BLIZZARD

 

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Copyright — Kelly Sands

Once again it’s time for us to show our creativity and write a new story for the Friday Fictioneers’ weekly challenge. This challenge is to write a story with no more than 100 words. It’s to have a beginning, middle, end, and follow the picture prompt supplied for that week. The gracious hostess for this challenge is the talented author and artist Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. The prompt for this week is a photo supplied by Kelly Sands. Thanks Kelly.

http://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2014/07/09/11-july-2014/

Genre: Β Nonfiction

Word Count: Β 100 Words

BLIZZARD by P.S. Joshi

Well into the winter of 1977-78, we were living in an apartment in northeast Ohio. Our son was about 1 1/2 and I was 8 months pregnant with our daughter.

The local radio station gave a blizzard warning. It was so quiet outside you could hear yourself breathe. It seemed human movement in the city had stopped.

Then it began. It snowed and snowed and snowed. Soon there was news of shelter for people in areas lacking electricity. Calls came in from farmers without electricy and with cows to be milked. Were there generators available?

Fortunately, we didn’t lose electricity.

friday-fictioneers

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70 thoughts on “BLIZZARD

  1. Good Days and a good place to be in.
    A little wind and they shut off the electricity here. The: country is practically living on inverters and generators.
    Its a good piece friend. πŸ™‚

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    • Thanks Sandra. Northeast Ohio is very close to Canada so we get some really cold temperatures and a lot of snow and ice. Lakes freeze over. In the summer it can get very hot. I’ve heard that the climate in England is usually much milder. Our children were raised in North Carolina and my daughter was thrilled when she moved to Chicago and the lake froze over. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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    • Thanks Dloretimnidian. I wrote that story for Friday Fictioneers and we are supposed to write a story using the picture prompt of the week as the basis of our story. Anyone is welcome to write for them each week. When you write for them and read and comment on other stories, the other writers will read and comment on your’s. I’m glad you liked the story. It was nonfiction, an event that took place in my life years ago. Many of my stories are fiction. I’d be happy to read your story and give you feedback. I’m a beginning writer myself so I’m far from being an authority. I’m studying writing by subscribing to blogs on writing and reading books. I also write for Friday Fictioneers for enjoyment and to get the constructive criticism from writers more experienced than me. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  2. Poor cows! Glad you were snug and safe through it all.

    We lost our power for a week a couple of years back. We were grateful for moderate spring weather and our generator! Can’t imagine living through that kind of cold without power.

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    • Thanks Lynda. I was worried about the cows also. If they don’t get milked, they can suffer, become sick and die. Farmers with large herds of milk cows depend on their milking machines. It was a serious situation. With a small child, and pregnant with our second baby, I was seriously considering going to a shelter if we lost power. We were fortunate. Here in India the power often goes off, but the weather is warm. It becomes a real problem when the temperature goes over 100% F. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  3. Storms can be kind of exciting when no one gets hurt or loses electricity. I had an aunt who went a severe winter storm, and they lost electricity and were freezing the whole time. Not so fun! I’m glad everybody survived this one okay,including the cows.

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    • That’s right Amy. It’s really serious in the winter in a cold climate. We went through an ice storm in North Carolina once where trees and wires came down and the electricity was off for about a week. Our kids went to stay with friends who had electricity and my husband and I went to a motel in a nearby city. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  4. I’ve seen blizzards like that. So terribly quiet but the damage can be significant. It’s strange to experience, and then you start seeing the news reports. I love your description of this.

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    • Thanks Al. That was such an eerie stillness. I remember another like it in a place where my parents and I stopped to sightsee while on a trip. We read afterwards that a tornedo had struck there shortly after that. I always hoped also that the cows got milked in time. That would be a big problem for a farmer with a dairy herd. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  5. So much to reflect upon here. I’d never thought, before, about how dependent we are on electricity. The silence you described may be like having the eye of a hurricane pass over before the other side hits.
    Ellespeth

