Return of the Dust Bowl
Enjoy another weather-related lesson from the Caswell Clan.
Yesterday, the average wind speed was in the 40 MPH range with gusts up to 90 MPH. The air quality went from “okay” to “terrible” in a matter of minutes. Dirt and dust were so thick that visibility was ZERO. Most people know to drive with headlights in rain or fog. You also have to do so in a dust storm.
We arrived home after evening worship, pulled into the driveway, and couldn’t open the garage. Our opener is a bit stubborn. You have to be pretty close to the door for it to work. After a few tries, I realized it could only be one thing: No power. As my husband got out of the car to see if he could manually open the door, the phone rang. It was the alarm company saying the power to the panel was low. This only happens when the power goes out (the backup battery is sufficient for most outages). Since the youth devotional was at the church building, we returned there. We enjoyed more worship and fellowship. The kids played more. When we returned home again, we still had no power. Our attempts to break in were useless. We decided to wait it out in the car, which really was the safest solution as it was now dark with dirt blowing. We saw the utility trucks and waited in expectation. Finally, a little over an hour later, the electricity came back on and we were able to get in the house and get ready for bed! It must have flickered off and on a couple of times during the night because the clock on the microwave was off again, but we were safe and snug in the house, so that didn’t bother us.
We learned a few more things to add to our preparedness, as we evaluated the following problems:
* the manual release for the garage is inside the garage so we need an alternative way to get into the house.
** our screen doors do not have keys. The front and back door deadbolts have different keys.
*** if it had been safe to go somewhere else, we would have been without overnight items. While I keep a bag with blankets and water in the car this time of year, that’s the extent of my planning.
Storms – of any variety – can be terrifying and exciting. Storms provide teaching moments and opportunities to learn and improve. A dirt storm, after the dust settles, reminds us that God’s mercies are new every morning.