{ Sunday, February 23, 2003 }

Ice Storm '03 Part I: Sunday


I woke up to a large crashing noise. "Hello, Tree Limbs. Do you want me to move over so you can get schnuggy in the bed? Here, why don't I just get the hell away from the windows for you instead?"

The crashing noises had been disturbing my sleep for awhile. I'm the girl who slept through her sister firing bottle rockets at her bedroom window one night. I rolled over, wondered if we were being bombed, concluded I would rather die in my sleep than in a panic and went back to bed. On both occasions.

I walked downstairs and opened the front door. Oh my. wow. Wow. fuck. WOW! Fuck! Oh my. Our front yard gave off every impression that we had, in fact, been bombed. Except that wasn't glass, that was ice. Tree limbs everywhere. I kinda walked onto the porch and saw Kristie's car in immediate danger.

"Kristie, honey, wake up. Have you looked outside today? You might want to. It's pretty bad. You need to move your car."

We walked outside. We walked around her car. For a minute we thought it was too late and Kristie almost cried. Then we saw that small miracles do happen and that limb hadn't really impaled her car. It was just frozen like that. We went back in to form a plan. The planning phase consisted of calling our moms and being told that our safety was more important than the car.

We went back outside. We tried to dig the car out. Except there was this huge limb and it was going to fall and the ice was still coming down, and well, we decided we agreed with our moms. Back in the house.

"I know. I'll call Writer Guy! He's from Wyoming. He might have some useful bit of information for us. Can I call him? I think this is an emergency. And I'm sober. I can call him. Right? Even though he dumped me a week ago? Well, hell, what's the worst that can happen? He thinks I'm a mellowdramatic pest. Well, it wouldn't be the first time that's happened. And he might be able to help us."

"Please call him. Here, use my cell phone."

I call. I am told to stay in the kitchen, away from the windows and he'll be right over. Kristie and I spend the wait chainsmoking and discussing how we don't hate him anymore.

He arrives. With tools. We make coffee and peer out the windows. He appears to be doing an excessively good job clearing off these cars. Actually, he looks thrilled. He really seems to be enjoying this more than we can imagine.

We decide that the obsessive-compulsive in us would love scraping off all that ice. Except neither of us actually even owns an ice scraper, and we don't think we're strong enough to break that much ice. But we can see how it might be fun.

Eventually, he comes in, drinks his coffee, admits to how much fun that was and declares that he is going to Wal*Mart. Kristie and I conclude that he's lost his little mind. The power goes out. He tells us that if we get too cold, we can come to his place. When we agreed to that plan, we didn't really think it would happen.

We spend the afternoon playing cards and discussing how this sucks. Also, speculating on how the cat must love this. It's like everything he's been preparing for come true. There's this theory at our house that the cat is really a Vietnam War veteran reincarnated whose attitude never left the jungle. And this other theory that our yard had turned into Bosnia. You can see how those might merge to make us think the cat was thrilled with this turn of events.

Round about three o'clock, we're cold. The laptop is out of battery, there's no more music. We're shaking too much to hold cards. We're cold and we're realizing that even if we both sleep in my smaller bed, we're still liable to freeze. I've gone outside about every twenty minutes to call my cat. Not that opening the doors matters since our house doesn't hold heat. We conclude we'd rather go to Writer Guy's than anywhere else. He calls to check on us and offer his home again, we accept. He asks us to bring candles and blankets. Also, he tells me very specifically that Kristie should drive. Please note: he's been my passenger twice. And one of those times he was so drunk I doubt he even remembers it.

We joke about what poor feminists we are as we bake up some casseroles to take over there. We have gas ranges and ovens (two of them) and I know he has electric and warm food is a good idea. We load up her car. We actually wrap the noodle dish in a blanket and then saran wrap.

We go over there. We eat. We play cards. We play some silly game that I basically suck at, but that's really rather fun, and does manage to eat up a lot of time. We play some housebreaker. I don't suck at it, so it's more fun. At like nine thrity, we climb into bed.

We listen to AM radio while this is going on. They've got this call-in format going on. I make two screwdrivers and Kristie and I drink everytime the host uses poor grammar, someone mentions terrorists, or someone wants to know more details about how to use a coffeecan to make heat. Kristie and I make short work of the drinks.

After they announced that our schools were closed the next day (not that I have class on Mondays), every five minutes or so, Kristie would gleefully announce that she didn't have class at eight am. She really did bring her school books with her so she could prepare for her quiz in case she had to go to school Monday.

At midnight, Kristie and I were back awake.
"It's only midnight?"
"Welcome to sleeping at Writer Guy's"
"I love to sleep."
"Me too."
"I hope our friends are okay."
"I'm sure they are. They'd call if they weren't."

At two, her cell phone rings. It's a friend who was supposed to have come down that day. She's not coming. Thanks.

"What will we do if our house falls down?"
"I think we demand the deposit back and find somewhere else to live."
"Oh! That would be fun!"
"It's pretty old though. I doubt it'll fall down."
"Yeah, but it's kinda falling apart."
"You mean it's not like DAAP? It's not supposed to look like that?"
"Have you ever seen the design college building at UC? The one that's all pastel and is falling over the hill?"
"The round one?"
"No, that's the nursing school... DAAP is the one with no right angles."
"On purpose?"
[we go on and on about UC for like ten minutes. Then we go back to sleep.]

At three am, I wake up again. I am not sleeping well because my cat is still missing. This time it's an absence of snoring from Writer Guy that wakes me up. I am so pathetic. I think the word for this is codependent. I can't sleep because my x boyfriend isn't sleeping.

"Why are you awake?"
"I don't know."
"well, fall asleep. You're keeping me up."
"I'm sorry. Did I move or something?"
"No. Your lack of sleep is keeping me awake."
"Oh. My bad?"
"I'm worried about my cat."
"I'm sure he's fine. He's a cat."

I wake up like eight more times before it's actually Monday. At one point, I woke up because I was hot. By morning, Kristie was sleeping on top of the sheet, under her blanket and the comforter. I was sleeping in the middle on top of the sheet and the comforter under my thirty pound corduoroy quilt. Writer Guy was sleeping under the sheet and the comforter. We all started under the same blankets. Putting Girl Who Is Like Sharing A Bed With A Campfire in the middle was a good idea and not just because it was less weird than Kristie sleeping next to Writer Guy.

Stay tuned, for Part II: Monday

posted by mary ann 9:01 AM