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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

December's Last Gasp

From Sunday night, through yesterday and into this morning, we lived inside the wind. It thundered down the chimney, grabbed hold of the window frames and shook them, yanked tree limbs and flung them at our roof. It moaned while pounding the shutters at the side of the house. As the pines out back bent toward the house under the weight of the wind, I abandoned my seat under the picture window and moved toward comforting ignorance in the front room.

We were blessed that our power was out for only two hours Sunday night. I will not complain about having to finish half-cooked spaghetti carbonara on the gas grill in the middle of the blizzard. Such a minor inconvenience—and it left me with a story to tell when half our town went without electricity yesterday too, some folks into today.

While we listened to music by candlelight, the ocean flooded low lying areas.  Five miles away, two houses burned as firefighters in survival suits held hoses and waded through waist high water. “Reverse 911” calls invited us to the emergency shelter at an elementary school, but instead, we listened to the reassuring sound of the furnace kicking in as we settled in for another warm night’s sleep.

The sun joined the wind this morning. By mid-day, ice falling from tree limbs exploded like small bombs as it hit frosted windows, but the accumulation of snow is much less than expected. A huge pine lays uprooted in the yard across the street, but did no damage when it fell.

All day long I peeked out to our own, still-standing pines and took deep breaths. My husband though, can always find humor. The storm started Sunday, the day after Christmas. With hundreds of twigs embedded in the snow out back, he announced that we are now caretakers of a reindeer grave yard.

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Robin said...

You were blessed. It sounds like carnage was happening all around you, but you were the peace in the middle of it all. Two hours of lost power is nothing in the face of fire, flood, and uprooted trees caused by such high wind. And your husband is a funny one. I wouldn't have gotten the joke if not for the picture. It took a second for my feeble brain to latch onto it as it was. Bundle up and stay warm. And be careful if you go anywhere to ring in the New Year!

'Yellow Rose' Jasmine said...

Storms like this one are so scary. It's good you can count your blessings and avoided any major mishaps.

Mary Vaughn said...

OMG! I thought you were writing a story. Here it's true and you're living it!
Glad you're ok and I hope that's just a joke from your husband -- it could get messy. :)
Take care!

sue said...

Hearing this first hand is so much more powerful than seeing it on the news. Glad you're all ok and able to share your experiences with us including the wonderful photo.

Keep warm and safe.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Wow. That first paragraph is so powerfully written. I love the image of living inside the wind. And the photo is gorgeous! Way to make art out of nature's fury!

glnroz said...

I have been thinking about all my liddle Yankee friends while watching the weather news. Glad ya'll made it ok. You made it sound like fun. lol,,

Helen Ginger said...

I have a feeling if I'm ever at a loss for a memorable way to describe something in a book, I should just send your husband a picture of the scene. He was spot-on the reindeer grave yard.

Colette said...

Liza, I managed to make it to Cape Cod on Sunday (to visit my Mom) just as the storm was picking up. We lost power for about ten hours, and were snowed in for most of Monday. The joys of holiday travel!

Wine and Words said...

It was so nice to read of you in your little nest of comfort...sitting by firelight while the oceans raged and homes fell to the hunger of leaping flame. And your photos are beautiful. I've flipped through the album :)

Mimi said...

Gosh, that sounds frightening.
We thought we were bad with big snowfalls, but nothing compared to what you've described.
I came via your comment on Never Growing Old, we're in the same boat!
So, you've a new follower now, I like your writing very much.

Jan Morrison said...

You are such a delightful writer - I could hear and smell and feel every bit of that! And I love the reindeer graveyard. Ha! We have had such mild weather - it is eirie.