Tina really wanted Thanksgiving 2014 to be special. It was the first one since we rented our home, and the plan was to enjoy a special holiday meal, just the two of us.
If nothing else, it was definitely memorable!
Mother Nature crashed the party on Wednesday afternoon and evening, dumping a foot of heavy wet snow all over Southern NH. After leaving the house briefly to help my Dad fire up his generator (he lives just 7 miles away), Tina texted to let me know that we had also lost power.
My Dad’s electricity was restored within 2 hours.
Ours took 66 hours longer.
Instead of one day of giving thanks for all the gifts we have, Tina and I enjoyed nearly three.
We are truly blessed.
My Dad works as a carpenter and had plenty of kindling in his workshop for our woodstove.
He also has a woodshed which we’ve filled with firewood accumulated from fallen trees of the past.
On the second day we also borrowed his generator and gas can, which gave us light and enough heat in the basement to keep the pipes from freezing.
We are also the new owners of his old snowblower, which helped clear driveway and footpaths twice during the storm.
As we had buried all of our fridge and freezer contents in Mother Nature’s icebox (our deck), I made a trip to the store for instant (just add water) pancake mix which I cooked on the gas grill with a cookie sheet for Saturday breakfast (under a glorious sunrise).
Take that, MacGyver!
That afternoon, Tina and I make the trek to her mom’s house to use her shower. As I was the DJ for a wedding that evening, I figured I should probably smell nice in my tuxedo.
During a quick trip home before the wedding, the lights came back on.
Electricity never looked so beautiful!
While at my event, I drew a map and texted it to Tina, letting her know where I’d buried everything on the deck. Although we lost many items, I was thankful that some of it survived.
One thing was constant throughout the 68 hours of bundled layers and nearly frozen pipes: family and friends stayed in touch to ask how they could help, I saw neighbors helping each other to clear downed branches, work crews from as far away as Canada worked around the clock to repair wires, and the customer service team of our electrical service provider pleasantly answered the phone every time I called.
Was it an easy time for everyone?
Not at all, but the prevailing attitude I encountered was one of patience and understanding.
I did my best to make people laugh everywhere I went, knowing that it could be the only one they might enjoy that day.
The biggest laugh was at the grocery store (after it re-opened) when I explained the hot dogs and velvet cupcakes were for “a romantic evening spent watching the Woodstove Channel”.
This is New England.
Sometimes the weather really sucks.
Occasionally I think of moving, and then I remember just how awesome the people are here.
Then I know I could never live anywhere else.
Here’s hoping you also encountered helpful people and attitudes…and that YOU were one of those who made the storm more bearable for others.
Hey Mother Nature, please take Christmas off this year.
I’ve already seen enough of the Woodstove Channel to last the rest of the winter!