Let me just put a 'Rambling Post Warning" up right now....you have been warned.
Let's just start.
First, I love storms. I love the sheer awesome strength, power, beauty of them...wind, snow, thunder...I love them all.
Friday night we had one. BIG thunder, BIG wind and rain. The electric went out almost immediately. No problem. Light some candles and be happy. I wandered from window to window watching, enjoying. It started about 8:30 pm and continued to go strong until it was full dark, which only makes the lightning more impressive.
Electric being out is usually not a problem for us. We live in the middle of our small town. 2 doors down from the school. 5 minute walk to hospital and/or courthouse. Our electric is usually restored pretty quickly, so as the storm quieted down we blew out the candles, fired up the flashlights and read in bed as usual.
Woke up the next morning to find out we still didn't have electric. Curious, I quickly put my tennies on and went out to take my morning walk and explore. At the end of our driveway I see that it's a good thing I am walking because both ends of our street are blocked with downed trees and wires. Hmmmmm. Wonder what else happened....keep walking and discover that we had a BIG storm all over town. Many roads were blocked. Leaves and branches everywhere. When I got home we cranked up the emergency crank it up radio and found out that the entire state had a BIG storm and the governor had declared a state of emergency for the entire state. Seems we had a thing called a 'derecho' come through...from like Columbus to Washington, DC.
Second, as I looked at the downed trees I began to think. As the storm was going on, I was talking to the trees I could see and encouraging them to be flexible and remember how strong they were and how deep their roots were...I know, not normal....but all 'my' trees are still standing! Many of the trees I saw down had rot in their centers. Many had big healthy branches snapped off because they didn't bend, weren't flexible and I thought that life is like that. The people who stand strong in life's storms are flexible, rooted and have no rot in their centers...right? I think my center is healthy and I am rooted, but I'm probably not as flexible as I could maybe be.
Third, it took 4 whole hot days to get our electric back on and I found out that life unplugged has some benefits. I have been going through a season of unrest, floundering in the pace of life around me. Everyone, everything was speeding along and I couldn't get in, I couldn't join. I would get close and just get side swiped and left spinning and confused. I wanted to run away.
Then, no electric...life unplugged...everything slowed down. And in the dark and the heat, I found a way to get in. I got things done. I found my place again...my peace.
We spent evenings sitting on the steps on the front stoop reading until the light faded. Our neighbors sat outside, too. I got a glimpse of what it was like in so many of the storied I read and loved as a child, about neighborhoods with stoops or front porches where living in community took place...A Tree Grows in Brooklyn comes to mind. It was nice.
The rhythm of the days was more connected to real life and I liked it. Earlier to bed, earlier to rise, living in the rooms that were getting the most light during the day...
Now, don't get me wrong, I didn't like cold showers and only room temperature water to drink, but the rest of it I could work with ... well, at least for the 4 days we lived life unplugged.
I also love the way so many people shine in an emergency. I have seen big electricity fixing trucks and crews here in my town from as far away as New York and Florida....even today, the 4th of July. They missed their cook outs to help here...love that.
Anyway, all in all it was a good experience.
Thanks for rambling with me through this post...