It has been of late, as someone else once wrote, the best of times and the worst of times. Last Sunday, the 14th of September, 2008, I was busying myself with a review of photos by Flickr friends when the winds outside began to pickup and the sky became cloudy. Within short order the winds began to howl and whine and the clouds darkened such that I thought rain rather imminent.
I normally pay a fair bit of attention to our weather forecasts because they are important for the purpose of my photographic endeavors as well as creating a lawn mowing schedule for getting mine and two others done during the course of the week. This week wasn’t any different in this regard and I didn’t recall seeing or hearing about any particular storm due to strike this particular Sunday. Yet, here it was. The wind increasing. The leaves blowing about. The trees straining to and fro.
Early in the afternoon the wind had become so strong that I changed the television channel (the t.v. being on in the background while I viewed photos) to the Weather Channel to see what was going on. Apparently the remnants of Hurricane Ike, a category two hurricane when it struck the coast of Texas, which left widespread damage, hadn’t received the memo from Mother Nature that stated hurricanes should diminish in strength once over land and not remain a nuisance after a short period of time. Instead, our little section of South-western Ohio was hit with tropical force winds for about 5-hours last Sunday.
The official wind reading at the local airport was 68 miles per hour, but other stations scattered around the Dayton area had readings as high as 75 miles per hour: category one hurricane strength. Needless to say, such winds over a prolonged period of hours created quite a bit of damage and debris to my little community and the greater Dayton area in general (as well as other parts of Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky).
The real downer to this storm was the loss of electrical power. The company for which my wife works has a working relationship with the local power utility. They had indicated to her that approximately 250,000 homes and businesses were without power on last Sunday. And we were one of those 250,000 homes or businesses. We remained without power from early Sunday afternoon until the late morning/early afternoon of Thursday past: about 90-hours without power. Cold showers suck. No Internet access or television service sucks (especially when one is a news junkie as am I). The loss of about $300 to $400 in groceries bites, but I think you get the picture.
However, and on the whole, it could have been far worse (as illustrated by the middle picture above). The loss of electricity and all the inconveniences it wrought are just that: inconveniences. Other folks lost portions of the their homes or cars and some remain without electricity still, including about 1/4 of my own community.
The REAL inconvenience was that my Canon 40D’s battery needed charging and I couldn’t do such without power, thus the AA-battery using Canon A630 became the camera of choice. Long live the Canon A630!