The Storm of Summer 2011

...that title reminds me of what is known in these parts as "The Blizzard of '93". My youngest son was born in the middle of the Great Blizzard of 1993, and yes, it is a dramatic story.

But I'll save it for another day.

Today, it is official with our city's power company that yesterday's storm caused the most power outages in the company's history...ever...including the ice storm when I was 16 years old, the Great Blizzard of '93, and various and sundry other natural inconveniences we've experienced in East Tennessee in the last fifty years.

Tim and I are feeling sobered and humbled. Because we know how we felt last night, as we drove through a city that was in near-blackout. There were patches of power here and there, but we drove mile after mile of total darkness, nary a streetlight or store sign lit. It was creepy.

We went to check on the church building (it is fine) and had to choose a third route to get there, because choice numbers one and two were impassable. Very large trees had been uprooted all over the city, and were blocking the roads.

We took note of how eerie it felt, and thought again/again of Joplin...Alabama...the flooded areas along the Mississippi river...Arizona fires...Japan...

We knew our storm, though it was violent and scary for a few brief moments, was a picnic and a camping lark, comparatively.

So we decided to treat it that way.

When the power went out, it was just Tim and I. Wouldn't you know it, just as we were starting to get ideas, TEN people ended up here.

Not. Even. Kidding.

Within an hour of a very violent storm followed by a neighborhood black out, my house was blazing with candlelight, nine adults and an infant were making themselves at home, and a man from Korea was playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" with fluid beauty on our piano.

You only think I am kidding. I am not.

Then, board games were played by candlelight until well past midnight.

It got warmish, what with no air conditioning, but otherwise, once I got past the scare of the wind taking out three trees (two small, one large) on my street alone, one of them in my back yard...once I got past that, I adjusted quite nicely, and even found a way to read until the wee hours:

This is not a photo re-enactment. This was taken via cell phone camera, last night, well into hour four or five of our no-electricity-camping-in-the-house-post-storm-party.
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