Thank You Sumter Electrical Workers!

TGIF ! I can’t say that enough after the week I’ve had. But more on that in a moment. Please be sure to stop by the Scribes and check out my post – Twitter-pated.

My poor tree!

I’m one of the over 840,000 residents from CT who had no power after the freak nor’easter on October 29. I won’t lie. It was hellacious not having heat or electricity for 5 days. We were lucky that our family and house came through okay. Our shed and the Maple tree weren’t so lucky.

Needless to say I had a lot of time to think while shivering in the dark, wondering how I would feed my family and stay warm at night.

Here are some of the things I learned:

1. No wonder our ancestors only bathed infrequently – cold water is COLD!

2. The gas grill is my new best friend.

Close call for my car!

3. There are no calories in cookies and other junk food when you are cold and that is all there is left to eat. (Okay this is a total lie I told myself so I didn’t stress about my poor diet all week).

4.  Never go grocery shopping and stock up the fridge with perishables before a storm (in all honesty – no one and I mean NO ONE in CT has ever seen 20 inches of snow in October).

Chillin' out...

5. Nothing bothers cats.

6. Some teenagers do want to go to school. When faced with five snow days before winter had even officially started, my teenage son was understandably upset. Here in CT, they have to make up lost days, no matter what.

7.   And last but never least  – The electrical crew from Sumter, South Carolina are my HEROES! They drove all the way up to CT and then worked in frigid conditions all day to fix my power. People are justifiably angry and frustrated with CL&P but I know the line crews are all working  very hard to get us all power. Thank you.

So tell me, was your week any better? And what weather survival situations have you been in? How did you cope? What lessons have you learned?

20 thoughts on “Thank You Sumter Electrical Workers!

  1. I went shopping saturday morning, so proud of myself for shopping early. My power went off at 2:30. 24 hrs later when I was still in the dark and freezing my bum off I left CT and went to my parents house. What I forgot about was all the food I just bought. We didn’t get power back until yesterday. My house smells faintly of onions and defrosted hot dogs. YUCK!

  2. I know we also went grocery shopping the day of the storm. We managed to save some food by packing every cooler we owned with snow. We had to throw out almost everything in the fridge and freezer. Double yuck!

  3. We had a generator left over from the old Y2K days – and it lit. And ran for six days. Thank goodness because we just got power back on last night.

    The storm sounded like a battle out there. Our house is in a grove of oak trees. Limbs and branches fell all afternoon and night. One tree at the rear property line came down. We were lucky, though. None of our trees hit our neighbors. One large limb grazed the edge of our roof. There’s still debris up there on the roof in the valleys of the eaves.

    1. I’m glad you came through the storm okay. And you’re right. We spent all night listening to tree branches falling. It was pretty awful. I didn’t fall asleep until 2:00 am I was worried about my neighbors large trees falling on my roof.

  4. I have been sending prayers to everyone this week. We were very lucky up here in the Berkshires. We got two feet of snow, but because of the colder temperature it was lighter than down below and didn’t do the damage it could have. I lost power for a day and we have a generator so we were virtually unscathed other than my husband spending five hours on snow removal on Sunday. Five miles to our east, and everything beyond it, is in devastation.

    As far as the cold goes, those of you who know me have heard me complain of my polar bear of a husband’s need to live in arctic temperatures. From October to May, my house is generally kept at a wopping 58 degrees. We heat our 2800 sq. ft. house with a pellet stove. Not that we don’t have oil heat or electricity, but my honey puts on a fleece jacket and is completely comfortable in these conditions. I have three layers, wool socks and a blanket over me as I write. My hands are under my armpits between thoughts. I’m not kidding, and I’m often thankful when a hotflash comes on. I am very conservation minded and love the fact that we only use about a tank and a half of oil ever year, so I am as much responsible as he is for the chilliness we live in. I figure I’m in training for armageddon when I will have to adapt to extreme weather conditions.

    I do turn the heat on for a few hours in the evening to take the chill off, but before bed, the thermostat goes back down to 50 degrees and I climb into bed with my 1000 BTU space heater of a man. He is kind enough to turn on the electric blanket so I climb into a warm bed, but if it weren’t for wool socks, I’d never thaw out. It is currently 56 degrees in my kitchen and 37 degrees outside. I do turn on heat when company comes:-)

    1. Wow. Audy would make a great Boy Scout leader. He would earn his Polar Bear patch in no time. I have to admit, I can’t seem to be warm enough, even with the heat back on. At least my brain has seemed to come back on line. I’m glad you guys escaped the worst of the storm (cause you have a lot of trees!!).

  5. We were out of town when the storm hit. My total respect and gratitude goes to Wagging Tails pet sitters who got to my house even during the storm to take care of our girls. Coming home was like working a maze puzzle. We have several huge trees down in our yard. We never lost power while one stree over on all sides did. We know we were lucky.

