The night the lights went out in Stone Mountain | atlanta portrait photographer

September 13, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

As many across America know, Hurricane Irma attacked Georgia, or at least parts of Georgia on Monday. The day started off fine. It was overcast and a bit windy. We were well beyond breezy at this point. We knew the storm was coming and prepared for it best we could. At first, I thought closing the schools for 2 days was a bit much. Now I think they did the right thing. I know I didn't want my son riding the bus in all of that rain and wind nor did I want to have to drive to pick him up in that rain and wind. Even though today wasn't storming, just a little bit of rain, I understand why they didn't go to school today. There are trees and power lines down everywhere, along with debris. It looks a mess, kind of like a teenager's room who has clothes strewn all over the floor.

One of the things that I had hoped wouldn't happen did...we lost power. Things were going great. I was editing my latest session and doing a few other things when the lights started flickering. I said, "Please don't let the lights go out." Well, that prayer wasn't heard. As the wind whipped the trees and the rain, we lost power. Fortunately, I have a UPS (uninterruptible power supply, or something like that) which allowed me to save my work and turn off my computer. I didn't always have one of these, but after spending about 10-15 minutes in photoshop on a special image the power went out. This was my reaction:

I don't experience that look anymore. Yay! Getting back to the story...so the lights are off and I'm in my office, which is in the basement. I do have windows and since it was around 4:00 p.m., there was still enough light for me to get out of my basement safely. My husband who was working and my son and I all met in the living room. I opened up all of the blinds at the front of the house to let the most light in. My husband and I were fine, my son, however, wasn't taking it very well. OMG! He couldn't play his PS4 anymore! Oh, the horror! Whatever. I guess it wouldn't have been so devastating if he hadn't just finished practicing his trumpet so he could play his video game. Who am I kidding? He would have been devastated no matter what. Ah well...such is life.

So as we were progressively getting bored, we decided to play a game. Since my husband is the pickiest of the three, we let him choose the game. What game did he select? Monopoly. Anyone who has ever played Monopoly knows that it can take FOREVER to finish. In fact, I don't know if I have ever really finished a game of Monopoly. Usually, we get to a point where everyone is just tired of playing and it doesn't matter who wins. We just stopped. Anyway, I opened up more blinds and we proceeded to play. As time went on it got darker and darker. Eventually, we were playing by candlelight. The entire scene could have been romantic or scary because it kind of looked like we were about to hold a seance. Considering my and my husband's eyes aren't what they used to be, we would sometimes have to use the flashlight to read the Chance or Community Chest cards. Heck, it even got a little difficult to read the names of the properties on the board. 

Well as time progressed and we still didn't have any power, we decided we needed to get something to eat. We really didn't want to open the fridge because we wanted all of the cold air to stay in there. We had already had sandwiches earlier, so we (mostly my husband) wanted to venture out to see what we could find. One thing we found was a road blocked with caution tape because of a downed tree. We also saw lots of fallen branches and leaves everywhere, as well as other cars. I was quite surprised as to how many people had ventured out. (Don't ask me why I was surprised.) Stone Mountain was pretty dark and we were told by a neighbor that the only thing open was Wal-Mart. There was nothing that we wanted at Wal-Mart. So we went to Tucker and they had power! In fact, there were several restaurants open. Mickey D's and Burger King had lines around the building. There was a Chinese restaurant, Longhorn and a wing/bbq place open. We eventually settled on Papa John's pizza. No matter where we went, there were plenty of people trying to get food. 

We made it back home safely, finished off the pizza and played Monopoly until our son went bankrupt. We tried to call it before we left, but he was determined to be bankrupt before the game could end. So the time had come for my husband and me to count up our money and property. Of course, he was trying to claim himself as the winner, but I told him he would have to prove it. Ha ha! I won! In yo face! 

Even though Monopoly should be called Marathon and it took a few hours to play, we had a great time! We were about to play Qbitz, but it was after 11:00 p.m. Not that we had anywhere to go the next day, but it was still late and we were tired. We said we'd play the next day and we all went to bed. Well before we could play, the power came back on around 11:00 a.m. It was a double-edged sword. I was glad that the power was back on because I could stop worrying about our food spoiling, but our family time would be cut short. My husband returned from walking the dog and then sat on the couch catching up on all the news he missed. Our son sat on the loveseat playing games on his phone. At that point, I declared that we schedule a family day/night where we would do something fun as a family instead of everyone sitting in the same room not communicating with each other. When the power went out we may have been in the dark, but we were together and actually interacting in a fun way. I want that, but I don't want to have to lose the power to make it happen. 

Do you have a story about your experience with Hurricane Irma? If so, just drop me a note. I'd love to read about it! Everyone take care and be safe during this tumultuous hurricane season!

 


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