Gracey off the Grid. The Loudest Week of My Life!

The Super Storm was one of  the worst in North American history!

Fridays are usually one of my favorite days.  But last Friday changed my opinion of Fridays.  Shortly after my dad came home from work he started watching the weather radar on the television. My mom was watching the updates on her iPad and they both kept discussing that the radar looked much worse than what the weathermen were forecasting.

What started off as a chance of thunderstorms became one of the most destructive and deadly fast-moving bands of severe thunderstorms in North American history. Now known as the June 2012 Mid-Atlantic and Midwest  derecho, the storm ripped over the Columbus Ohio area around 5:00 PM, with winds reported to 82 mph and causing severe damage to the power grid and it was heading our way.

I felt my parents getting nervous.  My mom called my name and then scooped me up in her arms.  She carefully put on my

Gracey in Thundershirt for cats

Me in my Thundershirt.

Thundershirt for cats while my dad went to the basement to make sure everything was in order just in case we needed to bolt.  I saw my carrier placed open and ready for me to be tucked inside.

My dad said that we had until 6:15 before the storm would visit us, so my mom said she was going to work a little longer.  But in only a few minutes she came out of the office and said, I think we should shut everything down. I don’t have a good feeling about this storm.  The last time she said that, a tornado took the roof off of our kitchen!  So then my dad started to pace.  I don’t think he was marking his territory but I am pretty sure he was showing signs of stress.

My mom shut down the computer and unplugged nearly everything in the house. Then she picked me back up and the three of us waited.  The wind came 30 minutes earlier than expected and  tree branches  began to snap off and smack up against the house. Lawn chairs, popup tents, and all sorts of summer backyard items were flying by the windows.  Our neighbors giant maple trees were bent over into an impossible yoga position. The power blinked and passed out.

Generators, Chain Saws, Fans, Power Trucks and Giant Wood Chippers

I heard the whir of our generator starting up. My dad really wanted a standby generator but my mom wasn’t convinced.  He can do the told you so dance now for the rest of our days because we were super lucky to have this source of power. My mom was still squeezing me so I squirmed a bit and she let me down to look around to make sure my sun room was alright.

The next days were filled with the roar of chain saws, and as each day passed the din grew as  more neighbors added generators to run their refrigerators and fans.  Big trucks rolled up and down the street with the tree eating machines that make a super loud noise.

Then on Monday, our lights came on and the generator turned off.  And almost before we could put our paws down from saying “Super Hurrah” there was an explosion and our generator started back up because the power went back off. Our neighbors tree was on fire where one of the branches was dangling on the power line. ~sigh~

The workers from American Electric Power (AEP) and Alabama Power worked round the clock under hot and humid conditions to restore power.  They were super nice. One of the Alabama Power workers told us that they might be more thrilled than the home owners when power is restored. He said there is no feeling in the world like when it is pitch black and then they see the sprinkling of lights dispersing across the darkness as power is restored. And of course there is the loud collective shouts of joy from the homeowners too.

Firecrackers, Fireworks and Garbage Trucks.

Gracey crouching from loud noises

The loudest week of my life

We had a couple more thunderstorms, endured firecrackers and bottle rockets. Then on the 4th of July, a giant truck rolled down the street and we heard the chain saws.  My mom even seemed happy to hear the chain saw this time and she doesn’t like it one bit when trees are taken down. Then the power guys used a long fishing type toy to place something called a blow out back into place on the pole behind our house. And in a few minutes, our generator shut off and we had electricity.

The next morning while I was enjoying the cool morning air through the screen door in the office, I let out a big sigh of relief.  Then out of no where and on the wrong day, the super spooky  garbage truck growled down our street.  I bolted and my mom laughed a bit, and she said, I am sorry Gracey, I think this was the loudest week of your life.

I hope the rest of our summer is quieter.

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  1. A fun fact: the Thundershirt is based on Temple Grandin’s work. She is an animal scientist and professor (and autistic, which makes her even more interesting) who developed the concept of a squeeze chute that calms cattle heading for the slaughterhouse. I have heard of Thundershirts for several years but I never made the connection. I hope she gets some royalties!

  2. TXLadyPatriot says

    Awww … Gracey, I had a feeling you’d be ~shivering~ … but I’m glad you and your mom & dad are okay. I hope it helped make you feel better to share your story. You’re such a sweetheart! Love and nose taps! <3

  3. Wow, you really had a tramatic few days, sweet Gracey. I am so glad you are all safe and things are back to normal for you again. xoxoxoxo

  4. Gracey, on behalf of the Alabama Power crews that came your way, you’re welcome.

    I’m sending this link to their supervisors, and we’ll be sure they get a chance to read this when they get home.

    • Ike,
      That is super nice of you too. I really liked that story of how great they feel when the lights sprinkle across the darkness. For all the damage, they sure did work fast. Thank you again for everything.

  5. pedrolobo says

    Pets to you, Gracey! Hope your weekend is terribly boring.

  6. That was horrible, Gracey. How brave you are. I didn’t know you were in that storm. Good thing no one got hurt.

  7. Well Gracey what a week for you!! My kitties thought they had a bad week last week because the roofers put a new roof on our house because a couple months ago tree branches fell on it and put a hole in it and broke some rafters in the attic….it was quite noisy here too! Glad it has gotten a little bit quieter for you! Stay safe!

  8. My goodness Gracey, you sure have been through a lot. I’m glad all of you are okay. Let’s all hope the rest of the summer is uneventful!

  9. Ahhh, I am sorry you were scared Gracey. We didn’t get the storm down here (NC) but we do have lots of heat (100+degrees) during the day. Hope all stays quiet for you now.Hugs and prayers coming your way! ^„^<

  10. I forgot about the roof!!!!! All those buckets!

  11. Glad you are alright. Storms are scary. My kitties hate the trash truck they growl at it while running to hide.

  12. PetsWeekly says

    Gracey, you must have been terrified! Im glad you and your mom and dad are are super lucky to have who plan ahead. You’re such a brave kitty!

  13. Liz Rollins says

    Did the Thunder Shirt help you, Gracey? I am thinking of getting one for one of my cats. I am so thankful you all are safe!

  14. PetNewsandViews says

    Glad you are all okay.