Today was an interesting day.
EJ and I left the house at 10:30 a.m. to get more firewood. First we drove to the gas station to put gas in the truck. I said to EJ, “I understand how a person gets their physical characteristics from their parents, but where does a person’s personality come from?” I mean, I know that we are formed by God, but did He make a sort of DNA that forms personality, or does He attach a personality to us when we are conceived, or what? That started a discussion in which EJ mentioned that Norwegians brightly decorate common items which they use. They feel that as an item wears out, it becomes more beautiful. And the Japanese have a beautiful centuries old art form called Kintsugi in which they repair broken pottery with seams of gold. This made us think of tikkun olam which is a Hebrew phrase that means “repairing the world” (or “healing the world”) which suggests humanity’s shared responsibility to heal, repair and transform the world. We have discussions like this all the time.
After the gas station, we drove the 2 miles (or less) route to get more firewood. We figured we could get a couple of loads of wood before the storms forecasted for this afternoon reached us.
It was a beautiful morning. But hot. And humid. And very hot. The temperature reached about 90 degrees. After we had unloaded and stacked each load, we’d go into the house to cool down. After we had two loads in the woodshed, but we decided to go get a third load. This last load was the worse because we were really tired, hot, sweaty, and dirty. I kept going by telling myself, “We are almost done and then we can enjoy a day of Shabbat rest!” On Sunday we will get one…and maybe two more face-cords of firewood. But tomorrow we rest. We worked so hard because it is satisfying to know that we have almost a winter’s supply of wood in our shed. We won’t have to worry about running out or stacking wood in the cold. This is the earliest we have ever gotten all our wood for winter. We discussed that maybe EJ should take a week off work at this time every year so we can get all the wood we need.
Anyway, when I saw that EJ was getting the last armful of wood from the truck to the shed, I almost ran inside to the bathroom, shed my wet dirty clothes, and took a shower. When I looked in the mirror, my face was red with heat and exertion. As soon as I was done with my shower, EJ took his shower. He was as soaked, dirty, and tired as I was.
We wanted to rest, but EJ needed to go to the pharmacy to pick up a couple prescriptions, so as soon as we were clean and had cooled off a little, we drove to the store in the next town. We could see dark clouds piling up and we wanted to get there and back again before the storms hit. We saw that the Farmer’s Market was set up in the hospital parking lot. We are all out of honey, so we turned left instead of right and bought some raw honey from a vendor. The woman who sold us the honey said that it’s from their own bees. EJ bought some maple syrup from another vendor. We hadn’t seen the market all summer, but I was told today that this year the vendors don’t set up their tables until around 2:30, which is when EJ drives in to work.
Then we went on to the store. In the entry way, we met friends we hadn’t seen in quite a while and we stopped and chatted with them for a while. Then EJ got his prescriptions and a few other items and we headed home. We made a quick supper and then I washed the dishes.
We had just begun to settle down for a quiet evening when the storms hit. There had been warnings that there would be large hail, high winds, and possible tornadoes, but we just got rain, a bit of wind for a short time, and some lightning and thunder. The clouds were simply gray rather than dramatic. It wasn’t that bad of a storm for us, though we heard later that nearby areas were hit hard with a lot of power lines and trees down. Police were warning people in those areas to stay off the roads. The conditions in those nearby towns is probably why our power flickered and then went out.
With no electricity, EJ and I sat on the porch for a while oohing and aahing over occasional flashes of lightning. When it was no longer thundering, we went for a walk through our darkened town, occasionally meeting and chatting with neighbors and petting their dogs. (We always pet their dogs.) We were told that several towns and thousands of people were without power and that there was no timeline for when it would be restored.
When we got home again, Luke leaped onto my shoulders. I have learned that a black cat leaping through a dark, powerless house onto my shoulders is really quite scary.
We talked. We ate ice cream–you know, so it wouldn’t melt if it took a long time for the power to be restored. I lit some candles and read by lantern light. EJ got his battery operated radio from the basement and listened to it. JJ read a book on his Tablet. We kept our computers off in case we were without power for a long time. I took a couple of pictures, but then my camera started flashing “low battery.” So did my phone.
The power came on at about 10 p.m.; it was off for about three hours.