And the wind huffed and puffed, howled and scowled, rattled the windows and hurled unguarded items hither and yon outside in the darkness.
Then the unthinkable happened: The dreaded power interruption. Suddenly the dark night became even darker as the streetlights lost their glow and even the faintest glimmer of light disappeared.
The CPAP machine’s airflow ceased and the rumble of the furnace was silenced. In the blink of an eye, we had traveled from 2019 Shippensburg to “Little House on the Prairie” days. Worrisome thoughts raced through my sleepy head. I wondered if the “young’un” was still awake. Soon he was at my bedroom door, carrying battery-operated candles and a flashlight. He handed me a candle and informed me that he’d strategically placed one at the stairs and one on the first floor. We marveled at how much light they provided.
“I’m worried about getting up on time without an alarm clock,” I confessed. “Can you set the alarm on your phone?”
He confessed, “I only have about 3 percent power.”
Well, there went that idea! “I’m not going to get any sleep,” he claimed. “The wind is so loud, I expect the window panes to blow into my room.”
I shared that I, too, half expected a shard of glass to blow in and pierce my innocent heart.
The howling wind continued its evil ways, and my worries kept up with it.
Meanwhile, as I listened to the sound of trash cans rolling down the street, I heard the little furry creature racing up and down the stairs, no doubt wondering why her human had not turned on the lights and why he was still awake at this ungodly hour.
A few times my mind allowed me to sleep, but only for very brief spans because that same mind woke me up with a slap upside the head and the warning: “You’re sleeping, you idiot! You can’t go to sleep because in a few hours you must be up to get the kid to school!”
The practical side of the brain was telling me that hundreds of local residents were in the same predicament. I wondered if the schools even had power and if bus drivers would be up in time to make the morning runs. Would there be a school delay? Would the world end if sleep finally found us and we wouldn’t awake until noon?
My eye was aimed at the side window in my room. “If the power comes back on, I’ll see the glow from the streetlights first,” I reasoned. Then I could adjust the time on my clock radio, set the alarm and snooze away.
But what if the power goes out again? Are there workers out in these gale force winds trying to reattach downed wires in the dark?
Finally, at 2:44 a.m. the welcome glow of the streetlights was back. I set the alarm and prepared to sleep. I heard the furnace kick on. We were back in 2019 Shippensburg.
And we had to get up in a mere three hours!