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Red birdA red bird waited its turn to get to one of the bird feeders on Wednesday, Feb. 27, in Kansas City, Kan. (Photo by Lou Braswell)
I listened to the weather forecast, listened, heard and prepared. I found myself charging all my electronics, stocking up on food and paper supplies. I charged my external backup batteries for my cell phone, yes, I said batteries, meaning two of those devices. My cell phone is like my personal assistant, it is my addiction.
I also charged both laptops and my iPad. Yep, I am communication-devoted. In this winter storms my electronics become my world to the outside. Oh, and I forgot, I also charged my portable, battery-operated HD TV. OK, everything is charging, food is in the freezer, I am almost ready. Oh, oh I guess I better dig out that corded home line phone to replace the cordless to be on the safe side. OK, I am ready.
I did make it a point to get to the election board Monday morning, Feb. 25, to cast my very first advance vote. I always enjoy going to the polls, but this year I decided if I was to vote, it needed to be done early vs. possibly not at all. Oh, oh, on the way home from voting, I realize I may not have enough bird food to get them through this snow storm. Lucky me, I have a friend who was going to Walmart and said he would pick up the bird food for me.
OK, Monday afternoon, emails are out, updates out on the changes in polling places. Again due to the coming storm, even our election commission has had to rush to prepare, taking polling places from 30 to 5.
All this preparing, sure enough the weather hits Tuesday morning, we wake up to fast accumulating snow. By 8 a.m. I am snowed in on my deadend street. By 9 a.m. I lose power, but I am prepared. Now as long as it isn’t off too long, I can survive, after all I have my electronic dependency covered. I can use my gas stove oven to knock the chill, don’t open the refrigerator and things will stay cold for quite a while. I can heat my tea water on the stove, lighting the burner with one of those candle lighter things, and I can survive.
Now comes the not prepared side of me. As I watch the snow pile up, I notice I have a lot of tree branches hanging way low, weighted down by the snow. One nice size branch in particular is right outside my window, almost on my power line, over my driveway. What the heck, I am woman, and I am prepared, right? I get out my snow boots, thinking heck I can go out shake some of the little twigs and it will get the snow off and allow the branch to raise up away from the power line. I open my door to get my strategy logged into my memory bank. There must be 6-7 inches of snow to wade through, the branch is about 10 feet from my front door. Rethink. I am not ready and prepared for this storm, I am too much into modern-day conveniences.
I sit back down at the kitchen table with my hot tea and my laptop on one side and my cell phone on the other side, realizing way back in the past this snow storm would not have stopped our great-grandparents, they would have been out there, collecting the branches for wood to cook, to heat their home. They would not have given second thought to the depth of the snow as they treaded out to use what we would call their restroom, collect their wood, and possibly hunted for their food. Are we spoiled, have we become wimpy? With that big yes, certainly, I know I am guilty of taking a lot for granted, and would have a difficult time without all the things we now take as a way of life. I hope we are done with the snow. I am so ready to take time to smell the flowers.
Our Leavenworth Road Association meeting will be March 12 at Trinity Community Church fellowship hall, 5010 Parallel Parkway. Hope you will join in at out potluck dinner-social hour beginning at 6 p.m., followed by our meeting at 7 p.m. Spring will be in the air.
Lou Braswell is the executive director of the Leavenworth Road Association.