Behold! The tree that took out our power yesterday. As you may (or may not) know, pine trees have shallow roots and so when you heavy rain, followed by heavy wind (and snow), you are in danger of having fallen trees. And this tree fell and took the wires with it. It also spanned the width of the street so that those of us with no other outlet were trapped like rats. (Actually, by the time I took this photo it was after 3PM and the power guys were there with their chain saw cutting it up and getting ready to put up a temporary pole and transformer).

But we are lucky because we had fire.

And port!

And Allen Dean’s beloved Aladdin Lamp, which makes me nervous because I’m always fearful it will tip over and the fuel will spill and the house will catch fire. But I have to say that if you live somewhere rural and cold where long power outages are a potential, then these make a good investment.

But it has a wonderful glow to read by and gives off heat as well.

We are actually pretty well set up to take care of ourselves in these situations, excpet that I had no bottled water (only distilled water, which tastes like ass, and seltzer) and not enough batteries (and maybe a generator wouldn’t be such a bad idea). So that is my Sunday. And today it was just as cold, but sunny and the tree is gone and the wires all up and you’d hardly know that anything happened.

Of course, I’ve lived without power and water before, certainly for a lot longer than twelve hours, but I never thought much more than about how inconvenient it was for me at the time. We live in a different world now, though. And so I thought of the contrast between our situation and the earthquake survivors in Pakistan, many without proper shelter and clothing in the frigid temperatures. And I thought of New Orleans and how relief was so slow to come, whereas our relief was relatively quick. To be without, even for a bit, makes you think.

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