For the last few days I've been held hostage in my own home by Mother Nature.  There's dozens and dozens of trees down and even more limbs scattering the roads.  Through the miracle of the internal combustion engine and the goodwill of a neighbor who's been donating fuel, we've been able to keep the electricity flowing.  I thought I'd share some photos and thoughts that I've had while trying to keep warm.

This was taken directly across the street from my home.  You could hear limbs snapping all night.  It sounds like those scenes in Band of Brothers where the teams is taking shelter in a German farm or something, and you can hear the distant mortar shells and machine gun fire.  And then when you finally walk outside, it looks like a froze Mt. St. Helens blew up.

This is the damn bane of my existence right now.  The power lines in some places are sagging so low that you can almost reach up and grab them.  In fact, one had broken and fell across our lawn/driveway a few days ago.  If you ever want to know what I'm really like at 4:30 AM, fresh out of a deep sleep, let this exchange illuminate you:

Wife (whispering): "Hey....hey....there's a cable down in our yard."

Me: "Uh-huh"

Wife: "What should we do?"

Me: "Ummm...keep the dog and kids inside?"

Wife: "But what about the cable?"

Me: "Call the PUD [Public Utility District]."

Wife: "How do I find their number?"


Now, I'll be first to admit I was a) kinda rude and b) hypocritical since in one of my previous posts I indicated my distain for phonebooks.  But before sunrise, I'm pretty incoherent, stupid and surly. 

These cows live next door to me.  Literally.  They're about a sand-wedge from my house right now.  I spent my lunch-break on Wednesday shoveling snow off the barn that's just out of frame to the left.  If you want a good work-out, may I suggest shoveling wet snow off the roof of a barn?  Seriously.  Come do it.

I've walked down this road about five times in the last two days, and each time I'm carrying a five-gallon can of unleaded.  Give me a few blankets and a shopping cart and I could pass for an extra in The Road (though I play it more like I'm Denzel in The Book of Eli).  It's eerily quiet on this road, except for the occasional chainsaw...which doesn't do anything to assuage my apocalypse fears.

This is one of the few mailboxes still standing on the main road.  Most are buried under snow, knocked over by snow plows or encased in ice like Captain America.  I've been so isolated during the last few days that when our mailman drove up today, part of me went into Lord of The Rings mode:

Me: "Good sir! What news have you from the East?"

Wayne the Mailman: "Umm, here's your GQ and a Gorge Classifieds."

I snapped these photos on one of my walks up the main road and GOOD GOD LOOK THAT AMOUNT OF ICE THAT BRANCH!  There are surfaces on which ice should not be able to form.  This thing looks like something from The Abyss.  And the crazy thing is that it only took a few hours for this to occur.