Posted by: Karen (Betty Bear) | November 9, 2012

More aftermath and other stuff

It’s Friday night and I’m sitting in a Starbucks posting this since it is the one warm and relatively comfortable place to hang out while the girl child is at her two hour fencing lesson. BUT – I COULD POST FROM HOME TODAY!!!!!! I was at home, trying not to shiver too much and trying to get a little bit straightened up when . . . TA-DA! The lights came back on!!I have to say, eleven days without power is just  w a y  too long. The house became basically unlivable because it was just so damn cold. 42 degrees is fine for a brisk walk, but not as a way of life. I’m going to get an electrician to make a separate circuit panel for the generator with the well pump, sump pump, hot water heater, refrigerator and chest freezer on it. And then get a wood-burning insert for the fireplace so we can actually use it. Then we will be able to sustain life for a long time. I’m just so excited to be able to sleep in my own bed, flush the toilets (don’t laugh – two weeks of flushing with buckets and the whole house begins to take on a faint odor of latrine), turn on a light, and stay warm. It was really very stressful. Part of the stress was just the whole not knowing – when was the power coming back, what was going to happen, would I be able to get gas for the generator, where were we going to sleep if it got too cold, etc. I can’t complain too much because, you know, the house is fine. We are fine. No one died (from the hurricane). No one got hurt. It was unpleasant and inconvenient, but that’s really all it was. For others, particularly the Jersey shore, unpleasant and inconvenient doesn’t even come close. Total devastation does.

In other news, my father-in-law died yesterday. (I just don’t like using euphemisms for death. It is what it is and it is a part of life.) My husband, his sister and my father-in-law’s wife are all flying from CA to NJ tomorrow evening and the interment will be on Monday. My heart is aching for the three of them. No matter how old you are it’s really hard to lose a parent. And my heart is really aching for Bette, the wife. Her sister died the same day. So she’ll be here for her husband’s interment and her sister’s wake and funeral. I told the kids last night at dinner and they were fairly matter of fact about it, as I am. We weren’t close so my grief is mostly for those who are grieving, if that makes sense. To add insult to injury, the day his dad died, my husband also broke a tooth. So he’s calling me from the dentist in CA to get his regular dentist’s phone number before they went to the crematorium. What a fucking day he had.

So I’m back on the interwebs and can do a much better job catching up with all my internet friends. A small bright lining was not being able to hear all the political ads and hoo-rah surrounding the election. I do wish I had heard some of the speeches but I suspect I’ll be able to find them on you tube or something.



  1. I’m so glad you have power again. Your plan for the alternate panel for the generator so you can run necessities sounds like a good idea. I also wondered if it’s possible for a plumber to hook up a by pass on the well pump so that you could pump water by hand if something happened to the generator. Hopefully that never happens, but I’m a believer that if you spend money and prepare for the worst case scenario, it won’t happen.

    it sounds like your poor husband had an avalanche of troubles fall on him. I hope the worst is over for all of you and especially for the people dealing with the devastation Sandy left behind.

    • Thank you! I could check into that with the plumber as well; that’s a good idea.

  2. Karen, my condolences to all of you on your father-in-law’s death. It’s tough, no doubt about it.

    Tell your husband I offer all sympathy on his broken tooth. I broke one of mine last week. Today the temporary crown came off. Dental stuff. Blech.

    Glad you got back the power and are no longer freezing and inconvenienced. I think you were very stoic amid the discomfort!

    • Thanks! I am so grateful for my mom as she was the one person to whom I could vent unrestrained – she probably saved my sanity!

  3. Oh Babe. I’m so sorry. Poor Husband-of-yours.
    Gah, stupid damn life lessons, enough already!

    Love and healing, from me to you and yours.

    • I’m ready for some peaceful quiet days. Thanks for the love and healing.

  4. Karen ~ I’m so sorry for all you have had to endure the past couple of weeks. Death of a loved one is hard and yes, you hurt for those grieving. Your poor mother in law, a sister and husband. Life does throw unexpected curve balls. Much strength and love to you.

    • Yeah, sometimes life just sucks and you just get through it. Thanks for the good wishes.

  5. our power was out for three days 3-4 years ago and it was awful. I can’t imagine 11 days. I’m so glad it’s back on and that you all survived both the storm and the aftermath without too much trauma. Much sympathy to your husband and all who are affected by your FIL’s death.

    • Thank you. I kept saying the power outage was inconvenient and stressful, but we were really okay. No damage, no injuries, no lost business, but it was pretty damn stressful!

  6. I hope that by now your life has gotten back to what passes for normal — or is Walden Pond your new address?

    • I have to say Walden Pond is lovely! But too crowded for me. Life is indeed getting back to normal.

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