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The Night the Sky Fell

Our lights went out Friday night at 8:30 pm. We really didn’t think much about it because we were getting a little freezing rain and drizzle. So we talked with our two small battery powered lanterns lighting our TV room for a little while. When the lights were still out an hour later we decided to go to sleep early. We figured the lights would come back on in a few hours.  Nothing to worry about.

We were wrong about the electricity and we were wrong about the amount of ice falling out of the sky. Just before midnight we were awakened by the loud crashing and banging sound. Our dogs barked crazily.  It sounded like the sky had fallen or a train ran through our roof. Chris got up and looked out the dark windows and saw nothing unusual outside.

Twenty minutes later we heard more crashing sounds. The ice was falling out of the sky and onto the roof and trees so fast it was creating sliding, roaring avalanches of frozen water. The sound was terrifying.  

We had been in ice storms before, but nothing even approaching this magnitude.  It was ferocious and unrelenting.

I held both our pugs in my lap, trying to keep them calmer. The crashing ice kept coming every half hour as the accumulation was too great for the slope of the roof.  Crack!  It would snap.  Crash! It would hit the ground and shatter into hundreds of pieces the size of a fist. The sound was louder and more frightening as the night went on, hour after hour.

There was one time we literally felt our house shake. It was the loudest crash yet. I held onto the pugs as tightly as I could and both Chris and I stayed frozen and just hoping our house would stay together.  Chris got up to make sure nothing had come through the roof or the walls.  It was a new moon night, and that combined with thick storm clouds and no street lights made it impossible to see what had really happened.

Finally dawn started to lighten the dark sky.

We were able to start to see things in our yard. There were large ice cubes from the crushing slabs of ice that fell all night long all over our yard. The huge crash we heard was a portion of our neighbor’s maple tree falling and crashing down onto our deck and yard. The top part of the tree had broken broke apart on our roof.

If that part of the tree had come down at a different angle it would have broken through our dining room sliding glass doors and caused tons of damage. We consider ourselves very lucky.

Chris has been calling this an ice tornado because of the ferocity of the storm.  When we went out on our deck today we could see that part of the branch had been driven into our patio table with such energy that it bent the metal and is wedged in tightly now.  Maybe the idea of an ice tornado wasn’t that much of an exaggeration.

Photo taken today – Tuesday

The terror of the night diminished, only to be replaced with the news that we could be without power for two or three days.  We needed to keep warm since the temperature outside was hovering around freezing.  We have a wood stove that we don’t use often, but only a limited amount of wood.  We carefully estimated how much wood we had, how quickly it would burn and rationed it out.  We had a small fire in the morning to take the chill off, then a bigger one starting a bit before sunset that we left going when we went to bed.  We were still pretty cold during the day but we stayed bundled up.

We were able to sleep Saturday night because it was silent, blessedly silent.  Unnaturally silent because we didn’t hear cars going by or train horns off in the distance, or even the hum of the refrigerator.  

We didn’t have any little glowing lights from the modem or the computers, no light from the television, or from the street laps.   It was pitch black, again.

We were hopeful that we’d have power on Saturday, but that was not to be.  I sawed a long log into smaller pieces to fit into the wood stove.  Chris boiled tea water and made grilled cheese sandwiches on top of the wood stove.  It was so delicious.  We had been living on cheese crackers and protein bars.  We were getting dehydrated, too, because the water was freezing cold,  We didn’t want to drink it and make ourselves colder, nor were we willing to crawl out of our cocoons to go to the bathroom.  How do those people climbing Everest do it?

Yes, I was sawing inside our house.

Sunday dawned without power.  All we had were the sound of the chain saws as crews tried to remove the fallen trees from the roads.  Our Apple watches had run out of power so we didn’t know what time it was.  Not that it would have meant anything to us anyway.  We were saving our phone batteries in case we needed to call for help.  Time ceased to exist.  That was a strange feeling.

We finally had power by Monday, so we went out for a drive to see what the world looked like.  We couldn’t believe the extent of the damage.  The redwoods and the Douglas firs fared pretty well because their branches sweep downward.  The leafless deciduous trees took the biggest beating because their branches reach up.  I’m just glad they weren’t leafed out at this time of the year, or we wouldn’t have any trees standing.

These are/were the big Sugar Maple trees across the road from my house.
And here is a closer up view of one of the workers.

Every gas (petrol) station had lines out to the street as people waited to fill up their cans for their chainsaws and backup generators.  

Since the town was out of power for three days, a lot of food was going bad already.  Cars were lined up out into the street at any fast food place that was open.

We drove by a super market and we could see bare shelves.  No deliveries for three days makes a difference in how full store shelves are.  I guessing panicking people had gone down the aisles like a swarm of locusts, too.

Today we have blue skies, green grass, and daffodils starting to bloom.  If it weren’t for the piles of logs and branches lined up along the roads, you wouldn’t know anything had ever happened.

I’ve gathered a list of challenges and their hosts.  So if you know a challenge host, please direct them to my blog.  Feel free to contact me anytime.  I hope everyone will be able to use my lists.

Qi (energy) hugs

Cee

94 replies »

  1. That is a scary tale Cee. I did appreciate the indoor sawing photo with the pug assistant. I hope some of the wood cut in the street could be safely “stored” at your place. So well written I felt I was there. At least being cold you didn’t have to be concerned about medications. Hope you have enough supplies to get by. ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • So glad you like my sawing photo. The wood that came down in my yard will remain in our yard. Our lawnscaper is here now cleaning up the mess and using his power saw. 😀 😀 I may have lost about 6 months worth of insulin because of loss of refrigeration,

      Liked by 1 person

      • I bet the mouth was salivating at the chainsaw buzzing away effortlessly 🙂
        I guess you couldn’t open the door and get some ice to keep the insulin cool.

