Saturday, December 16, 2006

Famine & Pestulence Next?

Our good friends the Cascades didn't step up this time. Thursday night, all hell broke loose. We had winds of forty to fifty miles per hour, punctuated by gusts of who knows. The top half of trees that had stood for a hundred years or more, twisted off and fell,usually on top of something.

Since the papers have covered this story well, I will bore those of you that are local. For those that live in the mid-west, they're going to say, "What's the big deal." For those Snowbirds that are from this area...It's a big deal.

Because of the sharp rise in the foothills that we call home, tornados, although not impossible, don't occur often. What we get, is in a strong storm, downbursts that will twist the tops or even the top half of large living trees until they snap.

Thats what happened Thursday night. I would have reported this earlier, except for the fact that my power was out for more than 24 hours. I became a refugee. Friday morning, I hopped in my very fortunately undamaged car, and surveyed the damage.

The famous Bitter End Pine? Gone...Or at least half of it. A tree that has been threatening our Trailer court? broke into little pieces, missing everything. (If you didn't know, yes, I am trailer trash.) Yes. One of those people that retired without large pensions. Not your fault. My bad, but nevertheless, here I am.

In Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, just south of us about 25 miles, a different story. Two trailer park/RV parks experienced serious damage. In Spokane, Washington, West of us, four deaths occured. At the height of the storm, we had 50,000 folks out of power. 50,000 might not seem like that extreme, except we are rural, and 50,000 power users represent several hundred square miles.

Those of you that have boats in the local marinas? Don't worry. The winds came at us from the West, Southwest, and the marinas at lake level suffered no damage that I have heard of. Had the wind reached thse velocities from the other direction, it would have been bad.

I retreated to a motel in Coeur d'Alene, whence I rediscovered the local night life in the city. Then, retiring to my room, I wondered if my home was alright. I wondered that all night. This morning, broke with sunny skies, windless and beautiful.

All I had suffered was loss of sleep. My home is fine, and all of those of our community. Somehow, we dodged the bullet. I will sleep well tonight. I wrote this so that those of you that winter elsewhere, could too...


CynM said...

(((Herb))) Glad to hear you're ok. My power's been out since Thur evening and still out. House is a balmy 42 degrees.

I was awake most of Thurs night listening to trees, branches, and fences fall around me. Amazingly enough no damage to my home (already paid my dues - a tree fell on our house when I was about 9) but there's a 30' fir sitting in my neighbor's livingroom.

Looks like I'm a refugee to Starbucks for a few hours to recharge my cellphone and laptop and check what's ado in the outer world.

green libertarian said...

Herb, glad to hear you made it thru the mess. Checking out the nightlife in CDA too, eh? heh heh heh