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BILL SAMPSON: De Ja Vu all over again

December 10, 2013

There I was, standing in front of the picture window, drinking my second cup of coffee and looking out on the snow and ice that visited us Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I got to thinking about another time with the same scenario.
It was Dec. 25, 2000, and the snow and ice storm hit our area with a vengeance.
I can well remember the sounds of the tree limbs breaking off the trees. Now, these were not little limbs, these were limbs that were 6-8 inches across at the base of the limb and 15-18 foot long! When those limbs broke off the tree, it sounded like gun shots!
The real bummer back in 2000 was the power going off. Gosh, we were out of power for about 11 days! Fortunately we have a fireplace that really puts out the heat. Some of our family slept in the living room on sofas, chairs and the like. My wife would actually cook breakfast on the coals in the fireplace. Really excellent food!
Speaking of food, after a day or so we removed the food from the freezer and placed the food in coolers out on our patio. The temp was below freezing for several days and that worked well. Refrigerated food such as lunch meat and milk, etc., we put in containers in our vehicle. Plenty of cool air there and it all kept very well.
The only down side was our reserve of firewood. We had about three ricks of wood available when the storm hit. We ran out of wood before the weather warmed up. My younger step-son and I went out and, with our trusty chainsaw, cut more wood from a tree that had blown down the year before. I believe that we used five or six ricks of wood before the weather turned warmer.
I do hope we do not lose power again this year. So far, knock on wood, that has not happened. We are ready in case it does. When we have power, we can at least just hunker down and read a good book or two.
I find it interesting how folks act and react to situations like this. In some ways I think that it is a good thing, mainly because people have to pay attention to each other more. When you are in close company for several days, you cannot help but pay more attention to those around you. I know that parents with several children will sometimes feel that they have a bunch of cats in a tow sack but it can be a rewarding experience nonetheless.
A word of caution. Please do not go outside unless you absolutely have to go out! Snow and ice, particularly the ice, can be very dangerous. I know that the temptation to go to the garage seems so simple but it only takes one little slip and — down you go. Broken arm or leg or worse. Not necessary and not a good thing to do. So, be careful, check on your neighbor, stay safe and let’s ride out this storm in a good way. ‘Til next time. God Bless!

Bill Sampson, a retired financial consultant, lives in the Cameron area. E-mail him at bills.front.porch@gmail.com.

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