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We finally had power restored to house around 8:30 am this morning and the internet was working again when I returned from work. Tornadoes were spotted only a few miles south of the house yesterday. After torrential rains all of Saturday night, the sun made its appearance again by Sunday afternoon. I was ready to start planting more flower bulbs!
No such luck. The rain started again and around 4 pm the tornado sirens went off. Winds of 75-80 mph (~ 120 km/h) had been reported in the area. Suddenly, everything outside was blowing sideways from west to east and I was very happy to have a basement shelter. Watching debris blown at the windows and trees swaying was scary! In the end, we were extremely fortunate compared to others in the Midwest. The house survived without damage, although the rain barrels, just emptied and turned in the last week, were blown into the woods and several (mostly dead) trees came down on and near the road. Power was out in the entire neighborhood by around 4:30 pm. We sat. My bread dough, rising all day in preparation for the week’s lunches, was ready for baking, but without electricity that project would have to wait. So we waited. Soon after the sun went down and I read with a hand-cranked flashlight—a very apt gift from my mom. We soaked cold oats with dried fruit for dinner. There was a flicker of power around 10 pm, but that only lasted about 2 minutes and then all was silent again. We would get our first chance to test this super-insulated house with no heat and no sunshine.
The next morning we woke to a surprisingly comfortable house. An internet check later in the day showed that the lows went down to 43 °F (6 °C) overnight. A colleague had warned that some power outages on this side of town could last for days. We were lucky this time and I am very happy that the house withstood this first test of resilience in a storm. This storm will undoubtedly be one of many this house will have to weather in the coming years.