Welcome, icy Leon? Who knew we named them?

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Bar-be-cue at Jill’s!

That was the joke Tuesday morning at the office as the group gathered to talk about Winter Storm Leon – or at least that’s what they’re calling it on The Weather Channel.

I honestly didn’t know that winter storms were named like that.

Here in south Alabama, we’re equipped to deal with hurricanes. And while we haven’t had to deal with one in a while (thank goodness), there isn’t a soul around who doesn’t know to stack up the lawn furniture and to make sure there’s enough gas for the grill if we lose power.

On Monday afternoon, everyone was aflutter about the possibility of snow. Me, I was more worried about the ice underneath the snow. County EMA Director Susan Harris gave a briefing just after lunch about the upcoming conditions, and by Tuesday morning, had sent out new projections with the instructions to hunker down.

I think that’s good advice.

Before we went to bed Monday, I instructed the girls to charge every electric device they had. After fielding 6,000 questions of “why,” I had to break it down for them.

“If we lose power, the lights will go off; the heater won’t work; the microwave won’t work – nothing will turn on,” I said. “If you want to do something fun, you’ll have to use your tablet, play your DS or heaven forbid, read a book by flashlight.”

That sobered them up a bit, and I realized they’ve never seen a natural disaster. They’ve never had to do without because trees had fallen and ripped down power lines; never not been able to call someone because the phones are dead or any of that.

It was kind of like at the ballgame the night before when my mother made a comment about a player on the opposing team.

“He’s a mini Michael Jordan,” she said. To which Ora replied, “Who’s that?”

Tuesday morning, I left the girls sleeping in their cozy beds while I did a few hours at the office. No rest (or snow days) for newspaper people, you know. Not that I’m complaining. Most people have to take a vacation day to play in the snow. Not me, and not that I’m bragging or anything.

I hope that as you’re reading this, you and your family is toasting warm, enjoying a nice cup of coffee or hot chocolate and are snuggled in with a good book. And don’t forget to send us those photos of you all playing in the snow. That is, if you have power. Stay safe, and stay warm.