winter squash on hand, so residents went left thoroughly chilled but not empty-handed.
Late that night, it got worse. The wind blew extra portions of frozen rain. Trees creaked and moaned with the extra weight of their icy coats. Creak, snap, pop, crash! Limbs and branches dropped, sometimes taking transmission lines with them. The whole town lost power. Roads were shut or narrowed to one lane because of downed timber.
The next day, we found out firsthand how extensive the damages were. My husband and I traveled to four towns before we found a place to buy gas. By the fifth one, we were able to get propane. If you could find a place open, the lines at gas stations and fast food restaurants were unbelievably long. I thought I was back in the seventies during the gas shortage. Cell phones didn’t work, either. For the first time in at least a decade, I heard ‘All circuits are busy. Please try again later.’
It’s been five days now. We made do. My husband reconnected our old gas heater and propane tank. We have two generators alternately running the laptop, house refrigerator, sump pump, and battery packs and last night, the big screen TV and blue-ray player.
What I miss the most? Hot showers! By the second day, I couldn’t stand it and took a ‘saucepan’ shower. I heated water on top of the gas heater. You’ll have to believe me that the rest was accomplished by determination, not convenience.
We still don’t have internet. Email service is sporadic if I stand at the end of the porch or in the yard. We still have intermittent rain, so I’m porching it. I can’t search the internet, though, and I can post but not look at Facebook.
I started to get fed up with it yesterday. Now we didn’t have cell service! ‘Can’t connect to a Network’ showed on my phone. We drove to Dallas and picked up a signal. I called my daughter, told her the latest updates, then after grabbing some Mexican food takeout, came back home.
Still waiting for power. Will the world stop if I don’t have internet? No. Am I frustrated? Yes. What have I learned? I’m more prepared than I thought (lots of matches, food, and candles), but next time, I’ll have more movies downloaded on my Kindle and more battery packs for my flashlights.
Be prepared. Download a few good books in case you lose power, too.
Check out THAT MAGIC TOUCH, a sweet love story about a young woman brought up without electricity and other conveniences by her doctor dad as he serves the poor in the Appalachian backwoods, also part of Doctors in Love 2: Sexy and Determined box set.