Bet you’re all expecting this to be a totally romantic post? Well, sorry to disappoint – it ain’t!
For those not living on this island, we’ve had the worst winter for storms and winds in a very very long time. We are sinking in mud here at Oldfarm. You cannot walk on the lawn – it is just like a sponge. The pigs are totally fed up of the mud, as are the dogs, cats and hens. The only ones enjoying it all are the ducks – and boy, they are loving it.
So far we have lost 6 Rowan trees, our last Crab Apple tree, a really old Victoria Plum tree, the roof off the fuel shed and a pig ark!
Last Wednesday we had possibly the worst storm yet. It seemed to come out of nowhere at 2.20 pm – I remember the time as we were just moving an injured piglet into the ‘nursery’. Once the job was done, we could hardly open the door to get back into the house, the winds had grown in such intensity.
As I stood in the kitchen looking out at the polytunnel, I was sure we were going to loose it. The roof seemed to be lifting off it. Thankfully it survived.
The storm howled about us until about 7 pm and then disappeared just as quickly as it had arrived.
Then, just when you think everything is good, the electricity went. So it was early to bed on Wednesday night.
The electricity was still gone on Thursday morning when we got up. The skies were still dark and ominous….. so in order to see what we were doing, yes, we had breakfast by candlelight!
Besides not having any light, a power cut means that we have no water! Our well is 100 feet deep and needs power to pump it up to get it to the house.
It is very hard to plan your day when you’ve no power, but we did get jobs done.
When the power eventually came back on at 5.30 pm we were chatting about the worst bits, and what we would have done if it had lasted longer.
- We were lucky that the freezer was packed to the brim, and we did not open it during the outage, and had been offered a small generator from a neighbour if it had continued.
- We must stock up on rechargeable batteries – and have them charged!
- Being without internet and phone was strange but doable!
- Water was our biggest issue. Thankfully we have a rainwater barrel that was full, but we must invest in another.
- We kept the stove in the kitchen going at a low level and decided in a ‘worst case’ scenario we could have brought a mattress down and slept in the kitchen! And we also have open fireplaces in most rooms.
- The Big Green Egg came into its own! Alfie made a pile of bread on it, and dinner was also cooked on it. We need to keep stocked up on charcoal 🙂
There are still some 4/5,000 people still without power a week later.
So I guess the lesson learned is we should be like the boy scouts and be prepared. How do you manage when you have a power failure?