Eli and I had not heard that we would be receiving anything significant from Ike, so we went to church at 1:00. So unsuspecting. During sacrament meeting, the lights flickered. We thought it was odd, but the building was fairly recently renovated so we paid little attention. After that first hour we headed off to teach in Primary. (We teach the sunbeams.) During that second hour the lights flickered once again. Hmmmm. The third hour is when we take our class of 3 year olds and separate from the rest of the group for our lesson. As we took them for a drink and potty break, I looked outside and noticed the trees were really bending in the wind. This is probably when I should have thought that something was up, but instead I pointed it out to the children, thinking they might enjoy seeing the strength of the wind. We went back to class andfinished out lesson. As we were waiting for the parents to come pick up their chidlren, we heard the wind blow and some dust particles from the ceiling fell on our heads. And then the power officially went out. Okay...now you can call us morons. We still didn't get what was happening!
Leaving church, we began to take our normal route home only to run into traffic that ended up making our 20 minute commute a 45 minute commute. It was at this point that we discovered limbs down, trees down, and someone's trampoline laying upside down in a church parking lot. At home we discovered that our house didn't have power, and neither did just about everything else. Roads were blocked all over town and trees fell over all down our street. Thankfully, none of the large trees in our yard fell over, but we do have a pretty pile of fire wood now.
Damage on Hartford St. (our street)
That first night without power was a little warm, but the weather cooled off and was perfectly fall-like. Can't beat that! Another interesting element to all of this was the sound. You would think it was super quiet, but we lived and fell asleep to the sounds of chainsaws cutting wood and sirens screaming down the road every 15-30 minutes. By the second day, these noises barely registered they were so commonplace.
We went without power until last night (really, early Wednesday morning), and besides the fact that we lost a lot of the refrigerated food we bought just the day before the wind storm, I didn't mind it! Probably because work didn't have power either for the first two days of the week. :) But really, though it became expensive to go out to eat every day, I really enjoyed not having to even contimplate watching TV or checking email. It was so liberating. And I just love candles (Eli does too), so we got our fill of those each night. I may be the only person who was sad when the lights came back on. But I will try to feel grateful for it (as it certainly is more convenient), and many still don't have power. And they might not until Monday!
Then on Tuesday he had his swallow test to make sure that everything is sealed from the surgery and that he can drink and eat without asperating. Unfortunately, he failed. But they will just do the test again on Friday. When I visited today he was doing some exercises the speech therapist gave him to "relearn" how to swallow. I have to say, we were laughing hysterically at some of the things he has to do. At one point, I was watching CNN and Dad turns to me and says, "Kitchen." Um...huh? So he explained that one of his excerises is to make "kuh" and "guh" sounds...as in "kitchen." It was quite amusing.
All of this is well and good, but the best thing that happened came on Tuesday evening when I was driving home from the hospital. Dad called me to tell me his doctor's assistant just came in. During surgery they took 19 lymph nodes to check for any spreading of the cancer. All 19 came back negative. DAD IS CANCER FREE!! I cried. After that great news, he looked so much better today. Now all he has to do is recover from surgery. This being no small feat. But he is making remarkable progress. Thank goodness. And finally, I feel that relief.