When we first moved into our house nine years ago, we quickly learned that living in a heavily wooded area is quite unlike living in city. Our home is located on the very edges of the ‘burbs. We aren’t exactly in the sticks, but pretty close to them. What we really are in is the trees. Huge, towering trees. Most of the time I love all of our beautiful trees with a passion. The one time of year that I’m not so crazy about them is in the middle of a storm. For some reason, these big old trees don’t like being blown about and will simply topple over. Sometimes they will fall into the street, someone’s house or car, and most frequently on one of the many power lines running through our neighborhoods.
As a result, we’ve become quite accustomed to power outages. They usually only last for a few hours sometimes going into a day or two. Or like last winter, leaving us with no power for a very long, cold week. After last December’s devastating storm, we started talking more seriously about getting a generator.
Of course it was still just talk as we couldn’t quite decide what we wanted. (who knew there were so many options out there?) We were torn between hardwiring a system in that would automatically start up when the power went out, or a smaller one that utilized detention cords.
A couple days ago we started hearing weather predictions of a big wind storm headed our way. We just looked at each other, shrugged and stuck our heads back in the sand. We could rough it again if we had to…
This afternoon the wind started blowing in gusts up to 60 mph. As lights started to flicker, I cranked up the heat to give us a head start on staying warm and wondered why on earth we hadn’t managed to make a decision yet. All I could do at that point was shrug it off and go about our regular activities.
After martial arts (Yep, I have dedicated kids!) we stopped in Costco to pick up a few things. On a whim I peeked in the aisle where they sometimes keep generators. There were three of them sitting on carts waiting to be purchased. Of course I had to check them out. As I read the side of the box, a breathless couple grabbed one of the other carts and said they would take it, no matter how much they cost. They had just come from Home Depot where all the generators were already sold out. As they wheeled off their prize someone else claimed the other generator. Both couples only lived a couple miles from us and had already lost power. Mimi decided to take matters into her own hands and staked her claim by sitting on top of the last box as I frantically tried to get in contact with of Shaun. (I have no problem making my own decisions, but we had been discussing this for years and it was only fair to include Shaun in this one)
Of course we decided to get it and simply wheeled it around with us as we collected things like dog food and milk. I thought Mimi was being silly for not wanting to leave the generator for even a minute. She was worried that someone else would snag it. From the envious looks and comments we were getting, she just may have been right to worry.
We never lost power tonight and the windstorm has died down. We almost can’t wait for the next one. When the electricity goes out, we are ready. ‘Cause we got the Power!
Edit to add: At exactly 5:30 this morning, we got an automated call letting us know that the junior high school was closed because of no power. I wonder if they want to borrow our new generator…
Bit O Life
One of many trees knocking power lines down to the road in last year’s storm. And this is just a little tree!