Hurricane Irene

Whenever ill weather strikes, New Englanders glue themselves to the tube 24/7. Then, we all delight in discussing how useless and pointless the coverage was after the fact. New Englanders also love to complain that a storm wasn't "bad," as if they truly wanted complete and total annihilation. "Now that's a storm," they say. Worthy enough for a t-shirt, like the "I Survived Hurricane Bob" craze. We start trying to one-up each other, "in the blizzard of '78 I went days with my food in the snow" or "a tree fell over the driveway and I was stuck for ages" or "we bailed out the basement with a coffee can..."


But I'm a New Englander and a born Cape Codder. As in, born at Cape Cod Hospital and lived in the area all my life Cape Codder. And we're the worst offenders. Sure enough, I had my eyes stuck to the weather channel morning, noon, and night - even before the storm.

Sure enough, we were well prepared. I went grocery shopping on Tuesday. Thursday, we stayed up late cleaning the yard. Yup, up until midnight putting lumber in the basement, securing the garages, taking down the swings, and trashing the trash. We gassed up the chainsaws and the trucks.

Sunday, the storm was upon us. First thing in the morning, we lost a huge maple in the backyard. Thank god the boat was safe at Mike's work... it fell right on its normal parking space - just barely missing the playground, a tractor, and the skid steere. Mike was able to cut up some of it right then. But he was nervous about another old tree, perched precariously atop the hill next to the garage. It was primed to take out the garage and really taking a beating from the winds. Some of its higher limbs cracked and hung by some miracle of something.

Meanwhile, out front, a huge limb came off the locust, taking out the power lines to the house and ripping the box right off the outside wall. (This is a tree that Nstar cut off half of a few years ago. Now it's all lopsided and it still took out the power lines. Thanks, Nstar.) Luckily, we still had power for quite some time after that. And then our luck ran out - off by 3pm.

And it's still off. Now I'm regretting that huge food shopping trip. According to the National Food Inspection folks, food in an unopened fridge with no power is good only for 4 hours. Here we are at over 24 with a possibly 8 day wait ahead of us. Thank god for phones, or I would have never been able to check the weather.