So here I sit, as sad as it is, on a mattress on the floor of my living room, in front of a kerosene heater, typing my blog on Microsoft word. Weds Feb 12th winter storm Pax made her appearance. Never would I have imagined that this would be the outcome. I never gave it a thought that we would need to load up on survival gear. Let me start at the beginning. Weds morning, we heard on the news that Pax was going to hit us pretty hard here in Aiken, South Carolina. The CSRA has been said to have been hit the worse, which is the lil area I live in, of course. Anyways so she made her appearance.. school was canceled bc they expected a good bit of ice, she is a winter storm but brought us NO SNOW, instead, she blessed us with PURE ICE. As the precipitation fell from the sky it froze everything, literally. It looked like something out of a bad movie.
It was right at noon when we lost power. My first thought was “crap, the hot glue gun didn’t get hot enough to glue googley eyes on our craft!” then we squeezed the glue out just enough to finish up. We giggled and joked around while we sat around with no power. After about 4hrs of no power I grew irritated bc it was going to get cold. No power for us means, no heat, no lights, and no water bc we have a well for that. We literally are crippled without power. All through the night I was praying the power would come on. I hung blankets in doorways so that we could conserve the heat we did have left and I stayed on the couch for the night just in case it came on. Our boo slept with daddy and the oldest hung out with me in the living room. All through the night you could hear “snap… crackle… booom” it was tree branches, so heavy with ice that they were popping and breaking off of the tree and barely missing our house! Around midnight, I heard the sound and a loud boom as well as vibrating, I screamed for daddy, he came running and I ran outside with a light to find out what happened. A branch fell on the house and then rolled off; thank goodness it was heavy enough to scare the crap out of me but not heavy enough to break anything. Well we survived the night. The next day I got my phone off the charge out of the car and there was no cell signal. Apparently the tower I run off of at the house had lost its power so for me this means no phone unless we drive into the city of Aiken. Well on day 2 we decided to go out to get some lunch, and see if we could get some supplies. We drive past Lowes and decided to go in there to see what we could get. As we are walking in people are filling their carts and cars with wood to burn, Lowe’s was just giving away wood. People were going crazy. It gives me chills just typing and thinking about it. I literally wanted to bust out crying and just hug random strangers! As we drove around that day, many stores had no power and closed down. There were huge trees just laying over on their sides with roots in the air taller then you or me. These trees aren’t just trees. They are hundreds of years old!! Some of these trees really defined the beauty of our city. It was so heartbreaking, riding around and seeing all of these trees, all of the yards and all of the people just helping one another. There were men in their trucks riding around with their chainsaws cutting trees out of stranger’s yards, out of the roads! People that weren’t and aren’t here, yall can’t even begin to understand how devastating this is. I am not one to sit here and exhadurate to make it look like we are going through or dealing with something that we really aren’t, so … this one is big. Our Governor has said that this storm did more damage, has been more devastating than the hurricanes. FEMA had to be called in, when FEMA comes, you know it’s big. It really hit me when we were in town and at a red light I look up and I see 3 18-wheeler flat bed trucks with generators from FEMA drive passed us.
Our neighbor had a small kerosene heater they borrowed from a friend that they let us use. We found kerosene at a gas station that had power on the other side of town. There was a line half way across the parking lot. We went to another gas station and found it there. That night I slept so good! Unlike the night before, everyone was bundled up but I kept waking up bc my nose was so cold. But the night we had heat… that first night… was something else I tell ya.
Day 3 of no power, Friday, Valentine’s Day: Like everyone else that was still without power I was getting frustrated. But I tried to remain calm about it all. I do have two small children and they don’t need to see me getting all mad and stuff about something that is out of our control. I took a step back sort of speak and just thought deeply about everything that is going on. We took a drive up to Columbia to take a shower and do a load of laundry. I wanted to stay up there so bad but I knew we couldn’t. While we were up there and I was getting the boys bathed and getting ready to come back to the house, daddy went out hunting for stuff that we could use here at the house. The area up there wasn’t hit as hard so they had more supplies then our stores down here. So daddy ended up hitting big. We got a battery lantern, a battery fan that has a light option, so that we can use it to blow the heat around, it’s small so it can blow the kerosene heat that comes out the top of the heater. We also ended up with a Coleman camping stove and some propane tanks for it. So we loaded up and came home. Btw I told everyone that our valentine’s day was postponed until further notice. LOL
Day 4 of no power, we all went outside and worked in the yard and tried to get started on cleanup. We will definitely be able to have a few fires this year with all the wood we are going to have LOL. Still holding up pretty well.
All in all we are handling it pretty well now. Having the heat really helped out. Before that I was going to lose my mind. There’s no way I could deal with the cold. Today it was pretty nice outside; we were working pretty hard and stayed out there all day. I have some wind burn on my face but it’s okay. While we are going through all of this we are trying to make it a learning experience for the kids. We are learning a little bit ourselves. I asked my oldest, “What has this situation taught us about teamwork” he told me and gave me a few examples; we talked about it for awhile. It makes them understand how important it is for everyone to come together when people need each other. Not just in a time of need but in general, teamwork is important and makes things a little easier for everyone. The clean up in the yard is done by us all, everyone has their own job is exactly what my 4yr old son said today. It’s very important for them to learn from this. It’s hard on us all, everyone in the city. I’m trying my hardest to keep calm about it and I wish that everyone else would do the same. I see people all over Facebook, some people even have called me while I’m out, complaining bc “its ridiculous that we’ve been without power for 4days and they are saying it could be Monday before it gets back on” I wrote a post about this, and I wish that I had the heart to just bitch everyone out that said something like that to me. People don’t think about ALL the work it takes to get power restored to homes. They have to start at the substations and work their way out from there. So many trees have to be cut before they can fix things; they are running out of material and parts to fix the equipment. Nobody Is thinking about how all those men and women just volunteered to leave their homes, warm bed, and their families to drive to Georgia and South Carolina to help complete strangers get their power back on. Those people didn’t have to leave to come here for this crap. But they did bc they have good hearts; they care, unlike the ungrateful people who are constantly bitching about how long it’s taking. My thing is, just be grateful for what you do have!! Someone out there has it worse then you!! It’s sad thinking about how many families with children n elderly people are right here in my little town that doesn’t have heat at all! Or heck, even candles, some don’t have that!! I can’t even sit here and think about it by it will have me in tears. All I wanna do is go out and take children home with me. We have it so much better then most. People need to think about that!! And just have appreciation for those men that are here, far away from their homes, to help us. Lord be with them while they are out there fooling with that mess, and bless their families too! They have children and wives and family members at home just waiting to see them, waiting to get a phone call to know that their loved one is okay at the end of their work day… all of this is just tragedy! So sad for everyone involved. No matter how much I can’t stand this, I still feel so bad for everyone. Winter storm Pax really put a hurting on us in Aiken County. It has DEVASTATED so much around us!!
I’ll “blog” more and I will upload pics as soon as possible. When I get a connection, if I take the laptop with me next time I go to town, I will get this blog on the net.
Pray for all of us that have been impacted and devastated by Winter Storm Pax. She/He sure was evil.