As the boys ran around the yard looking for Easter eggs, my husband and I were discussing how normal an activity hunting Easter eggs was. In that moment we could almost pretend that we weren’t isolating ourselves from everyone. In that moment we realized that we were lucky in what security we have, that so many people have been struggling with bills and were worried about losing so much. “We’re lucky we own our home,” I said. We’re especially fortunate since he was let go from his job of 13 years in May of last year and has had no luck finding anything since. Owning our home has been a blessing we have held tight to.
That night we were slammed by a meteorological anomaly. The wind was severe. I remember turning on the local station to see what they were saying because surely they had broken into the programming to keep us updated. To my shock there wasn’t even a crawl on the screen. The wind was so insane my home was shaking. Literally shaking. The water in the fish tank was sloshing about, pictures on the wall were rattling. “This is it,” I thought, completely expecting us to be lifted up in the air like in the Wizard of Oz. I have ridden out tornado warnings in my cousin’s basement in Ohio, but this was the most scared I have ever been during a storm.
At some point through all the madness I heard what sounded like a tin can being opened, but on a much louder scale. That was the event that would change everything for us.
The power went out. The rain and wind died down, so we went out to survey what we could in the dark. There was a raging fire down around the curve. I called 911, unsure as to whether it was a structure or a blown transformer. The loud hum and mini explosions pointed to it being the latter. The fire burned until 6am the next morning. We were without power for almost a week. The NWS was perplexed by this storm and the insane destruction it caused through my area. They launched an investigation, having ruled out straight line winds and tornadoes since we had no thunderstorms. It was heavy rain and heavy wind. Yesterday it was reported to be gravity waves, which usually occur higher in the atmosphere.
The tin can sound turned out to be the roof on an abandoned house peeling back. We used to live in that house and even then it needed condemned. A few years later our home was purchased, and we rented the lot of land close to that home, owned by the same person. The roof of that house was the last straw for the land owner, my husband’s, who said if they couldn’t quickly find a buyer in the family they were going to deed the land and house over to the county. Another cousin stepped forward, and she promptly informed us that she was going to buy our home.
“At least we own our home.” What a joke. That doesn’t mean a lot if you don’t own the land.