I remember snow days when I was growing up–or ice storm days. In the early 1960s, when living near Chicago, we had the ice storm of the century where we were without electricity for four days. It was a child’s dream world. We could skate across the grass and we spent the evenings playing “tea kettle” or reading Winnie the Pooh by candle light. If you are not familiar with the Tea Kettle game, it goes something like this: You think up an action and then have others ask questions until they guess what you are doing. The questions come in the form of the following. “Do you “tea kettle” in the daytime?” “Do you “tea kettle” by yourself?” You get the gist of it. It was one of the few times that I can visualize my father home and playing with us.
In New England we have what I call, “no-electricity days.” We lose electricity regularly and for long periods of time. I remember hearing about such a thing in the news before moving here and not really understanding it. Here the schools can be closed due to no power. Unlike snow days, everyone can get out and around and ends up in long lines in Starbucks or the local diner for breakfast.
“No electricity days” usually follow a nor’easter storm where strong winds take down trees, power lines and other infrastructure which has not been upgraded for many years. I have collected photos over the past few years of the aftermath of such events, the most recent of which left me without power for two days.
If a nor’easter comes with high tide, high water or ice flows come with it.
They always come with downed trees that fall on power lines, windows, and back-up generators.
Thankfully, I put in a back-up generator when I bought my house and placed it away from trees. I was warm. I had internet. I could cook. But I could not wash clothes or use the dish washer and Starbucks was way too crowded.