Last Wednesday another storm began to roll into the region. Residents hadn’t really recovered from the last big storm that hit the week before. Needless to say, they went about their daily lives distracted by thoughts of ice, wind, and disaster.
Before the clouds had reached our area, the sun hazily shone down, giving the hint of a promise of Spring. Chainsaws were buzzing as the fallen limbs from the trees were cut into more suitable sizes to be used for firewood. The stray cats were having a joyous time playing on , in, and around all the branches laying in the yards.
It was about 3:30 when the clouds loomed over the neighborhood, bringing cold temperatures and gusty winds. Living in a brick house, you’d think the sounds of the storm would be left outside. But, no. The wind whipping around the corners and over the roof howled as if it was bringing an army of ghosts to haunt us. The sleet came in sideways, slapping against the windows. The temperature dipped down further and the wind wouldn’t relent, making us more fearful of the chance of having a repeat of the devastation experienced of the week before.
That night there were gusts of winds and the sleet turned into blowing snow. It did look as though it may really be a repeat of that treacherous ice storm. Peeking out the bedroom window, I saw other people doing the same at their houses. It reminded me of that old saying, “Misery loves company.” This is one time when I didn’t want the company because I wanted my fears to be wrong. The wind didn’t die down until early morning hours. I could finally feel myself settling down so that I could sleep.
That next morning brought sunshine that glistened everywhere because of the ice. Yes, there was ice — lots of it. Of course, the school buses didn’t run that day. It would be another day that the children would have to make up, making their Summer break even shorter. People got out and about but not without slipping and sliding. Even the cars with 4-wheel drive were having problems. The temperature reach up past freezing, melting most of the ice before the colder temperatures at sunset started creeping in.
Amazingly, the next day was so warm that everyone was in long shirtsleeves, once again cutting up branches from the ice storm before. Chainsaws whirred endlessly throughout the neighborhood. Pickup trucks and 4-wheel drives came and went as lumber was hauled off. The air was alive with the sounds of community work.
It looks like Winter is finally over here in the mountains of Tennessee. It’ll be talked about next Fall when people start dreading the frosty conditions that soon with embark on them again.