Tuesday, January 27, 2009

winter storm in Arkansas

We are in the midst of an ice storm in Northwest Arkansas, so I am writing this on laptop and with wireless modem. Our power went out hours ago, so we had dinner made by candlelight and it may be an early night. The forest around our home has the unusual sound of trees being ripped apart by the weight of ice. We have had limbs falling nearby and on the deck but so far no major damage has been done to the house. I spent part of the morning and part of the afternoon clearing downed trees and very low hanging branches from our long gravel road.

There are aspects to this kind of thing that one learns to cherish. We will be very glad when the power goes on, but living without requires a different level of consciousness and greater attention to planning and preparation.

For instance, my wife Jean began working on our dinner of Pasta Primavera before dark, while we still had a bit of outdoor light coming in the windows. We have candles in strategic points to help our navigation through the house. We have a supply of wood laid in alongside the wood stove which I have kept blazing all day. The dog is nested in the warmth of the breakfast room, and I am doing just a bit of correspondence before the battery is finished on the laptop.

Do you all know how precious a thing life is? And that it is made better when the hands are engaged in making it so? Our power outage may last days, as the damage to trees from ice is very widespread. But joy and peace are not dependent on getting power from the grid, and today has been a pleasant reminder.


  1. Dear Doug:
    Here, in Rio de Janeiro, we can only figure out what's a winter storm like this one! But we have ours summer storms, with plenty of rain, general damages at roads and, unfortunately, afeccting the houses of poor people who lives in 'risc areas'.
    I think that a power breakdown, if not too long, is an opportunity to stop and make some good reflexions on our way of life.
    I hope your storm dont last too much.

  2. Wishing you well in your adverse weather. I relish the positive approach you take in this post to weather induced siege conditions!

    'joy and peace are not dependent upon power from the grid' - or indeed upon many other things that we place wholly too much reliance upon.