No, I haven't forgotten everyone here. It's just been crazy lately. I thought I'd post a bit from a letter to another friend to let you all know what's been going on. abluv - go ahead and discuss the book without me - not sure when I'll get a chance to post again unitl my computer gets fixed! ********************************************************** Hi! Yes, I have power, but alas, no modem yet. I've been told that it is going to cost anywhere from $50 - $100 to get a new one! Yikes! Plus now the whole computer is on the fritz, so it has to go to the shop. I'm going to try to get it there this weekend. Most everyone has power now. It's just a matter of finishing the tree clean-up, replacing broken telephone poles and stuff. Food pantries are passing out what they have, no questions asked. The grocery stores are being very nice and having "stock up" sales. Your basic stuff at really good prices. Some people's insurances are paying out also, but I haven't had a chance to call mine about that yet. I ended up staying with my parents because not only did my electric go out, so did my phone and I have a land line! Four days without my CPAP was NOT fun! Oh well, I did survive. I spent all day Tuesday after the storm trying to cook everything in Mom's freezer. I was tired. They were very blessed in that they did not have any damage to their home. Branches came down from the ome tree, but they were small and did no damage. People lost as little as a few roofing tiles to as much as the entire roof being blown away. Siding was ripped off of homes. Stop signs were hurled through car windows. Huge trees were torn up by their roots. And the sun was shining the entire time. It was the most amazing thing to behold. Three people were killed state-wide. I know of one for sure that was killed due to a falling tree limb. People were reporting that they had to comb the neighborhood to retrive their patio stuff. My patio table and umbrella tried to take a dive into the pond but the fence stopped them, thank goodness! Kids were reporting that they were out in that storm riding their scooters and skateboards while holding on to trash bags. They said it was a blast. It should have been, since it was reported that the gusts were moving as high as 75 miles per hour! After the wind stopped blowing it got interesting. Some people had power and some didn't. There was no rhyme or reason to the outages. My parents had no electric, but the people across the street were only out for a few hours. Folks were fighting over D batteries and ice. The price of gas went up to $4 a gallon, if you could find a station that had power so you could pump. The electric company called in backup from other states because they were looking at over 3 million state-wide that did not have power. The govenor declared a state of emergency, so that allowed state contractors to help with the restoration process. The hotels and restaurants that had power did a booming business. Most of the school districts have used up the majority of their five calamity days and it's not yet February. There's supposed to be a piece of legislature on the floor now that will allow schools to make up any missed days over time instead of having to cram them all in at the end of the school year. That would be a blessing! School was closed until Friday. Even then, we still had to deal with brown outs. We made it back to school this week, but the technology is still rough. I had to put a work order in on the computer that's in my room, but they haven't come to fix it yet. I'm limping along until they come, but it's frustrating. But all in all, that storm made everyone a little more aware of each other. Neighbors hanging with neighbors, families taking care of each other. Sharing. So that's been my life for the last two weeks. What's happening with you?