    1. I’m so glad your pets and you both are okay! And that you kept your power. I don’t know what was worse being cold for days or having to toss all our food!! Both I think!

  6. I was so worried about you! The worst part, for me, was having friends have to be evacuated for high levels of CO in their house. They lit a fire in their fireplace(as did we all) and never had before, so it was very dirty. The husband didn’t feel well and so took everyone out of the house, had them leave the house and called the fire department. When they tested the house, (normal level= 6) they came back at 19. I freak out every time I think about what would have happened if they had all stayed inside, but there are a lot of people who weren’t so lucky.

    And, as you can probably tell from my twitter feed, I am VERY angry at CL&P. Not at their workers, but rather that they are a monopoly that feels that they have to turn a profit, laid off a bunch of workers and have let their maintenance of the grid lapse, and have not paid their bills from Irene, all to show a profit. We are the ones who suffer for their selfishness. We have no say in how they run things and no real choice as to who our power company is. I am ready to stage an OccupyCL&P.

    1. OMG! Your friends are so lucky they left when they did! And yes, honey, I feel your anger too. I still have lots of friends and co-workers suffering in the dark and cold. My brother lives in Manchester and they still don’t have power. Luckily his in-laws never lost power so they’ve been staying there. As far as OccupyCL&P, you bring the signs and I’ll bring some hot chocolate. For those who don’t live in CT, we now pay the highest electrical rates in the US! And this is how we are re-paid! GRRR!

  7. So sorry to hear about your power outage and snowy conditions, Casey. Funny how cats aren’t bothered by what we find hellacious (Love that word.) 🙂

    Wonderful weather here all week. Blue skies and fall colors. Can’t beat the Ann Arbor spirit of Halloween. Lots of kids dressed up in fun costumes. My nieces were so cute. One a Cat and the other Alice in Wonderland.

    Hope next week is better for you.

    1. I’m glad you had a wonderful Halloween (if you post pictures – tell me where I can go find them!). I imagine you have some pretty tough winters in your part of the country! And yes, I hope for a better week for everyone. CL&P has promised power will be on for 99% of its customers by Sunday at midnight. We shall see.

  8. Our power went out Saturday night and was out over 60 hours. Lost everything in fridge and freezer. Power came back up late Tuesday afternoon. Wednesday I went out and sent a small fortune to replace all I lost in fridge … then yesterday the power went out again! Thankfully, it came up again last night. We made out ok during the power loss because I have a fireplace which kept us warm and I even cooked in there. It was like camping, which I am not fond of doing, and now I remember why! For those who remain in the dark, my heart goes out to them. I’m thankful to those workers from other states for helping us get restored and oh so thankful that years ago when I was an assistant boy scout leader, I took survival training.

    1. Isn’t scouting great? My youngest (the Eagle Scout!) never really complained about the cold. He told me he’s camped in worse. And because they go camping all the time, we were awash in flashlights and camping gear. My Eagle boy makes a mean grilled cheese on the gas grill. We got our power Wednesday evening. We finally went to Costco today. I was a bit nervous. I’m still paranoid the power will go out and we will lose more food. I’m glad you’re okay. We will all have to have a giant group hug tomorrow. I think we all deserve it!

  9. We were blessed here in our neighborhood in Fairfield, We never lost power, and we didn’t lose trees. But we visited New Jersey where it looked like a war zone. Trees and wires down everywhere. Going to a warm diner and sharing some food and family time together on the 1st was the order of the day. It was great to see color come back in their cheeks.
    We are prepared for the next one with a wood stove and kerosene lamps. And, extra ice in the freezer.

    1. I hope we don’t see another storm like this anytime soon. Otherwise I might go find a warmer climate to live in! I’m glad you didn’t lose your power (though your neck of the woods had to suffer through Irene and we got off lucky that time!).

  10. We fared pretty well. I had done up all the laundry Saturday before we lost power and were well stocked with groceries, and the important stuff like beer and wine! We have a small, ancient generator which my genius husband was able to keep going for us, so we did not lose the contents of the freezer or fridge. Unfortunately, a low voltage issue fried some electronic control on the furnace, so we were cold for a couple of days till the repairmen came, but I was able to cook hot meals on a Coleman propane camping stove and the gas grill. We ate in the dining room (we nearly always eat in the kitchen, normally) by candlelight and used the good china, since it had to be hand washed anyway. We spent a couple of fun evenings with friends whose power was restored sooner. All in all, it could have been far worse. As for other natural disasters, I was a kid during the blizzard of ’77 and remember snow drifts up to the second story windows of our house, but not a lot else, so I guess it wasn’t too horrible an experience.

    1. Suze, I hope you were using that camp stove outside, otherwise, I might have to bring my whip to your house! I don’t know what we would have done without the gas grill. That is the only way we had anything hot. I vaguely remember ’77. My mother told me that is when she decided to put in her wood stove. After more than 30 years, she actually removed it this Spring and gave it away. I know she was kicking herself!

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