Penguin Flashlights To The Rescue

We knew the storm was coming as we followed its progress up the east coast. My parents called  Saturday morning to let us know it was already snowing in New York, so we knew it wouldn’t be be long.  Snowing in New York in October was rare indeed and when the weather report told us to expect perhaps a foot of snow before Halloween we couldn’t believe it.  In the end we got less than half a foot but what we got was worse,  much worse.  About 4 – 6 inches of wet, heavy snow fell on Northampton and the Pioneer Valley area that still had a fairly heavy tree canopy because of an unusually wet and mild Autumn.  The recipe was a disaster.  Wet snow, leaves on the trees, something had to give

Sophie (holding a penguin flashlight) on a very dark Main St. the 1st night of the blackout.

and in very short order it was the trees.  Within a few hours after the snow began to fall large tree limbs began to snap sending many down onto power lines.  As the night went on more broke along with entire trees that came down, and with six hours after the first snowflake about a million people lost power in Central and Western New England.   Around 6 p.m. the lights began to flicker in our home, and I had a feeling that the lights would soon be going off completely, so we began to scour our home for candles, matches, flashlights, portable radio’s and batteries. Then I remembered that the day before I received a shipment of 48 Penguin Flashlights, batteries included.  The batteries included part is important because without them the flashlights are useless.  The lights flickered one last time at 6:38 pm and then darkness.  The kids shrieked with delight as we lit our candles, although when they realized this was not a game, and nothing worked (including the tv and computer) they were not so delighted. With our candles and the one or two flashlights we were able to find our way upstairs to Penguin Place and there like some buried treasure was the case of penguin flashlights, ripping the box open like a kid on Christmas morning. One by one my kids and I took the flashlights out of their packaging, put in the batteries and turned them on, triumphantly bringing them downstairs were they would illuminate our nights for the next two adventurous evenings. We even used them to explore our blacked out, snowy neighborhood.  During the daytime when some of my daughters friends came over we gave them flashlights if they didn’t have any.  Our electricity finally did come back on Monday morning, and the snow is mostly gone, but thanks to our penguin flashlights illuminating our way a couple of potentially very scary dark nights were fun and bright.  Now, if only those flashlights could have made coffee.

My daughter Sophie (left) and her friend Frida with our penguin flashlights during the blackout

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