“So all night long the storm roared on: The morning broke without a sun; In tiny spherule traced with lines Of Nature’s geometric signs, And, when the second morning shone, We looked upon a world unknown…”

The electricity came on at 10:45 this morning, nearly three days since my return to the days of Little House on the Prairie last Friday night. The heat is cranking and the house is now a balmy 47˚. When I woke up this morning, it was 39˚. I am still wearing three pairs of socks, a shirt, sweatshirt with a hood and a really heavy wool sweater, and Gracie is still wearing her coat as well. The mittens helped a little, but my hands were cold the whole time. The worst, though, was my cold nose. The only time it was warm was at night with my face under the covers, a doubled over down comforter and a second doubled over comforter, and I kept my hood up to protect my head.

You could see your breath in my house this morning. Outside was warmer.

The first morning (on Saturday) I heated my coffee from the night before in a pan on the fire. I had two cups, more to get my hands warm than anything else. I kept the fire going all day and had the quilts bundled around me. That day I had hope. There was a lot of hard wood in the cellar which I carried up, falling only once down just three steps. I broke some dishes on a bureau beside the steps and cursed and cried a little, more from frustration than anything else. I was close enough to the fire that I could feel some warmth and Gracie was beside me as was Fern. Poor Maddie meowed every time I went by and patted her and Maddie is never a meower. I read a real book, a Patterson called Zoo, that day as there was no way I was leaving the comforters or the fire except when Gracie wanted out. I was warm sleeping that night bundled as I was with the layers over me.

Sunday morning the house was 44˚. One of my neighbors brought the papers from the driveway to me as she was checking on all the neighbors. I told her I was fine except for coffee, my life’s blood. About an hour later she returned with a cup, and my day was made (such as it was!). I was running out of wood, my phone’s battery was in the red, no dog food left and my car was still stuck in the snow. I was freezing and Fern was so cold she got under the covers and Maddie got up on the couch with the dog, something she never does. I called my sister with an update of my misery. The only shelter which accepts animals was full, and I wasn’t about to leave them so I could go elsewhere. A while later my sister called. She had tried to find a motel which accepted animals but wasn’t lucky then she remembered my nephews. It took three calls to wake them up, but they were more than happy to come over. Amber, my nephew Tim’s girl friend, came and kept me company and brought gifts for me for the two of them. They have just come back from Australia, Bali, Hawaii and San Diego. They were in Australia working for a year and then stayed to tour for another few months. They’ve been gone a year and a half total. They also brought coffee, wood and dog food. They (Mike, my other nephew, and Tim) shoveled out my car and the walk. Amber said she hadn’t ever been in a house so cold. It was still 44˚ when she was here.

Last night was freezing. Gracie, Fern and I shared the couch, but I had to get up a couple of times to rearrange all of us so I’d be comfortable. I couldn’t believe how cold the house felt. Then, as I said, it was 39˚ when I woke up.

The house is 55 balmy degrees right now. I should be sun bathing in the warmth!

If I ever go on vacation, I needn’t worry as there are plenty of pseudo-Kats to write Coffee. I thoroughly enjoyed reading my blog!! I got a few laughs, and have to admit you sounded an awful lot like me!!

Birds are still fine. I filled all the feeders on Friday, and there is still seed in the biggest feeder!

As for the Spawns, I haven’t seen any!

No mice in four days!

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45 Comments on ““So all night long the storm roared on: The morning broke without a sun; In tiny spherule traced with lines Of Nature’s geometric signs, And, when the second morning shone, We looked upon a world unknown…””

  1. Larry J. Hord Says:

    Thank goodness that you’re okay! I’ve been worried about you!

    • katry Says:

      I was just freezing to death! Today was the worst. I don’t know how much more I could have taken.

      Thanks for the concern. I appreciate it!

  2. Birgit Says:

    Welcome back to electrified civilization! I hope your home will heat up soon.

    • katry Says:

      It has been on just about 3 hours and it is only up to 57˚. Maddie is roaming and visiting and feels so much warmer.

      I’m so happy I could click my heels into the air!!

  3. Caryn Says:

    Welcome back! There’s a lot to be said for electricity.
    Glad you and your companions are okay and the house is heating up satisfactorily.
    I’ve seen spawns. Nothing stops them.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      It’s good to be back! I was so cold this morning I wanted to cry. I was waiting for the fire to die down so Gracie and I would go for a ride in the warmth of the car, but I felt so bad for the cats. I did put my comforter in a nice ball so they could snuggle.

