Monday, August 29, 2011

Hurricane Carol

Not much of a storm, at least for us. I know that a lot of people lost power, a number of people died, so I consider us lucky that we didn't really get hit. We got a ton of rain and some crazy wind but nothing really frightening.
We never lost our power, which blew me away. I noticed after moving to NH in 1986 that if I sneezed forcefully enough, the power would go out. This pissed me off endlessly because I am essentially a city boy and I am not accustomed to inconvenience. I don't miss Massachusetts at all, never want to go back but I also don't remember losing our power every other week in the winter. And we didn't have to dump water into the toilet to go to the bathroom if we did lose our power. So I took it for granted I would be reading by candlelight, but it never happened.
During the week I didn't take the hype too seriously; Carol did. I worry about stupid things, she worries about important things; it's a wonderful relationship. Her nervousness increased right along with all the media hype. She talked about the storm quite a bit and it was obvious that she was worried.
I didn't get nervous until Sunday morning when I got up and it appeared this thing was really going to happen. Started to get concern in my gut. I like to slide through life; I don't want to deal with inconvenient things like broken windows and falling trees and no electricity and jobs. But Sunday morning it felt like I was going to have to be an adult. Of course Carol had already done a lot to prepare on Saturday while I was working at The Booze Emporium. So on Sunday we moved some more stuff from the lawn, pulled the grill onto the screened in porch and did some other minor stuff. As we were doing this I noticed a strange sensation. I felt calm because I had Carol to share the burden of what was to come. Something about all the years we have been together, and the tremendous respect I have built up for her, along with the love she gives to me and inspires in me, changed my gut feelings from nervousness to confidence. This whole long term marriage thing just keeps on taking on new dimensions for me. And I like it.
The media. After it became apparent that the storm would not be as bad as predicted around here, I was entertained watching the local "newscasters" try to make more out of the situation than was necessary. Because in 2011 if there is no news, than the news has to be manufactured. Again, I am not belittling the people who did suffer at the hands of this storm, I am commenting on the way media works today.
They were calling local police chiefs and trying to whip up some panic. But this is NH; these people know how to handle tough weather AND they are short and to the point; not interested in elongating a five word answer into ten paragraphs. "Is the weather horrific in your town?" "Nope, a little rain, a little wind." "Are people jumping off of roofs and drowning in their front yards?" "Nope, but we did have to cancel Bingo." "How long do you think it will take your town to recover from this horrible disaster?" "About a day, unless Mrs.Grubers cows get loose, they can be crafty and hard to catch."
You get the point. I also enjoy the helpful hints they put out there. Like don't approach fallen power lines. I was actually preparing to go out in search of fallen power lines because I wanted to supercharge my nose hair trimmer, but Carol stopped me, saying "Look at the ticker at the bottom of the screen. They say it could be dangerous." The woman is always looking out for me, and the media makes it a little easier for her by offering up information the common man couldn't possibly know intuitively.
The situation also inspired efficiency in me. I cooked a delightful breakfast early, shaved so I could look pretty for The Booze Emporium today, and washed all the dishes. All in anticipation of losing our power. Which never happened. So the chores were done early, which made the day long, slow moving and kind of delicious.
So we got lucky and I am thankful for that. If we lost our power or had our picture window shattered I would be whining like a little baby right now. I would just like to point out that Carol semi-panicked and I pretty much kept my cool. And I ended up being right.
Still next time around I think I might go out and buy some batteries and water and canned food.
Just to keep Carol happy.

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