A quick recount of a time I was home because of an icy storm, some say the Great Storm of '98
We lucked out a bit when it came to the Ice Storm of 98. We may have been better equipped, maybe slightly better prepared, but we also didn't lose power quite as long as some others even in our same town. Preparation for an Ice Storm, a winter storm or any looming disaster that would cause a power outage triggered survival mode in my mother. If you have ever seen Doomsday Preppers on the Discovery Channel, you might have some understanding of the prep work that went into ensuring our survival through even a small summer drizzle.
Survival means heat, water, shelter, and food, we had these in spades. Wood stove for heat, warm house for shelter, a propane stove, and a tub full of water filled to the brim for non potable use.
Realistically, we got off a bit easy and power was restored within a few days. Our little house became a mecca for dirty people without showers, a place to hang out for the cold. My time was spent outdoors, enjoying the lack of responsibility that comes with being locked down.
This was an extended Christmas break, we had gone back for a day before the storm hit causing us to hunker down for what came to be a couple weeks. Today, I think watching the news cycle through cancelations ten minutes before you need to get ready is under appreciated. The excitement of seeing your schools name scroll along the bottom of the TV can not quite be put in words, and in today's world of instant notifications its likely a feeling lost in time. The Ice Storm of 98 brought two weeks of thrills as the persistent nature of the ice proved hard to clean up.
There was hardship, something like 700k people had lost power, and not just for a few days, without power for weeks or even a month, the cold was a real issue. At least five people lost their lives and I am sure thousands were displaced in some way.
If you look hard enough at anything, you can find good. Community coming together to support each other is a beautiful thing. Being forced home and indoors can be a time of reflection, escapism from the normal daily buzz of life. Disasters mark times in our lives, giving us a milestone that can bring back memories that may otherwise be lost.
If you live in Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, or effected parts of Canada during the Ice Storm, there is little doubt you have at least one story to tell. Your story may be humorous, scary or boring, but you remember - as we all should, and I think that is pretty cool.