Wednesday, September 24, 2008


What a time we've had in Ohio! I hope all of you are safe and less windblown than last week. I also hope those who lost power have it restored. We fianlly have our phone, cable, and internet back - after 9 days of doing without them. We consider ourselves very fortunate though, to have experienced such minor loses. In Ohio, there are still 8000 people without power. We're all wondering how our utilities plants were so un-prepared. We had lots of strong wind, but no water, so what was the problem?
Hurricane Ike left his mark on many states and towns and as I traveled last weekend, I saw some of the devastation firsthand. It wasn’t a pretty picture. Huge trees that once stood tall and proud were completed uprooted. There were roof tiles lying in front yards and large branches and debris lay in the roads, closing some of them. Emergency equipment was rushing here and there, and many traffic lights lost power, so drivers were forced to use common sense and courtesy at intersections, which wasn’t actually such a bad thing.

The scenes reminded me of the aftermath of the Xenia tornado in April of 1974, though on a smaller scale. I was seven months pregnant with my daughter at that time, and was recruited into service since I was working as an RN for an in-home nursing service. Had my doctor known I was planning to go to Xenia, he would surely have grounded me. That is precisely why I didn’t tell him. I went, helped as much as I could, and was glad I had.

Disasters seem to bring out the best in people most of the time. Neighbors help each other and offer food and lodging when necessary and people (for the most part) are kind and courteous to each other. My mother’s neighbors sent their two sweet little daughters to see if she was ok. The girls said they thought she might be frightened and offered to stay with her until the wind calmed. I was with my mother Sunday night and we visited by candlelight since she had no electric power. That was actually nice – no TV, no radio, just Mom and me.

My good friend Deanna lost electrical power and phone service, and a tour of her backyard revealed her power lines had come down along with a large tree branch which took the lines with it as it fell. Her home and Garden House were intact, though, for which we were thankful. Her power was restored last Saturday afternoon, but she lost everything that had been in her fridge and freezer. She took everything in stride though, and kept
busy crocheting, reading, and re-arranging her living room furniture and making it more cozy and inviting. It’s looking good Deanna!

The people with whom I’ve talked who are experiencing difficulty seem to be in agreement – all of us realize we are simply a bit inconvenienced, compared to what others may have experienced last weekend – particularly those in Texas. So we’ll try to be patient until all power is restored and the roads re-opened. We’ll continue to be courteous at intersections that have no working lights, and we’ll do what we can to help our neighbors and others in need.

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