Monday, February 23, 2015

Ice, Ice Baby

Icemageddon swept through Middle Tennessee at the beginning of last week, leaving roads impassable, stores closed, power outages and a thick layer of ice everywhere.  School has been out all week and we've been pretty much stuck at home for the duration, which the kids have, of course, loved.  We did have a break mid-week when things almost returned to normal, but then the next wave of ice came.

I've spent over 4 years of my life living in the Dakotas, where we experienced massive blizzards that shut everything down for a day or two, but life always returned to normal very quickly.  This ice storm, however, was totally different to anything I've ever experienced before.   Because we generally don't get much snow or ice here at all, it takes a long time to restore roads and get things running normally again, even after a dusting of snow.  Grocery stores are chaos before anything hits - bread, milk and eggs always sell out immediately.  We knew this storm was coming so we stayed away from the stores, unlike most of the residents of Middle Tennessee.  After it hit, the ice was everywhere.  Our driveway was totally impassable and the dog refused to leave the house to go to the bathroom.  All our trees were bent over from the weight of the ice with their branches touching the ground.  Power lines were covered and trees and branches were coming down all over the place.  It was beautiful, but totally paralyzing.

The trees looked like Christmas decorations!
The dog refused to go near our icy steps of death

My poor lil' bent over tree!

When severe weather hits Britain, we're happy to stay home, have a cup of tea and eat some biscuits.  Continuing in this tradition, I'd stocked up on Hobnobs a few days before, so the kids and me happily munched through a couple of boxes during our captivity.  Chocolate biscuits make everything more bearable (of course, so does beer).  I'm so lucky that the Publix down the road has a British section where I can grab some goodies from home at extortionate prices if I feel the need, so thank you Publix!

We've already experienced a few major events as a family.  Blizzards in North and South Dakota, a typhoon in South Korea, Kim Jong Il's threats to annihilate us (again in South Korea) and an earthquake in Washington DC.  The worst event, however, was the great pumpkin shortage of 2009 at Osan AFB, I kid you not.  My fellow Osan-ites know exactly what I'm talking about.  During Thanksgiving and Christmas of that year, nary a can of pumpkin could be found on the South Korean peninsula, sending us all into a frenzy of trying to procure the goods to make our pies for the holiday season.  It got desperate people.  If rumor started that a tray of canned pumpkin was on the commissary shelves, we'd all sprint down there like crazy people to try and grab a can.  Most of us with family in the States ended up begging them to send us some cans, which my Mother in Law very kindly did.  A few months later when the shelves were finally stocked with pumpkin, every single one of us started to hoard for the future.  To this day, I always have several cans of pumpkin in my pantry for 'just in case', possibly a mild form of pumpkin PTSD, which I'm pretty sure my fellow Korea survivors suffer from too ;)   

Things are progressing on our move.  We'd planned on flying our dog to Seattle before the kids and me went, so that the husband could pick her up from the airport and take care of her in his bachelor pad in downtown Seattle until we got there.  But...  What do you do when your vet tells you your dog is in fact, too old to fly to your new home?  You plan a massive, mega, cross country driving trip of 2420 miles, so that your fur baby can still come with you of course!  I actually like this plan better anyway for selfish reasons, because I'd miss her the few weeks she'd be in Seattle.  She's my morning wake up call, my crumb cleaner-upper, my home security system and best of all, she's always makes me smile, even when I'm feeling grumpy.  It's going to take us a few days to do the drive, but it's going to be amazing showing the kids all the different states that we'll be driving through.  I'm most excited to see some of Montana, I'm not too excited at the prospect of the kids squabbling in the back of the van for all of those miles though, or at the prospect of my old lady joints freezing after sitting still for such a long time.  I'm pretty sure we'll see some crazy things to blog about though! 

So, it's safe to say that I'll be happy never to see ice again, although if we do, at least I'll always have a stock of pumpkin in the pantry for if we run out of food.  Have a good week y'all!

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