Welcome home! Here’s an ice storm to greet you! Ha!
We had one big load to get out of the trailer, dishes, glasses, bookwork, printer/scanner, tools and on and on, good thing it was just the one load. The RV Place was still fiddling with the hydraulics so we left them to it. A stop at the grocery store was in order as Weather Canada was warning about a possible significant ice build up/storm coming, I didn’t want to wait until later in the day when everyone else might have decided it was a good thing to go grocery shopping!
There were plastic totes and bags and bags to unload, sort, wash, dry, put away…I was forgetting where things were to begin with! Yikes! Five months on the trailer does that, it still feels like home sometimes! Maybe I just packed too much on the trailer to begin with! I think I brought back as much food as I initially packed…comes from living on the boat as a kid and shopping for six months at a time! I’ll blame it on that anyway!
In the morning Wednesday it was starting to look ugly…the branches were starting to droop, I had to keep clearing the bird feeder off and filling it…they knew! We had no plans to go anywhere so I sat and watched the ice accumulate on leaves and trees. The wind was coming from the East so it was sticking to the windows and doors, forming icicles on the roof’s edge.
Then the thunder and lightning started…WTF? Rocket made a beeline for under the comforter on the bed, his go to hiding spot…lumpy we call him…the Gods and Goddesses must be angry! All that booming! I went out during a lull to photograph the ice build up, so beautiful, but so heavy. The pines were taking a beating across the lake and I was hoping the wind wouldn’t start to howl.
Then it really started to come down, the power flickered a few times but remained steady for most of the day. I went to the front of the house to look at the ice build up, under the maple and a quick peak down the stairs to the dock to see if anything large had come down. Not yet. I went back to knock the ice off the bird feeders and heard a crash that made me jump! A huge limb came down off one of the maples, there had been a squirrel nest in the cavity there…I’d just walked under that branch…time to go back inside! It wasn’t just freezing rain, an occasional hail shower would come down as well!
Earlier I’d filled up the tea kettle, left a bucket under the eaves in case we needed to flush the toilet if the power went out. At 4 p.m. it really flickered but came back on, a teaser, for fifteen minutes, then all was silent, and getting dark…it was just a matter of time. We had several gallon containers of drinking water off the trailer, we had food. I’d filled the oil lamp and put the candles in easy reach earlier. Now we would have to wait.
When you were raised on a boat with a 12 volt light system where the batteries were always dead…you have a plan….thanks John Harrison, the oil lamp was a wedding present way way back in 1990’s…Yes, we often forget what year we were married! Ha! I swear the transistor radio is over 40 years old, or more…yikes! I had it as teenager on Ile de la Reunion in the Indian Ocean for cyclone updates…it still works, yeah, new battery, Lake 88 FM for local news about power outages and posible repair times. The entire town of Perth was out as well! Nothing to do but sit, wrap up in a blanket and keep the wood stove going! The power tease us and flickered on at 7 but went off again. I crept into bed and didn’t even wake up when all the lights came on after 11 p.m. we were back online!
In the morning the fog hovered over us as we listened to the trees creak and groan, then you would hear a branch come smashing down, our heads would swivel to the direction of the noise. My fingers were crossed as I went to bed, the warmer mass of air was supposed to move North over us by midnight, at dawn, we were still hovering at the freezing mark:( A few hours later you started to hear the drip, the melt, temperatures were on the rise! Yeah! The burden of ice was slowly starting to melt. It was a bit surreal as I looked out the window at the rivers of water running down all the trees…
Power was still out in so many areas! Most of Perth, as well North of us, this time we were lucky. In 1998, the infamous ice storm had left us without power for three weeks, with 35 horses at the barn to care for! Not a period I have forgotten! Some people had their power lines ripped off the house by heavy falling branches, others, their entire lines were down. One friend lost their power pole, snapped off at the ground. The power of all that weight of frozen water! By 6 in the evening, most of the ice was gone. Mike wanted to do a quick recon of the road so we hopped in the truck. The torrential rain had created chasms in the road down the hill, thank goodness for duallys! Tires went right over them! We cleared limbs and near the end ran into our neighbor on his 4 wheeler, coming to check the other two cottages, a pine was down over the road. He went back for his chainsaw and Mike it cut it so we both could pass. I picked up limb after limb and tossed them out of the road. We were lucky, just that one small pine but you could see the damage throughout the forest.
In the morning, the sun was out! The cats were pleased to get out, they had been SO excited our first day back. Groot and Rocket were running up and down the driveway like little lunatics, crabbing and bouncing like kids set free from a long car trip, wait! They were!
Groot had to give our new metal bird, Cora, the corre camino-roadrunner, a once over before declaring her family! They sniffed their old haunts, chased a few birds and stalked the squirrels. It was good to be home. My bird friends slowly started to filter back after going without their steady source of sunflower seeds all winter. The Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers were the first, then the Purple and American Goldfinches showed up with the ever present flocks of Chickadees. It was good to hear bird song again, the first few hours here of quiet was eerie!
The henchmen showed up, the Grackles, then the Red Winged Blackbirds in flocks. The American Goldfinches were changing over to their bright yellow breeding colours! I sat and watched a flock of birds fly over I wasn’t familiar with, Waxwings I was thinking…and yes, thirty or more Bohemian Waxwings were exploring, looking for fruit and berries. Hopefully we can get a few more bushes and fruiting trees planted this year!
The LBB’s and LGB’s showed up as well, little brown birds and little gray birds! The Chipping Sparrows and a reclusive Song Sparrow, The juncos were poking about in the leaves for seed and the White Breasted Nuthatches were busy as well! A feeding frenzy after the ice and cold.
I think that perhaps the chipmunks and black squirrels were hoping the nasty cats weren’t back, sorry to disappoint them! The feline force is back and ready for some chasing! Actually, not really;) They have deemed the black squirrels too large, with big nasty teeth to bother with much but the chipmunks, we’ll do our best to protect and rescue those young unsuspecting ones caught when unaware! Rocket was bitten on the nose by a vole and has decided the squeaky ones are best left alone as well. Gamora runs the other direction when she hears them squeak! These traveling mewberries, they have so much catching up to do! I was so pleased to see how incredibly happy they were to back on their home turf. The running and crabbing and overall joy was wonderful to behold…then of course…nap time in the sunbeams. I will leave it there for today and stay tuned for the lake ice going and suddenly what seemed like Summer, then Winter, then Spring again. I saw sign on the road at a local farm market: April..the only month you get to experience Winter, Spring, Fall and Summer, all in 24 hours!
Looks like Aliens peeking through the glass Fence in one of the pics….did you let them in or have they been following you…….and the sunbeam blissfulness nothing better
They might have been! Ha! 👽!!!!
Thanks to the ice, we have a bunch of red pine uprooted down by the beaver pond. Lots of cleanup to do.
I can only imagine, all that soft soil. Here they were just snapped off. Lots of white pine branches down as well. We’ll be cleaning up for awhile!