Ducks and Flowers

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Nebraska, storms and lesagne

We are in the middle of one more winter storm in Nebraska today! It has been grey all day and rich colors of rain in February warn us of the storm ahead.

This is a photo from the first ice storm we had this year before Christmas. We lost our heat when the electricity went off this time. We also lost one large branch on the tree by the edge of the lake. Afterwards our furnace did not start when the electricity came back on. We realized we did not have the best flashlights in the world, so we invested in a few new ones and we were lucky to get our furnace fixed by dinnertime.

The second ice storm came after Christmas and was harder on trees than the first one so we lost one large willow branch in the marsh in front of our house. Our ELECTRICITY went off six times on that Saturday night as it started icing our trees and power lines. We found our new flashlights this time, lit candles again and saved some water in case the power went off again.

We decided to improvise and grill our unbaked and nearly layered lesagne I tried to create by flashlight and candlelight after the power went off the first time and then repeated this loss or power five more times that night. We thought it might work to try our grill outdoors to cook; but it was slick as a whistle on the deck of the house! Jay carefully walked it to the grill for cooking the Nebraska way in winter storms.

We managed to get our lesagne grilled and cooked. It tasted a little more grilled for sure but it was tasty to eat that evening. It was also the weekend when our son was packing to move his things out EAST in the spring after starting teaching history of science at Dickinson college in Pennsylvania. So he had a most interesting time sorting and packing by flashlight for the trek East of his "stuff."

The power came on the next morning about 2 am for the last time luckily... as I slept in the loft near the gas fireplace. I heard it come on in the night which was a great sound as computers whizzed again beneath me. Now a few snow storms later, we have the wind blowing again tonight and rain turning to ice and snow by morning until 6 am.

The Interstate in Nebraska has closed from Kearney West to Wyoming according to the weather channel. This is a big change from 68 degrees yesterday and 62 degrees the day before. What big changes and adapting to weather in Nebraska!

Only in Nebraska can you have such drastic changes from one day to the next as you find yourself packing by flashlight, cooking lesagne on your grill, trees iced like glass and trees ripped and torn from the weight of ice leaving many towns and farms without power for days!

And it is so different from North dakota where I grew up and the snow mostly just piled all winter until the big SPRING THAW. In Nebraska you can be hot tubbing one day outdoors with all the winter snow melted, washing your cars, wearing no coats and the next day people are calling off events and closing the interstate! And now we are all REALLY anticipating the warm, sunny days of spring once again!