Where I spray-paint my thoughts…

It’s Pronounced “Eye-Gore” …*


In case you missed hearing about it, Hurricane Igor swept across Newfoundland Tuesday. If you want to see some amazing pictures of the devastation and destruction, go here.

Our pictures of the hurricane look more like this:

We lost power for 27 hours and spent most of that time huddled around our trusty fireplace. It reminded me a little of the epic “Blackout 94,” where we lost power for four days in a winter storm, although I was much more carefree in those days as I didn’t have children to worry about. And back in 1994 I went to stay with Aunt Gertie, who had a fireplace.  Now Aunt Gertie is 95 and doesn’t use her fireplace so I was worried about her as well, and ended up bringing her over to our place for much of our cold, powerless Wednesday. It was actually kind of neat as she hasn’t been out of the house willingly in about 3 years and I thought she would never come to our place for a visit again. I think she enjoyed hanging out with the kids and Max.

Back in 94, when I went back to work after 4 days in the dark, I asked my students what they all did during the blackout. One teenage boy replied — and you have to imagine this being said in the flattest, most disgusted monotone possible, “We Bonded as a Family.” The sarcasm just dripped from his tone.

Well, that’s what we did too. Bonded as a family.  Sometime driving each other crazy, sometimes having a wonderful laugh together by candlelight, drinking hot chocolate from water boiled over the fire.

They say Igor did millions of dollars of damage and looking at the pics on the site linked above I can easily believe it. With a few hours in the dark and one tree limb down we got off very lightly, compared to those whose roads are cut off, those who are going into a second or third day with no power, those whose property was completely destroyed — and, tragically, there was one fatality during the storm. Given all that, we have no cause to complain. Here’s our tally of storm costs:

New sump pump: $200

Extra batteries for lanterns and radio: $60

Takeout supper from Swiss Chalet when I announced I was not attempting to cook another meal over an open fire: $52

Celebratory “The Power’s Back On!” donuts from Tim Horton’s: $6.49

Bonding as a Family: Priceless

*I bet at least half the people reading this blog can tell me what the reference in the title is to.  Leave a comment to say if you know, and/or leave a comment to tell me your own “bonding as a family” stories either from Igor, if you were here, or from your most recent natural disaster if you’re from somewhere else.


6 thoughts on “It’s Pronounced “Eye-Gore” …*

  1. In 1993 after our big blackout (five days), which followed the biggest snow storm in the Chattanooga area in 117 years, Julie commented that “You need to be really careful who you get snowed in with.”

  2. Aunt Ruth, whenever I think of you folks getting snow down in Tennessee I think of Scout and Jem in To Kill a Mockingbird, making the snowman out of mud and then covering it with a thin layer of snow. I hope Julie and Rob never had to do that.

  3. Thanks for the update. We’ve been thinking about you guys, praying for you (though I knew from FB that you were OK).

    Our big disaster was the flooding in 2007. We were stranded at home, but we still had power — and even internet! We had a very relaxing time, though I spent much of it on the internet helping people figure out how to get from place to place (i.e. which roads were open, which were closed but passable and which were absolutely not usable).

  4. I tried to do homework with my daughters this evening–there was no family bonding. I think I would’ve preferred a storm knocking our power out.

  5. Young Frankenstein!
    We didn’t lose our power during the storm, but a few years ago we decided to eliminate TV from our daily “diet”. The results were very positive. After the initial withdrawal angst, the kids rediscovered the joys of reading for pleasure, playing classic board games, building things with Lego, lingering after dinner just to chat, and chilling in front of the fire with hot chocolate and popcorn. We still don’t have cable (and thus no TV reception at all) but we do watch movies together.

  6. Yeah, we’re pretty much the same for TV, because we don’t have cable. But watching DVDs together is a big thing we do, so we do miss that when the power’s off.

    Of course it is Young Frankenstein!!

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