Monday, August 10, 2009

Snow Day in Summer







By Belinda

It was a strangely hot day, in a summer that has been unusually cool. I wanted to take my golden boy for a walk, but as I left at 7.00 in the evening, Paul warned me not to go as far as usual--there was a severe weather warning in effect.

We set out, walking quickly. I thought that if I could just make it to the park and back, that would be a good run for both of us. I noticed the hush and the heat, and the darkening clouds overhead, but kept going. I had an umbrella in case the rain hit before we got home.

As we approached the park I felt reassured by the row of cars parked along the edge of the green. It meant a soccer game was going on. But as I got closer I realized that no one was on the field and the cars were pulling out, one by one. They were more sensible than I.

I turned around as lightning flashed and thunder rumbled ominously. As we raced for home the first drops fell and I raised my umbrella. Seconds later the rain had progressed from drops to shower, to sheets blown horizontally by a wind that had come from nowhere. I was wet, but Molson was drenched, and he shook himself every few minutes, as if to ensure saturation of his human friend.

We arrived just as Paul, with a very stressed face, was at the door with car keys in hand, about to go and look for us.

The power was out and as the thunder cracked up above, Paul said we should head for the basement apartment. He'd spotted a funnel cloud and didn't want to take any chances.

We watched and listened, as the full fury of the storm vented itself. I put a towel on the couch and Molson hopped up beside me, his fur damp even though I'd toweled him off. He got as close as he possibly could. He doesn't like storms.

Later, when the storm was dying down, we ventured outside to survey the damage. Trees were down and the wind had rearranged anything not tied down and some things that were. We heard siren's that stopped nearby. The road through Bond Head was blocked at each end by trees that had fallen on hydro wires. The storm was an unruly visitor, leaving behind a mess.

When Tiffany-Amber and Victoria arrived home from their dad's, we were looking after them until later in the evening, so they snuggled up, one on each side of me on the couch, and I read to them, by the light of a candle and a camping lantern, from Tiger Rising by Kate di Camillo. At the end of every short chapter I paused and waited for the eager, "Another chapter, please," until at last, Tiffany-Amber said, "Done!"

We went to bed in a house silent, with no hum of appliances. Outside, the dark was deep, with no light in sight. We all hoped for hydro in the morning.

Morning came but hydro didn't. There was no hot water, but there was water--I was grateful for that. I washed quickly and got ready for the day. It was a vacation day that I planned to use for much needed organizing and cleaning in our house--an ongoing project. Paul ventured into the outer world--the nearby town of Bradford, where the power was on--and returned bearing toasted bagels and steaming cups of coffee--an unexpected treat that seemed utterly delicious.

Later I went to Newmarket for lunch with my friend Irene. I came home with supplies of more battery operated lanterns and a coleman burner, resigned to at least another 24 hours before power came back on as our next door neighbour had said it could be two days.

As I walked through the door though, I heard the hum of air conditioning. We had power! It had come back on at noon.

It is amazing how 16 hours without hydro can make you appreciate it when you have it again. I turned on the tap and marveled that hot water came out. I turned on the dishwasher full of dirty dishes and of course, I put on the kettle for a cup of tea!

Thank you, those who worried about what might have happened to me, and to Susan, for putting up the message after we talked on the phone. As she said, this felt like a snow day in summer.

Today's Family Story is coming. It'll be there for tomorrow. Blessings and love!

2 comments:

Angcat said...

I loved your descriptions Belinda. They were vivid and fast moving, just like the storm was, and like you and Molson were in the storm.

Belinda said...

Thank you Ang! :)