20 February 2010

Lots of snow and the electricity carrot

So I haven't been blogging much lately (duh). This is due to a combination of inertia, work overload, and general crabbiness. If I'm crabby, I see no reason to share it, even if misery loves company.

Also, we were slammed with snow. Snoverload 2.0. Snowmaggedon. Snobliteration. SnowhelpmeGod. Whatever you want to call it.

We got almost 3 feet of snow in the space of about 24 hours on Feb 5-6. I know that the Minnesotans, Alaskans, and Michiganders who read my blog aren't fazed by that amount of snow, but for heaven's sake, this is Montgomery County MD. Where they have a total of like 15 snowplows. And a policy to plow the main roads down to wet pavement before entering into the neighborhoods.

This wouldn't have been a big deal, but my neighborhood lost power sometime that Friday night. We were trapped, because I couldn't slog through almost 3 feet of snow. We have a fireplace, but it does nothing to warm the house. We have a gas stove and a gas hot water heater. But it was too cold to take showers, because we couldn't dry our hair. And coming out of the warm shower into the frigid bathroom was painful. A bunch of our neighbors bailed by walking (slogging) through the snow about a half mile to a main road where they had someone pick them up. Not us.

We stayed. It got really cold. By Sunday, the house was the same temp as the outside. It wasn't so bad during the daytime, but the nights were horrendous. I have never been able to sleep with the covers over my face; I feel like I'm suffocating. But I couldn't sleep with my face out of the covers. because it was too freaking cold. So I didn't really sleep.

Sunday was especially hard, because the power came back on for 30 minutes, then went back off. Up to that time, ThePinkThing had been the model of good behavior. After the electricity carrot had been dangled in front of our faces then yanked away, she had an absolute tantrum. The laying-on-the-floor-and-kicking-her-feet kind of tantrum. I didn't blame her. In fact, I had a small tantrum later that night, when I was literally shaking with cold, unable to sleep and completely miserable. I just waited until I was alone to have it.

We were finally plowed and shoveled out on Monday and went to relatives in the next town. They had heat. And light. And food. And their 5 year-old granddaughter, who was ecstatic to see another kid. And a comfy bed without 5 layers of blankets and 3 layers of clothing. I was actually hot at first. I felt bad about leaving the cats behind, because they are pampered inside-creatures who were confused as to why we were freezing them near to death.

The power came back on on Tuesday afternoon, after almost 4 days. It happened to come back on while we were home picking up the cats. TheHusband was going to take them to the vet to board them while we stayed with our relatives. But then the electricity carrot was offered once again, and this time it wasn't cruelly taken away. We waited 2 hours before committing to stay at home. No biggie, you say -- we could escape if the power went out again. Yeah, but you see we had another blizzard on Wed 2/10. Howling winds, whiteout conditions, another foot-plus of snow. But thankfully this was lighter, fluffier snow. Not the heavy wet stuff of the prior weekend. Our power stayed on. Some neighborhood kids came by and asked if we want to be shoveled out around noon on Thursday (YES!). The street was plowed sometime that evening. We survived.

We learned something too. We need to have either a generator or a kerosene heater, just in case this happens again. I want to buy some old-fashioned hot water bottles. Since we have a gas hot water heater, we could fill them and be a bit warmer at night. I realize that I will never live in Alaska, Minnesota, Vermont, or anywhere where they get boatloads of snow. I'm just too wimpy to handle it.


Lorraine said...

{{{{{Oh, my dearest NeuronDoc!!!}}}}}

Your FB comment about it better now that electricity was back did not EVEN come close to sharing your awful experience. I am so sorry you had to go through this. Hugs to all for the nightmare. Technology is great when it works.

Not kiddin'. I'll help house hunt for you.

neurondoc said...

Lorraine, Phoenix is very alluring right now. For a whole host of reasons, you included. :-)

MWT said...


Glad you survived.

Dr. Phil (Physics) said...

"Kohler automatic backup generator."

That is all you need to know. That and...

"Six seconds."

Dr. Phil

Mary said...

Don't leave out those of us in Wisconsin! We've actually gotten less snow than you so far but our winter lasts longer so I should probably shut up now!