  4. Welcome back to the world! I’m glad that you and the furry kiddos are okay. We went through a devastating ice storm three years ago and I had to leave the house for 5 days, and didn’t get phone back for 2 weeks. I can understand the stress you must have felt and I am glad that things are getting back to normal.

    • katry Says:

      Thanks, plgcm!

      My feet are beginning to get some feeling, and the furry babies are napping by themselves instead of on or beside me for warmth.

      I was close to leaving the house. I was going to buy another cat carrier so the two could each have one then I was going anywhere I could find that would take us!

  5. im6 Says:

    Sending warm thoughts your way (since I can’t send actual warmth).

    • katry Says:

      Love these warm thoughts! Great line, “The radiator’s hissing.”

      My feet are beginning to thaw so all will soon be well! I’m even thinking a nap!

      I haven’t heard this song in a long while-still fun to watch.

  6. Bob Says:

    Glad to hear that you and the pets muddled through the storm. I hope your Mounds bar gave you the energy to keep warm. Most of us have no idea how much we depend on electrical power for everything until we are without. I don’t know how our fore bearers lived a hundred and fifty years ago without even indoor plumbing.

    Fortunately, the mice have all either frozen to death or fled South to Florida before the storm hit 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Today we started barely muddling. It was just so cold I was going to take us all into the car for a ride to get warm. Now it feels downright summery!

      I can only hope you’re right about the mice!!

  7. greg mpls Says:

    the laura ingalls wilder lifestyle is highly overrated. welcome back.

    • katry Says:

      Thanks, Greg,

      I remember all the girls sitting around the fire in those cotton dresses. Overrated for sure! I had on so many layers I was like the kid in The Christmas Story plus two comforter, and I was freezing!

  8. Hedley Says:

    Welcome back – we are down a Pope and dont eat the Findus Beef Lasagne.

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      Thanks for the update! I didn’t care about the Pope though it’s the first time I remember a resignation, but I was thinking about the lasagna!

    • katry Says:


      When I was a kid, the dog food was horse meat!

      • flyboybob Says:

        The French, Italians and other Europeans love their cheval. When I was in Italy my friend ordered it and I took a taste. It tasted like very lean beef. Why would I want to eat Trigger or Mr. Ed when you can eat prime beef with highly marbled fat. There is nothing like having your arteries clogged, but it tastes so good. The last time I was in the UK most folks couldn’t afford beef so dog food could be a good substitute since there’s not a lot of difference between dog food and Indian food.

        Why not a retired pontiff? This guy was smart enough to realize that the spirit was willing but the rest of him wouldn’t follow. I guess there is a huge pension fund for him since the last Pope retired 600 years ago. The money has been earning a lot of interest over the centuries 🙂 Maybe the Cardinals will pick someone a little younger, like in his sixties, and maybe a little more liberal. They are having a difficult time keeping members and recruiting priests who are not pedophiles 🙂

      • katry Says:

        It is really rare for a Pope to retire. They usually die in office. No pensions for retired Popes. I figure he’ll have an apartment in the Vatican. The cardinals are never very liberal. Maybe they’ll pick a pope from outside Europe, that would be huge. I don’t think they are having trouble because they are trying not to recruit pedophiles. They have learned.

        I think there is a huge difference between Indian food and dog food. I know the taste of Indian food and the smell of dog food, and they have nothing in common.

        Not once in all the trips to Europe I have taken have I ever had horse meat.

  9. Pat Says:

    Glad you survived- and the reserves – nephews etc- came to the rescue! Your description of it sounds much like Dar’s Mortal City -“…They were wrapped up like ornaments waiting for another season. ..” Hope you are warmed up soon!

    • katry Says:

      My heat is now at 62˚-took all day for it to get there, and I still feel cold. 68˚ is my usual so I hope it will give me that feeling of being warm and cozy.

      The reserves did a great job as the snow was ice in places and they had to chip at it to clear it.

      Coffee was good too!

  10. olof1 Says:

    I’m glad You’re back again and that You didn’t freeze to death! You should buy one of those kerosene heaters. There’s no risk of dying from carbon monoxide poisoning with the new ones 🙂

    I heard about the shelters on the news but I did wonder if they allowed pets there. I was thinking of trying to find Your telephone number to see if I could reach You if You didn’t write anything today, that is by the way rediculusly easy even if one lives on the other side of the ocean 🙂

    I loved Hedleys Coffee blog 🙂 I laughed so much 🙂

    Have a great and hopefully warmer day!