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  2. Sometimes you just have to thank your lucky stars for the angle in which the trees fall–in this case, not on your house. That is such a scary thought.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Good to know you and your house survived! I’ve been in this type of situation before and it’s serious. There are problems and power outages all of the US, but Texas of all places has been hit particularly hard. I told my husband I almost feel guilty that it’s so nice here! When we lived in Ohio, we had a wood-burning stove inserted in our fireplace and I’d scrounged lots and lots and lots of wood, so we’d at least have been able to keep the living room somewhat warm. But then you have to worry about water lines freezing and then bursting when they thaw and things like that.

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fortunately we never got super cold. Temps stayed just below freezing. They’ve been above freezing now since Sunday. So all the ice is melting nicely. I know Texas and Oklahoma got hit pretty hard too. My heart definitely goes out to them.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Glad you guys are safe! That is a scary tale. I was fascinated with your remark about the Apple watches. Glad I still use last-century technology. I will cross my fingers extra hard in wishing you well – that’s how it’s done, isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow. Thanks for taking time out to tell us about it. I’m glad to hear that you’re okay. The tree on your deck is frightening and I’m sure you’ll have your work cut out with repair works – but as you say – it could’ve been worse. Take care!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. You and Chris and the pugs really have had your share of high adventure in recent months. I was hardly breathing while reading that. Weird weather can be so scary. Glad you are well. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank goodness none of you were injured. What a frightful experience. I hate loosing power. we are on a well so when the power goes out we have no water. To me that is the worst part of power outages. I hope life will settle down and the daffodils will bloom in your town.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We had a house built in Colorado and had well water there. We lived in our house for 6 weeks (in November and December) without electricity. Long story as to why …. but that meant no water from our well. We were so grateful we had water and lots of it this past weekend.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. SO glad you two are okay. I’m very glad no trees fell through your house. Last week a tall pine tree fell across my driveway and blocked me in, and if it had fallen in a different direction it could have demolished my garage and my car. So I understand the thankfulness of trees and tree limbs falling the way they did. I hope this experience of yours will the last of your adventures for a long while.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The power has been a blessing. I was just reading that some isolated areas are still without power. That’s going on 5+ days for them. Thanks Alison for commenting,

      Like

  9. It’s great you all are safe. My sis in law lives in Texas and they are experiencing extreme weather conditions and power outage! Hope things will be better soon!

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  10. What a frightening experience Cee and so glad you are all safe! It’s almost surreal how soon the sky turns calm and blue again and here’s hoping the better weather is here to stay 💙

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Wow, Cee. I’m glad you and yours are all safe. Your story reminded me of the Blizzard of ’93 when I lived in Georgia. I don’t think I’d do well if I had to live for long without electricity and modern conveniences.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is amazing at how attached we are to electricity. Chris’s kindle worked and had power for three days. We don’t have many “real” books. I used to do word puzzle (word search) but haven’t had those in years in paper. So I had absolutely nothing to do. Played some cards, but …..

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    • Probably not, because it’s all attached to home or business owners. I’ll get plenty from our own house. We will have to get more wood for next winter though. We will have plenty in case this happens again. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Glad you made it through with no damage to the house, My oldest daughter lives out in the Damascus area and has lots of limbs down, there were a couple of trees that fell across the road so the neighbors got their chain saws out and got to work clearing it all, and she only lost one tree, it was a tree along the back fence line boardering her ptoperty and the neighbor to her North, fortunatly it fell towrds the neighor or it would of taken out one of her sheds and her greenhouse.

    As of this morning she still had no power and no water, but was going to see what happens later today.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh I hope she got her power already or very soon. I know there are a lot of people who still don’t have it. I am so grateful we got it back so soon in Canby. Woodburn (20 minutes south of us) I know they are having a hard time getting power back too. Your daughter appears to have had as much luck as we did regrading trees and limbs falling. Glad everyone helped get the trees out of the road.

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  13. That was some storm! I’m glad you got through it with your home intact. This is why I so badly want a generator, but we’ve never had the money to buy one. You storm moved across the country and will be here tomorrow. It will probably last two days and we are supposed to be getting about 8 inches, but it could be more — or less (if we are lucky). Rich, who writes for us, is buried under another 17 inches. These huge storms are insane and I fear they will just get worse. Take care of yourselves and your beautiful puggles.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aside from trees and ranches every, where are all back to normal in Canby. Where you live, I’d make sure I had a generator. I’m not to concerned living in Canby it self. If we lived out the city borders, we’d have a generator for sure.

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  14. Chris is right!
    This does looks like an ice tornado, although I haven’t experienced even the slightest of snowfall myself in my life.
    Good to know that you and Chris stayed safe 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I know other people have said this, but … “Wow!”. What an experience. I’m glad you shared this in so much detail because those of us who have never experienced such a storm and its aftermath would struggle to imagine it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much for commenting. I’m glad sharing our story might help other understand. No one need go through what we did. 😀 We are fortunately, there are still plenty of people and small towns without electricity.

      Like

  16. Never been in an ice storm quite to that magnitude. You are so lucky that it wasn’t worse for you two. It is always daunting to look back at the sheer magnitude of force Mother Nature can inflict. Amazing!

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  17. Our city looked much the same. Houses that were crushed by trees. People that lost their lives. It was so hard watching the news of such travesty from high winds, and really cold temps. Happy you are safe, and what a night! Blessings 💜

    Like

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