It started with a low rumble. With thunderstorm season upon the Midwest, I instantly was on my feet, disconnecting my computers.
That was at 5:30 this morning, 5/2/08. Minutes later the storm hit in fury. 70 miles an hour winds, one huge pop and the electricity was out.
With a flashlight in hand, I grabbed my purse, which held my cell phone. Misouri's tornado season started in January, the usual in mid-March. Those high winds could mean a tornado. We'd already seen devastation and floods and other tornados, but still, here came another round.
I have a packed emergency basket for tornadoes, which includes batteries, water, candles, whatever, and I grabbed that, keeping it close.
With high winds, lighted candles can be dangerous--if it is actually a tornado. So I sat in the dark, waiting for the time to grab my basket and head for the basement.. Cell phone calls began coming in from family. Was I all right?
Sure. Let's not talk, I'm low on battery. Call you later....
The storm gradually eased to a few pops and rumbles. Now my subsidivion is too quiet, electric garage doors firmly closed, waiting for "juice" to open them. Nothing would taste better than fresh brewed coffee, but lukewarm served. I thought briefly about manually opening my garage door, and driving for fresh. But another pop of very close lightning killed that idea. T-storms can be deceptive beasts, easing away and then leaping back with a fury.
Gradually, the storm did move on. The efficient news-team reports on my battery radio ran to scattered damage, roads closed, whole regions out of electricity, people slowly returning to work, just a little late.
Still without electricity, I heated a cup of coffee on my aromatherapy burner, not the best tasting brew, but fine under the circumstances. A few candles are burning now in the twlight and soon they won't be needed.
As I stood on my front porch, I could see the electric crews working through different transformers, checking to see which was the right one. In emergencies, these guys are heroes, working in adverse and dangerous conditions, out there doing their jobs.
According to the radio, limbs are blocking the roads and some workers will be late. One school, the buses already in route, has cancelled, the children to be returned home.
When you're a working mother with school age children, this is something you don't want--young children returned to home base, when you are needed at your paying job.
Personaly, I think a working mother, be it a single mother or not, is one of the most stressful jobs.
With Mother's Day almost here, I raise my coffee cup to you, working mothers....