I live in Western Michigan, and last Wednesday, February 6, 2019, we had an ice storm – but our power stayed on. Thursday, February 7, 2019, at 12:20 pm EST, after three hours of the power blinking out and then coming back on – our power went out. On Monday, February 11, 2019 – we still had no power. Because we live in a rural area, no power meant no heat, no running water, and no stove. Even though we have a propane gas furance, it has an electric fan and starter – so the heat went off with the power. The house gradually lost heat, but by Saturday it was as cold in the house as outside – and Friday night the temps were about -7F. We have a well with an electric pump – so no running water. And the stove is electric, as are all the other kitchen appliances. Saturday we finally were able to contact my brother and I bundled up my cat, Moxie, my dog, Gouda, my elderly parents and we drove 45 miles away to my brother house for shelter.
Which means only my tablet and phone for Internet and no computer (I have a desktop at home). This is why there have been no posts for a week. Hunt and peck on my tablet pop-up keyboard screen is a lot harder than really typing. I hope to get power today! Probably late.
So update – power came back around 2:30 pm yesterday (2/11/2019). We headed home. Fortunately, there doesn’t seem to be any damage to the house such as burst pipes. We do have a lot of work to do – the dishwasher and washing machine (for laundry) were both going when the power went out. Everything in the refrigerator and freezer is toast. There’s all the storm damage on the property to clean up. My own car, which I park in the driveway, was nearly hit by two trees and that needs to be cleaned up. It’s a mess. But no lasting damage so I’m thankful for that.
Living without power for five days, and on the kindness of both strangers and family is a humbling experience. It’s like being a refugee in your own town, but we could go back. And, as I said, house and contents were intact – no damage. Imagine having to leave everything behind, knowing you can never go back. I literally cannot imagine what that was like, and my own grandmother was a war bride who left her family, changed religion, left her country, and was only able to take with her what fit into a steamer trunk and a small suitcase. I cannot imagine. We need to assist refugees. We need to help them. Demonizing people who have already lost everything with false accusations is not what this country was founded on. I just went through five days with no power and three days of crashing with family. It was unbelievably difficult (though once I finally convinced my father to leave the house things actually improved). It is much much worse for refugees around the world. Let that sink in.