Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Hacking, Scooping & Blind

I’m telling you up front that this New York gal's bucket-list would never include the desire to be on the receiving end of over a foot of snow and the loss of power for five days…and all this before the end of October.

We lost power on Saturday…around noon. I handled that with my usual aplomb…I remember sighing deeply and saying, “Really?? They said this was gonna happen. How utterly original,” to no-one in particular. Then I heard a disconnected voice...responding with, “What? Did you say something??”…and it was then that I realized that it was a snowstorm-miracle: Connor(14) with no-one else to talk to…was talking to me! I danced a little jig of victory, pumped my fists in the air and then coolly responded with, “…’Sup?”

We played cards. We played Trouble. We played Angry Birds. We played checkers. Then it got dark…and we got cold and bored. It was time for the power to return. Unfortunately, this was only day one…and it got worse. It seems the power loss also hit one of Verizon’s cell towers and we had no cellphone service.

So. Let's recap.We had:

  • No electricity
  • No heat
  • No cable
  • No landline (telephone)
  • No internet 
  • No iPad 
  • No iPhone 
Outside, the storm was raging. The roads were impassable. Oh, joy.

By Sunday, the storm had passed…but it left over a foot of the white stuff in its wake. The sky was bright blue…and everything else was white. Connor and I had barely slept. You’d begin to drift off and be jolted awake by the sound of branches cracking under the strain of all that snow. It was…unsettling.

By Monday, school had been cancelled and I was texting ToyotaBoss to see if we had juice at the office:

Me: “No power since Saturday. I’m cold. I’m bored. You’re the boss. Make it stop.

ToyotaBoss: “We have heat. We have internet. TV in the service department. C’mon in!

Connor refused to leave the house, clinging to the hope that the power would return any minute. I vowed to return in several hours with downloaded games, a full charge on my cell-with-no-service and some food. I arrived home again to utter blackness and announced that Dominos had a buy-one-get-one-free special so I’d purchased two…we could always freeze the…..left-…..Oh, wait. That’s right. Everything in my freezer is melting. By this time, it was probably colder in the kitchen than it was in my fridge.

Tuesday evening, Verizon restored cell service. I do believe I wept a little when I heard the soft *ding!* of my emails resuming. 

Wednesday morning, I awoke around 4:30. I’m convinced some part of my subconscious was searching for a solution to my concern for all that food going south in my fridge/freezer. Then it hit me: There’s freakin’ snow outside…lots of it. I jumped out of bed, threw on my down coat (left my pjs on) and donned my New Balance rocker-sneakers (the ones that are supposed to tone your butt?...but are probably not a great choice for walking in snow and ice. Hey, it was all I could find that wasn’t heels. It wasn't supposed to be snowing, remember?) and I double-bagged eight gallon-sized baggies…figuring the inner one would be filled with dirty, (possibly yellow) snow and the outer ones would be perfectly fine to be reused for sterilized, hygienic purposes…such as storing extra toothbrushes and such. I then needed to find something to hack away at the ice-encrusted snow-mound conveniently left by snowplowguy. That’s when I thought of the hammer. Oh, and I needed something to pick up the chunks of ice…since I’d temporarily misplaced my gloves. That’s when I thought of the spaghetti-server-thingie. My logic was that the ice chunks would slip right off of a regular serving spoon. 

Can you see my wisdom now? Of course you can. So, there I am….at 4:45am…hacking away at the ice with my hammer. Nothing was really happening until I thought to hack with the claw part…then the ice started flying. I filled my eight double-bagged, gallon-sized baggies and headed back inside. I threw five bags in the fridge and three in the freezer and said a prayer. I figured we were right on the cusp of losing everything…so that meant I had nothing to lose. 

The power resumed at 3pm that day. Connor was on the bus…on his way home from school. I texted him, “POWER’S BACK. ANSWERING MACHINE PICKED UP!!”…then finished with the words:


Words I never thought I’d say…


Anonymous said...

It may seem on odd question, but why put the snow in the fridge in the first place.

