March ’93 snow one to remember

Published 8:37 pm Monday, November 23, 2009

I remember it well: My little darling had just come down to begin our new life together on Lake Mitchell. She loved it from the very beginning, but the natural beauty that we both loved was soon to give us a great challenge and test our faith.

You might remember. It was March 12 and the temperature was 76 degrees, a beautiful spring day, but they began to predict snow! Yes, snow, right here in paradise!

We had very little firewood, but we cut and stacked all the scrap that we could find and poured up plenty of drinking water as I did remember what would happen when the power went off.

We went to bed March 12 thinking surely this cannot be true. We had light rain until about midnight, and then it started snowing! The phenomenal thing was that we began to have very loud thunder and lightning and extreme high winds. Trees began to break and fall, and lights blinked a couple times and the power went off at 2:30 a.m.

Daylight revealed a record snowfall of 11-12 inches (in mid-March)! Lavada was doing fine and able to appreciate the beauty of what nature had given us—counting our blessings.

We lived on Bird Creek, and I knew that when all those trees started breaking that we would lose power and no power not only meant no lights but no heat, no water and we couldn’t get out.

Reports were the worse yet to come. The temperature fell all day. The news we got from the battery radio was depressing. We went to bed expecting 10-degree weather with high winds and a chill factor of 20-below zero! We covered ourselves with everything we could find. Of course, the fire went out. I’m certain it was the same temperature inside as outside. The record low that night in Birmingham was 2 degrees.

Our only contact with the outside was from Montgomery—a local station was running old gospel music non-stop. We tried frantically to get the power company on the phone for two days, but there was either no answer or a busy signal. Does anyone know we’re here?

Monday at 2 p.m., there was still no power. Lavada’s cards were worn out, and she had given up on solitaire.

On Tuesday, there was rain. We saw little men on poles with yellow helmets on—keep it up fellows, doing a great job. I decided to get out and see what was going on—just to see somebody—so I went up the road a couple of miles, saw a group of people and stopped to get the news.A small boy was the first to speak. “Mr. Bill, are you growing a beard?” Will someone come and get this kid! “When did your power come on?” I asked; “Come on, it didn’t even go off—we’re on REA!”

Wham! Just like that, the power came on the next day. We were without it from 2 a.m. Saturday until 8 p.m. Wednesday! I was checking the TV and all the important stuff. Whoa! I almost forgot that beautiful lady in the bathtub!”Honey, wait ‘til you see it here in the winter. Honey? Honey?” As for me, if I ever see another “ground hog,” I’m gonna shoot that stupid pig!