Sunday, January 20, 2013

One Windy Night.

Last night was extremely windy.  The power went out at least once between 11:00 and 2:00, as when a large thump from outside woke DH and I up at approximately 2:20 a.m. (he looked at his cell phone to determine the time), both of our alarm clocks were blinking.  When they blink, it means the power has gone out, and come back on.

Being very dark, we could not tell what outside had made the large thump, but we could see, barely, the image of branches against the night sky out in the field, so we knew that at least the big oak--really big oak, DH cannot span one side of its trunk with his arms outstretched--in the field had not blown down.  The oak is so big and old it would be a shame to lose it.

We tried to go back to sleep, although the strange noises the wind was making did not make relaxing into sleep easy.  As we lay there, the conversation went something like this:

me:  "The wind sounds wrong."
DH:  "Yes, it's strange."

silence for a few minutes.

me:  "I'm trying to decide if I want to go to sleep, or go to the basement."
DH:  "mm hmm."
me:  "But it's January, and the sky is clear, I can see stars.  You can't have a tornado in Michigan in January, and you can't have a tornado when the sky is clear."
DH:  "Nope. It's just wind, no tornado.  But it sure sounds funny."

Eventually, we went back to sleep.  To be woken up a little while later by the sound of something metallic hitting the ground somewhere near the back of the house.  Now, the alarm clocks are no longer on (I had reset the time before we drifted back to sleep), so I know the power is out.  Eventually I get back to sleep.

We woke up just before 8 a.m. as the sky was becoming light.  Still no power, and the house is chilly.  The really strong winds are sucking the heat right out without electricity to keep hot water circulating from the wood boiler to the house and through the floors.  We get up and get ready for church, sans showers.

When the sun is up higher, and we can see out in the yard and to the barn, I discover what made the loud thump in the middle of the night.  The door to the chicken house, which is on the east side of the coop, has been torn off and now lies in front of the coop, on the south side.  Hmmm.  That's not good!

Long story short, after church DH and I had to install three new (more heavy duty) hinges on the chicken coop door.  He also decided, about 3 p.m., when the electric company finally gave us an estimate of when our electricity would be restored--Wednesday night--that it was time to break down and purchase a generator.  Without one, we, as people, would get along fine by bundling up and just telling ourselves we were polar bear camping indoors (DH and the boys used to go polar bear camping outdoors when they were younger), but our pipes would most likely be frozen and burst by then.  Tomorrow's high temperature is only supposed to be 15 degrees, and Tuesday's forecast isn't any better.

So, tonight, we have new hinges on the chicken coop door, which is latched tight against the cold and predators, and power to our heat system, fridge, and the TV.  So DH can watch the football championships.  Once football is over, he'll shut off the circuit to the living room, and turn on the one for the chest freezer.

Dinner was cooked, by oil lamp light, on the cook top (one of the reasons I went with a gas cook top versus electric:  so I can cook in a power outage).  We enjoyed venison steaks with sauteed onions and mushrooms, peas, and steamed sweet potatoes.  For dessert was no-bake cookies, also made on the cook top.  Just because the power is out doesn't mean we have to starve!

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