Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Electricity (The Big Power Outage)

Yes, we were one of the 250,000+ people in Tulsa, Oklahoma who were without power for the week of December 10. Our power was out for seven days. It was cold, it was annoying, it made us very grateful for our electricity when it came back on Monday December 17 at 1:00 p.m.

This (below) is one of our pin oak trees in the front yard. The branch touching the driveway did eventually snap. It normally hung just above our roofline. Luckily the tree is planted far enough away that it only touched the window.

The kids were amazed by the amount of ice built up, more than they've ever seen in their lives. The basketball goal was stiffly frozen in a windblown position.

The view out of our front window, while beautiful, was also awe-inspiring.

Added - this picture of the aftermath in our back yard. These trees and others along our fenceline - which would normally be standing tall, limbs stretchingyes high into the sky well above the uppermost limit of this photo - account for the greatest part of the tangled mass of limbs now resting on our curbside.

The rain had started Saturday and the ice load on the trees built up slowly for two days. The eerie silence was puntuated by occasional loud cracking all through the night Sunday, and sure enough, our power went off at about 4 am.

Convoys of utility trucks came into town. We waved madly to Ohio crews we passed on the highway, and signaled sign language thank yous to local and Louisiana teams in our neighborhood a few days later. Today I stopped by the local Sears and counted over 50 utility trucks swarmed like bees in the parking lot. Everywhere you go you see stacks of limbs along the roadside, awaiting pick up. Our own front yard is stacked five feet high with limbs all along the entire front curb. Chainsaws buzz and buckets lift men into the sky.

The work continues as some homes still are without power, but the numbers have shrunk considerably. We are very happy to have our power back, and send thankful thoughts to all the workers that have labored tirelessly these long cold days.

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