Sunday, November 11, 2012
I woke up early Saturday morning and glanced at my clock. It was completely dark. I looked over at Tony's side of the bed and saw his clock was blank as well. Outside my window I could see a LOT of snow. And then I heard it. That unmistakable sound of silence that occurs when the electricity is off. I love that silence. There is something about it that stirs both a bit of excitement and anxiety in that sound.
We had a big storm here in Salt Lake City over the weekend...REALLY big. And I'm not exaggerating one bit. I don't know what the official report is on how many inches fell, but look at just take the above picture's word for it. It was a LOT.
I'm not sure exactly what time the electricity went out Friday night, but according to a neighbor's facebook status, it was about 2am. It went on after 11am so based on my FB friend's info, we were out of power over 9 hours!
There is nothing like a power outtage that makes you take stock of how prepared you are for an emergency. And take stock is what I did. Here is what I determined: We are not prepared.
* We have 2 emergency flashlights that are always plugged into outlets. One was not replaced correctly and so was completely dead. The other could not be found (I will go ahead and blame Ryan for this one - probably the only blame he will receive).
* We have 1 battery powered lantern that functioned fabulously. Other smaller flashlights and batteries were accounted for and worked, but it was soon light enough that we didn't have to rely on them.
* We have enough water to last us 2 weeks and food to last us few months. The recommended amount is 1 gallon of water per person per day. Luckily, we didn't need to tap into our water. We've recently started buying our food storage and we are buying about $50 of food storage per month.
* We do not have a power generator or candles. These are now on my shopping list. Our home is very well insulated and the temperature dropped to 68 degrees, but it was pretty tolerable.
I had made plans in my head that if the power stayed off (I tend to be a bit dramatic in these situations), we would take Ryan to either my sister's house or even Auntie Patty's (his sitter) so he could sleep in a warm home and Tony and I would rough it out. OR, we would use some of my Marriott points and check into the nearby Residence Inn.
As I mentioned before, the power came back on around 11am, Tony and Abby walked through the snow to pick up our Explorer with its newly installed snow tires and the adventure was over.
Being from California, the snowstorm kinda freaked me out a bit. I knew we would be ok, but I found myself not knowing about some of the basics. A classic example of how unaware I am of Utah snow storms, I asked Tony how long our food in our freezer would last and what we should do. He just looked at me and said, Honey, the food will last a lot longer than the power will be out, but if it comes to that, we can just put it on our back porch.
So it is Sunday afternoon and I have determined to become more prepared. I am going to become more prepared for power outages, for winter storms, for other possible disasters and calamaties. Okay, maybe I'm getting a bit dramatic again. But consider the northeast and the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
Regardless of relaties or dramatics, stay tuned for more emergency preparedness information coming your way.