There are times when I forget every day is a gift. Then, something happened, and I again began to appreciate everything I was taking for granted.
A couple of days ago, at about 4:30, our power went out. Living in a rural area, this is not uncommon. But yesterday was different.
We live just outside the city limits. Typically, when there is a power outage, it affects us and folks downriver from us. You see, the central part of my town is on a different electrical system. So when the power went out, we decided to go ahead with our plans to go grocery shopping at the store just down the street. After all, there was no reason to stay home with no electricity.
We also noticed their power was out when we got to the store. So we kept driving into town, hoping one of the other grocery stores was open. Nope, it was dark in the downtown area.
Then we saw it! Just above the central part of town was very dark smoke and flames! The hillside overlooking our little town was on fire! Of course, having lived through a devastating fire, I needed to slow down my breathing and remember that I was safe. But it was very sad seeing the houses burn up on the hill.
Along with emergency vehicles, there were lots of cars going in and out of the downtown area. The confusion was remarkably scary. We decided to go home after walking around the park by the river. Of course, the power was still out, with no promise of being restored soon.
Then the rains came, slow at first, with bursts of thunder and lightning. Then it started to pour. I said a prayer of gratitude and decided to go to bed early.
When I got into bed, I realized I had taken for granted that we would always have electricity. Without power, we had no lights, no TV, no internet, no water pump, and no heat or air conditioning (thankfully, the temperature was moderate enough to be comfortable). We are so reliant on electricity to make our lives comfortable.
Eventually (nearly 10 hours later), the power finally returned. It was still raining off and on, and the skies were still filled with smoke.
Once again, I said a quick prayer of gratitude, noting that the day is a gift, as I adjusted the clocks and powered up my computer.
I am hoping the rains put the fire out completely. And I hope those who lost their homes will find the same help we did when we lost our home in a wildfire 3 years ago.
And again, I say a prayer of gratitude because every day is a gift; we need to treat it that way.