    • Hedley Says:

      Thank you Christer 🙂

    • katry Says:

      You can’t use kerosene heaters in the houses here, against the law. I was thinking of a generator, but I would have used it only twice in three years: this storm and a hurricane.

      The shelter which allows pets filled up the fastest. It is the high school where I used to work. I was just about ready to get in the car and ride around to get wrong. Gracie would have been easy, but I was trying to figure out the cats.

      I also loved Hedley’s blog!

  11. lilydark Says:

    So glad you are getting warm and are ok now. I’ve heard frozen mice are a delicacy.
    Warmly Waving,
    Lori and Jewels

    • katry Says:

      Lori and Jewels,
      I think Jewels would love the frozen mice. I know I wouldn’t! They are so small you’d have to eat a lot of them!

  12. Bill S. Says:

    It’s probably not worth getting a generator, since your power seldom fails. Ours goes out when it gets cloudy. If you lived closer you could have stayed here. We got 23 inches of snow, and 2-3 more today. The rest of the week looks better.

    • katry Says:

      When I was I Ghana the first time, the hurricane had the electricity off for three or four days and now this storm so that’s only twice in three years; however, the 39˚ this morning made me wish I had one.

      Gracie would love to see her Uncle Bill!!

  13. Coleen Burnett Says:

    So’s I get into the library to check on Coffee to see how my pal Kat did in the storm – – and I thought I was reading about myself after Sandy. not Kat after Nemo. So glad you are OK! Been there did that and wore three t-shirts for warmth!

    My Mets reported today so it is my unofficial spring. When do the Sox report?

    Waving with a shovel in my hand – –


    • katry Says:

      The pitchers and catchers have already reported and the rest of the team reports on Valentine’s day.

      Yup, we have a shared experience though Sandy was a bit earlier in the year so cold wasn’t a big issue.

      Waving right back with my hands in very warm mittens!!

  14. spacedog1955 Says:

    Gentle Kat,
    It is a better world with you warm and fed.

  15. Beto Says:

    Spacedog was my nickname during Voyager II project

    • katry Says:

      I was wondering where that came from! What did you do during the Voyager II program?

      • Beto Says:

        I made some of the parts. We needed a lot of luck on the project and I always seemed to come up with solutions to problems. The Russians always said they “Couldn’t have put a man into orbit without their Spacedogs.” So they called me Spacedog for grins.

      • katry Says:

        That is really neat-makes you a part of history!

        I love where your nickname came from!!

  16. MT C Says:

    Congratulations! You have looked nature in the eye one more time and won!! That must have been some adventure, one I hope to never have.


    • katry Says:

      Monday morning was almost throw in the towel time. I was so cold I couldn’t stand it and was about to go out to the car to get warm, but I needed to figure out how to get the cats with me.

      When the heat started to blast I did a dance and shouted Halleluia!

  17. Jay Bird Says:

    Glad you’re warm again, Kat. I survived the Ice Storm of ’98 in Massena, NY. SEVEN days without power; all roads were closed for a week and the cell phone towers collapsed from the ice! Too dark to read, even in daytime. Fingers too cold to play my guitar, so the kids and I tried to learn chess. Big fireplace kept the living room near 50*. No fun, but we got through it. You brought back some chilly memories!

    • katry Says:

      Jay Bird,
      Those are memories best lost in time. I was okay at 44˚ but 39˚ was just too cold. The fireplace was of little help though I sat as close as I could.

      Seven days would have been way beyond human tolerance. I would have packed up all of us and gone off Cape somewhere that accepted animals.

      Your seven days is miraculous and I applaud your tenacity!

      • Jay Bird Says:

        No choice, my friend. The roads were all closed and thick with ice. We couldn’t leave, but our stock of wood and food (and Scotch) was adequate. Worst part was no shower for a week; those cruise ship passengers had the same problem.

      • Kat Says:

        Jay Bird,

        Glad to see you had all the essentials, including the Scotch!

        I am not a cruise fan. I have only been on one which was a gift to the whole family from my mother. She went to find one which would tantalize me and my brother. It was an old ship with wooden deck rails made of teak. It had been refurbished, but it was small and didn’t have many passengers. It went through the Miraflores Lock of the Panama Canal-that was the canny choice of my mother knowing I could never refuse that!

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