This morning Chad called. I was still in the bathroom getting dressed. He wanted to make sure my electricity was on . . not sure what he was going to do if it was off. I guess he was really just checking on me because their power was out for about half the night. He said as soon as it went off, he got up and built a fire in the fireplace, though the bedrooms still got cold. They have plenty of sleeping bags, some that are super warm, and they could sleep in the family room if they had to but the power came back on around 6. Anyway, I told him that my power never went off but when I went into the kitchen, I noticed the clocks were blinking so, at some point, it did go off but I have no idea for how long.
Poor Rita. I had told Vince that if the power went off here, I didn’t know what I’d do because when her heating pad goes off, she gets very vocal. Last night, when the power went off, it went off and it doesn’t come back on automatically so when I went into the kitchen, she started barking to let me know she was not happy about being cold. Vince said “I can’t believe she didn’t bark when it went off.” I’m sure she did . . I just don’t hear things like that when I’m sleeping.
As far as the electricity in Texas . . not doing well there. Since Vince had Covid and then got the vaccine, and now dealing with snow and ice and moving generators around, I worry about him so he texts me every morning when he gets up.
His power came back on last night but I wasn’t optimistic that it would stay on and it didn’t. It went off again during the night. The Oncor outage map last night showed about 450 customers in Brown County without power. This morning it’s showing about 1800 without power. What I’m reading is a “systemwide grid failure” and that people should not expect power to be restored today. What a disaster! Over 2 million households without power and an ice storm headed to Vince’s area tonight or in the morning. At least he doesn’t have to worry about the power going out since it’s already out.
I woke up this morning and there was no text from Vince. I knew he was tired last night so thought maybe he was sleeping late. By 8 a.m., I started trying to call. The phone went right to voice mail. I tried calling via FB and he didn’t answer. I was starting to get concerned. One of his friends is in Florida for two weeks and the other has Covid so I didn’t even know who I would call to check on him if I couldn’t get in touch with him.
It was after 9 before he called me. Cell service is out. The power was back off and the backup battery power for the internet has died so he had to hook the router/modem . . I don’t even know . . to the generator to be able to call me.
He had me call the closest convenience store to see if they had gas and the guy said “for now” so Vince ran to town and got gas for the generators. We have a propane generator that he can fill from the tanks but that’s here already. He said he figured I’d need it before he would. He talked to a guy while getting gas and he said he had driven in from Brady because there’s no gas to be found there. The guy at the convenience store said he was only able to get 1,000 gallons of gasoline and when that’s gone, he has no idea when he’ll be able to get more.
We always felt confident that Texas would be the last place to have a grid failure since, for the most part, Texas has its own grid. Now we know that was a false sense of security.
My weather is better. It was -13 when I got up. Last night was the last of our horribly cold nights. It’s up to -3 now but the sun is shining. Our low tonight and tomorrow night is 10, then on Thursday night it dips back down to 4 and by Friday, we should get up to 34 . . the first time we’ve been above freezing in two weeks.
I am ready for normal winter weather and I know there are many more who are feeling the same way.