Okay, Listen Here

Okay, Listen Here

Monday, May 2, 2011

Accidently Somewhat Prepared

When we last spoke, I said we would have a full report on the Heart of Dixie Readers' Luncheon.

Here it is: It didn't happen.

For anyone who doesn't know, North Alabama was devastated by tornadoes last Wednesday. I had already scheduled Thursday's blog before most of the storms hit. Though all four of us are fine, by Thursday morning, none of us had electricity. In my city, they predicted we would be without power for five to six days. I got it back after about thirty hours and I got Internet back a few days later. Unlike some sections of town, my service has not been interrupted since. (It seems TVA gives a certain percentage of power and the city decides how to distribute it. And they keep changing their minds or making people take turns.) I hypothesize the reason I haven't had to take turns is because I live near the jail. This theory is based on no research and endorsed by no one. Even The Guy, who will often respond to my made up wild ideas by saying, "That is a possibility," (if for no other reason than to shut me up) will give my idea no credence.

I am going to have to go ahead and give myself a 7 out of 10 in preparedness, though I don't deserve it. It was an accident. The only thing I willfully did to prepare, was charge my cell phone.


  • We both had full tanks of gas.
  • We had cash—less than a hundred dollars, but a lot more than either of us usually carry
  • We had guns and ammo.
  • We had plenty of batteries—enough to share with neighbors.
  • Our flashlights and weather radio had fresh batteries.
  • I have a gas cook top, so I could cook and boil water.
  • Though I use a Mr. Coffee because it serves my desire to drink coffee all day, I own a French press, which made me a rock star for a short time.
  • I had canned goods.
  • I had candles. I even knew where they were, along with the Aim 'n Flames.
  • I had two clean accessible coolers.
  • I have land lines and two phones tethered to the wall, including a circa 1980 Trim Line edition. They were gold long after the portables were beeping annoyances.

If I had it to go over again I would have:

  • run the dishwasher
  • done laundry
  • put the candles sticks on a piece of aluminum foil instead of the decorative mirror that sits on my coffee table.
  • frozen large chunks of ice that would last a long time.

In fact, apart from covering my table with aluminum foil, I've done all that stuff on the second list, just in case the city of Decatur doesn't, after all, care if the jail has power. I can't be sure. I can't even be sure I'll have power and Internet long enough to get this blog posted.

Stephanie, Cheryl, Kathy, and I have a few rules here under the Tulip Tree, like no negativity and if someone takes the time to comment, have the courtesy to answer. And we are very big on keeping to the schedule. If it's your day, do it or make sure someone does.

Well. Bear with us because we just aren't sure what is going on here this week. I don't know who has the capacity to do what or how long they will keep it.

It's a small thing in the scheme of life, much like being able to watch the NFL Draft and Royal Wedding. Turns out, those things weren't nearly are important to me as I thought they were.

What do you do to prepare for primitive living?


  1. I think you've got everything down. It reminds me I need to purchase a portable gas stove - not just for fun outdoor cookery, but to be prepared.

    It also reminds me how much we have all become so dependent on technology - it's good to have life skills, because sometimes you have to put them into practice.

    Land line phone - I think that's what got everyone.

    We were very lucky in Williamson County and didn't have as much power outage as Nashville and Murfreesboro. This time.

  2. I have a whole list of things I'm going to buy, like one of those radios with a solar cell and a crank, more candles, an inverter you can plug into a car cigarette lighter and use to run a laptop. Of course, once I invest in all this, we'll never have another storm of this magnitude. I'll gladly make the financial sacrifice though. ::grin::

    I was pretty well prepared too -- battery radio with extra batteries, candles, Aim 'n Flame. I was able to get charcoal and cash on Thursday morning and ice on Friday. I've been grilling my freezer contents and sharing with neighbors. We've had lots of nice picnics and block parties here at the apartments. We also have a dumpster overflowing with the contents of residents' refrigerators. I shudder to think of what my grocery bill is going to be when I have to replace condiments and freezer basics like veggies, frozen blueberries and of course my Edy's frozen fruit pops.

    I have an old fashioned trimline phone too, but even it doesn't work. But compared to those who lost family members and/or their homes, I'm just mildly inconvenienced. I can't really complain.

    Do we all get to wear t-shirts now -- "I Survived the Great Black-out of 2011"?


  3. What I've done to prepare for times like this - marry a pioneer man who is ready for whatever this world throws at him.... weather, terrorism, or the end times. We are ready!!

  4. Gwen--Something I going to purchase--kerosene lamp. Precious Angel and his dad brought us one and it was wonderful. You can burn tiki torch fuel in it.

    Marilyn--Disaster brings out the best and worst in people--different people, of course. There were people throwing rocks at utility workers here. Glad you had good people around you.

    Laurie--Yeah, that would do it.

  5. I have everything a good Scout would need. Generators, landline, trimline phone, gas stove, cook stove, batteries, flashlights, oil lamps and a smart husband. I was as prepared as I could be!

    Glad we all made it okay! A little stinkier from no hot water but Okay!