Thursday, February 3, 2011

Thank God the Groundhog Predicts an Early Spring!

Monday, the ice, sleet and snow came in.
In my portion of the D-FW Metroplex, that meant about 2 inches of ice, topped with another 2 inches of snow. And cold. So much cold. It has been decades since I have experienced single digit cold. With wind.
My newspaper carrier hasn't delivered in three days, which is okay. I can drive on this stuff, but with two bad knees, I can't walk on it. So I couldn't have gone out to pick up the paper.
Yesterday, I finally got out and drove around. I checked the streets around the schools and accurately predicted we would have an unprecedented third Snow Day with the schools closed.
Friday, I don't know. Probably.
We have had about 16,000 households that lost power. Not so many, with a population of several million. Some of them will have fireplaces. They will get through.
Yesterday, with the failure of a bunch of energy plants around the state, we had rolling blackouts all over the state. Most Americans are really ignorant on the size of Texas. It is almost 1,000 miles deep, about 800 miles across. The whole state has been affected by this Super Storm.
While the overnight temperature in the Metroplex was about 7 in my neighborhood, it was in the 20s in Corpus Christi, on the coast. At least we are prepared for the cold, and build for it. In South Texas, this has been like a horrible cosmic accident.
The rolling blackouts were supposed to be for about 15 minutes. No schedule; we didn't know when they were coming. Most of mine were 20 minutes, about 11/2 hours apart. But some folks had them only minutes apart. Others had an hour off, 20 minutes on. It wasn't fun. I thought of the people in Iraq, who have been living with this for years. It's hard to plan anything. I've put off a wash, and I've cooked when the power was on.
Around the Dallas and Fort Worth downtowns, the blackouts were exempted. Cowboy Stadium and the venues where Super Bowl events were happening also were exempted. This is business, and I understand it. But school children who WERE in classes yesterday in South Texas were in dark, cold classrooms for minutes or hours at a time to provide that power.
Today, there is buzz that the power stations that failed are newer ones that were built improperly and not weatherproofed for the extreme cold. Apparently, they were built on the cheap. And how we have all paid.
Overall, it hasn't been bad at all. My daughter-in-law's office was closed, and she defrosted a turkey and made dressing, sending a big dish over via granddaughter, so I didn't even have to get out. Yum!
Yesterday I took the roast potatoes left over from a pot roast, nuked another two potatoes, and made potato soup. I used the pot roast juice and beef broth, added diced onions and a bay leaf, more garlic, and pureed the potatoes in my blender. I chunked up some of the roast and added a can of carrots. I ended up with a brown, smooth soup that is yummy and tastes like really good brown gravy. With a chunk of bread, it's a really good meal.
I found my long johns, not needed for years, and topped them with sweats. Layered T-shirt, longsleeve shirt and sweater. I'm keeping the thermostat on 68, or 69, and I am comfortable.
Yesterday, it was colder here than in Green Bay or Philadelphia. Both teams opted for indoor practices. Sunday, those standing outside in the parking lot will be in a chilly 40s with wind. I'm sure they'll enjoy it,and again, I understand our whole state sacrificing a bit for the Super Bowl.
I have some issues with the guy who lost power in the middle of his home dialysis, with his blood in the tubes.I have issues with the fast food places having to close because they couldn't depend on power to feed the usual crowds, much less the visitors. I'm sure our visitors from all over will grumble about how we have handled this huge weather crisis.
We did get a few snow plows to scoop the icy slush off the busiest freeways because of the Super Bowl. Those go back Saturday.
I am not sure if I will watch the game Sunday. It is still awfully icy for safe walking most places if I go out. But if I stay home, I may miss part of the game anyway if rolling blackouts resume.
And they may.
Fortunately, I went to the library Monday while I filled up the car and bought enough extra diet Dr Pepper. I can always curl up with a good book.
Sometimes, the old solutions are still the best.


Sandy ~~~ said...

Hi...I heard the last time a horrible storm like this hit Atlanta at SuperBowl time...some 10 years or so ago...they never got offered the gig again. This weather might be felt in the Dallas/FW area for many SuperBowl Sundays into the future.

Fay Akers said...

We got about 10 inches of snow. Thankful we didn't get the sleet. Sorry it has you hostage. Thank goodness you had your soda. My husband would freak if he couldn't get his. LOL