BLOGGING IN THE DARK
May 1, 2011
I was told that revolution was just three missed meals away. For me, revolution would begin the first time I couldn't flush my toilet.
Luckily, the water treatment plant that services our area wasn't damaged in the storms. We've had clean, running water this whole time and for that I'm very grateful!
I've actually figured out that the lack of power doesn't bother me as much as I thought it would. Of course, I'm going on the assumption that the situation is only temporary, but still, most of the things I do don't require much electricity. It's inconvenient, but not terrible. I think if this had to be long term or permanent, I'd miss the internet the most. If for no other reason than because I have friends I'd never hear from again without internet access, which sucks. Oh well, that is just life in these modern times, right? Right now I've still got my iPad and iPod, which can be charged in the car to keep me from going completely technologically cold turkey, and the odd minute or so I can use Steve's phone to read Twitter or Facebook to make sure my friends are still out there. Not so bad, actually.
It's weird how empty the town feels. A lot of people got out of Dodge and off to greener, better lighted pastures once they realized how long we'd be off the power grid. I know that there are still plenty of people out here, but Huntsville is (contrary to popular belief) kind of a big town. I'm used to at least a modest amount of traffic and noise, even out here in the suburbs. The most cars I've seen in my immediate area lately have been at Target or Publix, and even then, there aren't as many as I've seen there before.
I made breakfast on a Sterno hot plate today!
We found one at a sporting goods store nearby, and we were very lucky to find it! Almost every piece of camp cooking equipment was snatched up long before we got there. The only reason it could even do us a bit of good was because I still had 2 leftover cans of Sterno from 2006, when I got an indoor s'mores maker. See, my magpie-like shopping habits have helped us out more than once during this ordeal! You can't find propane or sterno for love or money around here right now. I also had a little, tiny cast iron skillet that I got from my mother's house when she moved, and it fit perfectly over the flame. We keep finding little blessings around each corner these days.
We went to Mr. Lee's house again for another shower, and then over to my mom's house to take them some ice and charcoal. They'd been staying in Decatur, but had come home today to check on their dog and clean out their freezer. Poor them, they had only recently ordered a bunch of meat from Obama Steaks (actually Omaha Steaks, but my mom got confused) and she gave us some. We took a bit, but because we still have no power, we couldn't take as much as she was offering! My sister, who lives out in the willy-wags of Elkmont can take the rest, since their power has already been restored. Once again, we had steak for dinner, and we are vey blessed to have such good food, but I'll be honest, I'm getting tired of grilled meat. It's a treat most of the time, but having so much so often is getting cloying. I'd be happy to have a peanut butter sandwich at this point. We're also getting pretty good at baking stuff on the grill! We have managed not to burn anything yet, and honestly, that's a better track record than I have with the oven! :)
I think the dogs are going to be sad once everything gets back to normal. We've been giving them whatever leftover steak we couldn't keep, and they've been in hog heaven. Since we've been keeping the window in the kitchen open for the cross breeze, I've just been lifting the screen and feeding them the chunks of meat from right there. I think they have come to believe that it is some kind of magic doggie drive through restaurant.
As I had settled down for my new evening activity of crocheting in the semi-dark and listening to my iPod, at about 7:50, I was suddenly shocked into almost swallowing my tongue when the light next to my chair snapped on! It scared me! We heard cheers up and down our street as the streetlights came on, and seemingly every outside light flicked on as well. Steve and I stood in the middle of our living room just staring around. I felt like one of the monkeys at the beginning of the movie 2001: A Space Oddessy, cowering and throwing sticks at the big monolith they didn't understand.
We knew there was a chance that the power could just as easily go off again while the power company tweaked the grid, so we made sure not to run through the house flipping on everything that plugged in! I spent the next hour or so washing out the interior of the fridge, and washing dishes. Hey, you have your way of celebrating and I have mine! :) Unfortunately, we think the fridge no longer works. It makes sounds, but it isn't getting cold. Possibly, the power popping off like it did might have fried the wiring. That sucks so bad, because the fridge is not even a little bit old. Also, it's going to take me a year to remove all of my magnets and stuff from the front if we have to get a new one. :)
I'm very thankful that we have power again, and I hope it stays on instead of teasing us by going off just as we are getting used to it. I do have to admit, though, a part of me is really going to miss the quiet evenings. I enjoyed sitting in the semi-dark with the windows open, listening to the neighborhood dogs bark and not having the tv on constantly. It was nice. Don't worry, though, I didn't love it enough to go Amish or anything. I enjoy air conditioning, hot showers, and cooking without open flames too much. If I feel the need for a quiet evening again sometime soon, I'll just turn off the lights and listen to whale songs or something on the iPod. :)