The second official day of winter proved to be a celebration of renewal under sweet sun, blue sky and a white carpet left by the midweek snowstorm.
Eighty-nine-year-old Dave Sibbernsen, who lives near Elk City, Neb., stirred Saturday morning, his life gradually returning to normal.
The storm had knocked out his electrical power, but it was no big deal to the retired cattle buyer. He did fine with candles and a flashlight.
A propane heater in the basement kept the temperature in the house in the upper 50s. He used milk containers previously filled with water to flush the toilet, which is fed by a well, which is driven by an electrical pump.
But his wife, Phyllis, viewed these inconveniences a bit more critically. She went to their son's place in Council Bluffs for greater comfort.
“I got along all right,” said Dave Sibbernsen, who wore black suspenders, a blue shirt and jeans. “That happens in the country.”
An Omaha Public Power District crew restored power to his house, roughly eight miles north of the Elkhorn area, Friday night.
About 41,000 customers lost power in the metro area, including some in Omaha itself. OPPD said Saturday that it had finished the job of restoring power lost in the storm.
The entire region, including western Iowa, enjoyed sun and temperatures in the 30s on Saturday. The next three days are predicted to be colder.
AccuWeather, The World-Herald's weather consultant, said today and Monday will be partly sunny with highs around 20 degrees.
Temperatures will drop further on Tuesday. The high in the Omaha area will be around 9 degrees, meteorologist Mike Pigott said. But snow is not in the Midlands' forecast over the next three days.
Todd Pfitzer, Omaha's city engineer, said public works crews would continue to treat icy spots on Omaha streets as needed. Street conditions had improved to the point that Omaha police were once again responding to all property damage accidents.
Some in the Omaha area made the most of the sun and relative warmth Saturday.
From a distance, Sue Nelson and her dog, Lucky, were dots on a vast field of snow. City crews Friday cleared a path around Churchich Park near 60th and Grover Streets, which pleased Nelson and by all appearances delighted Lucky.
The 8-year-old Vizsla breed's day usually begins standing in front of the door, anticipating a walk. He wasn't disappointed Saturday.
Nelson and her dog circled the big park Saturday afternoon, Lucky tugging on a long leash and Nelson occasionally trotting along behind.
“I'm just glad that they scooped the sidewalk,” Nelson said. “So I'm good. ... It keeps me grounded.”
Dave Sibbernsen didn't complain about OPPD or the power outage he'd endured. “I think they do a pretty good job,” he said.
The temperature inside his tidy house had risen. He washed dishes.
He needed to have the place in order because he had good news concerning his wife. “She's coming back today,” he said.
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