Lighting, Planes, Bikes and Boats

photo of a turtle swimming underwater

I was looking forward to our (my wife and I) Viking cruise on the Rhine on Saturday, June 25th. I hadn’t flown in since COVID had begun, which was over 2 years ago. This was unusual as I guess I have flown 1,000 times in my life since I use to fly quite a bit for work.

It was good evening as rain was falling with one lighting strike that sounded quite a bit of distance away. I was writing a response on Bill James Online my favorite baseball site. Then it happened a large boom (thunder) while the screen on my computer flashed turn white and went off. I heard my wife screaming and ran in the next room to see if she was all right. She told me a piece of something came off the wall and hit her hand.

I then looked in my kitchen and saw a big hole in the wall that I could see outside a little. I then called the fire department who arrived 5 minute later. Meanwhile my wife and I got our two dogs, two cats, our tortoise, and a small lizard out to our car. We also took out some valuables. While on the phone with the 911 operator I had to ask her to speak louder as I had ringing in my ears from the thunder. I still have minor ringing in my ears a month later.

The fire fighters searched the house for any burning. Two of them had to crawl across the entire house in the attack to make sure there was no burning up there. In my office where I was sitting we found the surge protector which was by my feet had blown up. The thermostat by our family room had blown off the wall and a piece of that was what hit my wife. Also in our office, our shedder came apart some. There was paper in the shedder and why it didn’t burn up I had no idea.

On the advice of the fire captain and using common sense we stayed at my in-laws that night. We had our five animals, (the turtle slept in the kitchen in a box barely bigger than him) with kitty litter in a small bedroom. We weren’t able to sleep comfortably anyway worried about our house. We talked about possibly cancelling our vacation. Spoiler alert: We did go on our vacation.

On Sunday morning first thing we did was to bring our poor tortoise home. Sunday we had rain and with two holes in our house that needed to be covered up. The captain of the fire fighters mentioned the importance of getting this done to prevent further damage to our home.  Being Sunday, we weren’t getting a good response from our insurance company. So, we asked our neighbor who is a handy man if he could patch up the two holes in the side of our house. He found a couple of items to help cover the holes in his garage. We gave him some money for this as we were really grateful as it had started to rain.

On Monday morning we had the electrician turn on the electricity at our house. The good news was the electricity worked through most of the house. Later in the week we found some of the bad news is some things like our furnace and hot water heater were fried by the lightning (no hot showers). We are still working on getting both fixed through our insurance company.

That is enough about insurance. The other thing on Friday we found out the friend we were going to travel with that our returned flights from our cruise were cancelled. She used to be a travel agent and lucky for us was keeping up on the flights. This wasn’t good as we were coming back from Basel, Switzerland. After some confusion on our part, I got ahold of Viking, and they got us new flight for the three of us returning right after the cruise. The travel agent (the wife) of our travel friends was staying longer as she was going to visit with their son who had just moved to the Netherlands from Wisconsin.  These flights weren’t as good, but beggars can’t be choosy. We now had three flights instead of two, were coming into Denver at close to midnight. We also had a tight connection in New York after going through customs. Not the best but we had a flight home. However, didn’t helped our morale about the trip when we were still getting out house together.

On Saturday we went to our travel friends house as they live in Castle Rock a lot closer to the airport. We did our Covid tests to get our certificates on line at their house. They were no longer required but we all decided to play it safe. On line we had to show our ID to the phone and have the camera on us as we swabbed our nose. However, at the end the person asked each of us how many lines there was on the card. We each had one so none of us had Covid. However, we each thought we could have lied on the result.

That evening we went downtown in Denver as my daughter and her fiancé were attending Comic Con. We had a nice dinner and went to sleep when we got back as we were going to get up early the next day for our flights.

Next, will be the fly out day.

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