On Saturday I had planned to visit my cousin Sarah, her new fiance Mike, my Uncle Steve and Zelma, but cancelled the night before because of a predicated snow storm. They’d been talking it up on the news, talking about possible power outages from heavy snow bringing down branches still loaded with leaves that have been late to turn and fall this year. I got back from the grocery store (and really stocked up) just as the first flakes began to fall. The flakes were really large, and the snow was heavy and wet. Sure enough, an hour or so in to the storm our neighbor came over to tell us part of our tree just fell on her car, and that we should move R’s car from the driveway over to the neighbor’s driveway with no overhanging trees.
Just as we finished up getting permission to use the neighbor’s driveway and moving R’s car, another big branch feel in front of the neighbor’s house from our tree. And then they just kept falling all afternoon. About two hours in to the storm (mid-afternoon Saturday), the power went out. We went to bed pretty early, because we had no lights, and we moved the mattress in to M’s room, so we could all sleep together. That made it easier to pull her in to bed in case it got too cold in the house overnight. We heard tree limbs falling all night, all over the neighborhood. Such weird noises. In the morning, the situation in the yard and the neighborhood was surreal. All the tree debris was covered with several inches of snow. The power and phone lines were ripped from the side of our house. We didn’t go outside most of the day because we were trying to keep the heat in the house, there were downed lines in the front yard, and our front door was blocked.
There was no way we were going to be able to get my car out of the garage without a chainsaw. Our neighbor came over to save the day and he and Ryan cleared the driveway. The neighbors had us over for chili on the wood stove that night, and then we spent another night in the cold and dark at the house. Monday morning when we woke up it was getting below 55 degrees in the house, and M was coughing a lot, so we decided we couldn’t stay there anymore. I packed up our stuff and M and headed off to work to charge the phone and try to figure out where to sleep Monday night. I spoke with CL&P over the phone Monday, to let the, know our meter was no longer connected, and they informed me that was our responsibility and we’d have to get an electrician out to fix that on our dime. I called a few, with no answer or a busy signal, and then finally found on that answered the phone. I totally lucked out – the guy had been taking calls all morning and waiting for his partner to finish helping his family and get in the office so they could do some estimates for people and create a plan of attack. I said, no need for an estimate – do what it takes and don’t gouge me! He said he was sick of sitting around and headed right over. He fixed our meter and the neighbor’s. I was glad to be able to line up the electrician for them, since they’d done so much for us already. As far as a place to sleep that night (Monday), turns out there were no hotels available within 50 miles or more of Hartford. We ended up spending Monday night (Halloween, which was cancelled) and Tuesday night at my boss’s house. Ryan’s school has been cancelled for at least this week. At one point my dad had a hotel booked through hotels.com for us, but suggested we drive by before hand to make sure they really had power. Turns out they didn’t. Even though they told hotels.com not to take bookings for them, they continued to do so! As of Wednesday, CL&P listed Sunday at 11:59pm as the deadline for when they expected to have our power restored. As of this writing, it’s Friday at 1pm, and still no power. That’s 6 days without power so far.
Next post – we dressed up as refugees for Halloween.