Alan W. Davidson said...

Glad to hear that your power problems are a thing of the past.

Har! "Take the snow out of the fridge." We in the north grow up hearing things like that.

On the odd side are:

"Take the snow out of that martini" and "Take the snow out of your underwear." Yeah...odd...

Gigi said...

You are brilliant! I would have never thought to use the resource that Mother Nature so kindly left for saving the food.

sage said...

We've only had one snow so far this season and I'm thinking it's been too warm to be almost Thanksgiving. Hang in there, December and January are coming! :)

Cathy Olliffe-Webster said...

Oh I'm jealous! Nothing like a big old snowstorm! You need to get yourself a generator, Mizz Thang - but I must admit, the snow and ice thing is rather ingenius. I would have just tossed all the food in the snowbank and then waited for the bears to eat it.

Slamdunk said...

Glad you all endured as a family Kathryn. We got some snow, but nothing like you all had. I hope this is not a sign of the winter to come.

kathryn said...

Roaringforties: Not an odd question. But with no power, the inside of my fridge was getting warmer and warmer by the day. I'd thrown ice bags in there on around day#2 but they'd completely melted. I was channeling my inner-prairie-girl.

Alan W. Davidson: Ha! "Take that snow out of your underwear." HA!! You are too funny. Yeah, I'm glad I don't have to add that line to my daily can keep your damn Canadian cold, mister!

Gigi: Thank you, my dear. I knew you would appreciate my genius. It was quite the harrowing experience. It took me almost a week to not feel the need to grab a flashlight before leaving a room! Harrowing, I tell ya!!

Anonymous said...

WOW, that's real Bear Grylls.

Shelby said...

awww thats rough! :( glad everythings back though!
The whole "snow in the fridge" thing reminded me of something my cousin said that made me laugh out loud. she lives in florida so she never gets snow... "If i spray water in the freezer, will it turn into snow as its falling down?" She was 16 when she said this, without a hint of sarcasm in her voice. yup, she was dead serious. we were all in the car and couldnt stop laughing. it took us about ten minutes to pull ourselves together and explain to her that the water would turn into ice.

ToBlog today said...

I feel your pain. In 1998 we had the ice storm of the century, and Andrew was one month old.

You could put your frozen food outside to keep frozen perhaps. That's what I do when the power goes out (happens frequently in my neck of the woods) in the winter, it works.

But no email, or cell, and when the ipad dies no angry birds, that sucks!

Alicia said...

Poor Kathryn! Good thing you're so quick thinking and you figured out to put that snow in the fridge to begin with.

wendy said...

So glad you're power was restored. Necessity is the mother of invention. Seems as though you made the most out of what you had. Good thinking,Kathryn :)

Anonymous said...

Well this post certainly reminds me of the time when I worked as a middle school teacher, we had a lot of power problems back then in TN. It was a great job but the pay was not enough for my mortgage. Now I am working from home selling import export goods online, mostly digital items and gifts for this upcoming Christmas. My profits have been looking great and I was able to pay off my mortgage also. Everyone can do this, work from home and earn big profits online. The question is HOW and WHERE to find info.

Jerry said...

Down coat, pj's, sneakers hacking at snow. Obviously your priorities were screwed up. We needed a picture of this. Cameras run on batteries....needed a picture.

Glad you are sorta' thawed out and are now sorta' ready for Thanksgiving. And I hope it is a blessed one.

Gay Guy said...

Sounds very "Little House on the Prairie."

Spot said...

I'm so proud of you for persevering. And also, the snow/ice in the fridge was pretty smart. I'd have probably just put the stuff outside. And then been invaded by raccoons, oppossums and possibly wolves.

Do you guys have a fireplace? How did you stay warm??

Hope everything (besides the weather) is going well.


snoble24 said...

we have not had snow yet here and in about a week it will be christmas. anyway it was a good idea to do that with the snow. i mean the snow would keep the fridge and freezer cold with it in there. defintly keeps your food from spoiling. id never of thought of it. now i will try to remember if we get a bad power outage this year

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