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    • Thanks Ellespeth. We’re no doubt even more dependent on electricty today than we were then. We now need to recharge cell phones, etc. I never thought about that silence in that way, but that might be true. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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    • Thanks Russell. I know just what you mean. We used to get those ice storms when we lived in North Carolina. The ice weighs down the electric wires and they break. Also, many of the trees there have shallow roots and come down easily. We were without electricity about a week one time. A big tree came down on our roof and cracked a beam. One of the limbs broke off at that point and drove with force like a lance right into the front lawn. We had gone out to eat, so weren’t at home. Our neighbor described the noise to us when we came back. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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    • Thanks Patrick. It was definitely not a good time for that storm. We were fine, but heard that a young child had tragically gone outside and they found his body later in a drift. You were right; it should have been “breathe.” I fixed it. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  6. I’ve heard about this blizzard (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Blizzard_of_1978). There was one in Massachusetts, (the Boston area and surrounding towns) as well, but probably not as terrible as the one in Ohio. My husband recounts it in a vivid way, and I feel as though I’d been in it.
    Good story, and an interesting one, because you went into non-fiction. I loved the contrast between your worry for the cows and dairy farmers, and the sense that you were counting your blessings, being eight months pregnant (and no doubt worried) and having electricity during that harrowing time.
    Nicely done!

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    • Thanks Vijaya. And thanks for the link. We were in Kent, Ohio, at the time. It’s only about 20 miles from Cleveland. It was scary. I think our being so close to the city may have been the reason the electrictiy stayed on. We were living in an apartment behind Kent State University. The University had been closed so we saw no one outside. Probably mostly only emergency vehicles and 4-wheel drives were out after people heard the warnings. We had the radio on tuned to the local station. —Susan

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  7. i felt that this was a true story when i read it. how very fortunate. one of the things i hate about storms is the loss of electricity. we’ve been through quite a few. ugh. i hope that i don’t experience it again. a well told memoir.

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  8. This reminds me of when my son was about a year and a half old and my furnace stopped working in the middle of a blizzard. We stayed in the house despite the growing cold because the repairman said he’d be right there. It was twelve hours later that he showed up. At the time i really ,really wished we had a fireplace.

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    • Thanks Rochelle. I know what you mean. We lived in North Carolina for a number of years and we got those ice storms there. They caused a lot of damage. Besides the power lines coming down, the trees there has shallow root systems and often fell because of the weight of the ice. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  9. While I loved living on the east coast, I must admit I do NOT miss the snow storms, icy roads, and blizzard-like cold. Now all I contend with are endless months of gray skies, rainy downpours, and damp cold that seeps through to my bones. Now I tell you…who wouldn’t want THIS…instead of THAT? Now don’t everyone rush out and buy plane tickets to Seattle… 😦

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  10. I like the image of the snowbound city: “It seemed human movement in the city had stopped” – it just underlines the sense of isolation you must have felt.

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  11. Thanks Hugmamma. It seems every area has its good points and not-so-good points. We’d settle for some of that rain where we live. They’ve started water restrictions. I don’t really miss all that snow and ice either. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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    • Thanks Perry. It’s no fun to be without heat in the winter. If you were in New York in 1978, you probably felt some of the effects of that weather front also. I understand Boston was hit hard at that time. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  12. After reading, I wondered if this was truth or fiction. Who would have thought of cows needing to be milked! That would be a crisis. Glad your electricity stayed on.

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    • Thanks Patti. I know what you mean. I wouldn’t have thought of the cows either unless I’d heard the reports on the local radio station. Dairy farmers with bigger herds really depend on those milking machines. Those cows have to be milked every day. Our electricity probably stayed on because we were closer to the university and the center of town. —Susan

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    • Thanks Sarah Ann. It was even very still before it started to snow. After the storm warning, businesses and schools were no doubt closed and people just stayed home. It was an eerie silence. I’m glad you liked the story. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  13. Dear Susan, I hadn’t thought about the cows either, although I used to when Aunts & Uncles had dairy farms. What a huge problem – If you just have a few cows – no problem, but with generators, that helps a lot! Now, if you don’t have generators – then the cow mooing the loudest gets hand milked the quickest. Ouch – that sounds like it would hurt – poor cows! Great story as usual! Nan πŸ™‚

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    • Thanks Nan. I wouldn’t have thought about the cows either unless I’d heard the news on the local radio station. I always hoped they got the needed generators or lots of extra help. Poor cows indeed. Not being milked in time no doubt begins to be painful. The local government had called for emergency vehicles and 4-wheel-drive vehicles to help take medical staff to the local hospital, so maybe they also came to the aid of the farmers. I’m glad you liked this story and my other stories. Thanks for the encouragement. πŸ™‚ —Susan

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  14. i bet those farmers sighed a huge sigh of relief after that storm! i enjoyed reading a snippet from your own family adventures, Patricia. blizzards are nothing to laugh about!

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