A few winters ago, my entire state was slammed by one of the worst ice storms in a century. Winter weather is always serious in my state; it’s just a fact of life that is a nuisance of living here. But while snow storms make locals groan in annoyance, ice storms are feared. With snow, you can luck out and have the amount be really light and fluffy. Light snow means you don’t really have to deal with a lot of power outages, just perilous roads for a few hours until the plows can clear it. But with ice storms, the damage can be deadly. Instead of tree limbs hitting power lines, the immense weight of the frozen water can uproot trees entirely. Light poles are fragile as twigs, and the roads are veritable skating rinks. Live power lines broke all over, trapping us in the house until repairs were made. We had to dust off the radio, as none of the tv stations could even power on to report the news, nevermind that no one could watch it. And no power meant no HVAC. I was thankful that my parents were prepared. We used our old camp stove to cook dinner, and our gas fireplace for warmth. As unconventional as it sounds, the gas fireplace requires no electricity to work. I thought it did through a switch on the wall, but this just operates the level of the gas. Thanks to my dad keeping the pilot light on, we were able to stay warm and eat well until the power came back on a week later.