It was a very quick trip -- drove up Monday to mom's, along with a small heater, extra propane bottles (the small one), and some non-perishable items.
On the drive up, we noticed that there were a lot of dead deer along the Interstate, from VA through NJ. Must have been 4 or 5 dozen. As I haven't made the drive in a few years, I also noticed a lot more business along the interstate (closed and open), and more residential housing backing up against the interstate. As for the deer, hubby and I remarked just one phrase: human encroachment
As we got to mom's the utility crews were working on the trees that had taken down all the lines -- power, phones, cable. We saw more than a few utility poles were snapped, or leaning precipitously in one direction or another.
Upon entering mom's you could see your breath! NOT fun. She doesn't use her downstairs area, but the wood/coal burning stove was still there. And she still had a barrel of coal. Why didn't she use it? She was afraid to ask her neighbor to check the chimney since it hadn't been used in about 15 years. Hubby did check it out, and got a nice fire going. Between that and the little heater we got her warmed up. As hubby and I went to see the grandchildren (yes, I have grandchildren!) the power went on!!! (She still didn't have cable, phone and internet until late last night, so I missed the election returns. I felt like I was living in the olden days, waiting until morning to read the results in the paper. It was kind of nice.)
Mom found out the next morning that several of the ladies on her road got together and called the power company and gave them holy heck. It's a short, dead-end road, with a lot of elderly folks that have lived there for more than 50 years. I also heard Gov. Cuomo was a bit perturbed with the slow progress of the utility companies in NY state.
Mom would not come home with us. The trauma of living for a week without power was too much for her and a 12 hour drive would not be in her best interest. At least that's her story and she's sticking with it. We scooted out of there this morning before the nor'easter hit. The original weather forecast was for 1-3 inches of snow for her area, then changed to 3-6 inches of snow, and late this evening, was again changed to 6-9 inches. But, no power loss, and it's warming up tomorrow, so no need to worry about getting plowed out. At least now I have emergency contact numbers, and she has emergency heating sources.
On the way home, we saw a convoy of Georgia utility trucks in northern NJ. It looked like they were on their way to the next area that needed help (they got on the interstate then off at the next exit). We also saw another convoy of utility trucks heading north in southern PA.
As for my brother-in-law, I'd like to share with you this beautiful tribute may he rest in peace.
Thank you to all my KV friends for all your support, wonderful ideas, and just being there during a very frustrating and stressful time. You are the best!
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