Ever-Changing Reflection

Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding... It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self. Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquility.
~ Kahlil Gibran

Thursday, September 1, 2011

That Time When...

This idea just came to me: To record those memorable (or not-so-memorable) life moments on this blog using a bit of that Friends theme. For your edification (or warning), I'll use the above title for all of these posts.

Let's get right into it.

That time when... we lost power for four days courtesy of Hurricane Irene and National Grid. As you may or may not know, Hurricane Irene made her way up the East coast this past weekend, hitting New England early Sunday.

I wasn't overly concerned; I thought it was going to be a bust. I even partied for her arrival Saturday night at Gillette Stadium for Kenny Chesney's Goin' Coastal tour (amazing, by the way). I glaced above to watch the show lights illuminate rapidly moving dark clouds, but I just thought it was a cool effect to an already crazy, to-heck-with-the-weather atmosphere. The bands seemed to play on forever, throwing their collective middle finger up at the rain, and by the end of the night, the set list had been swept away.

Sunday morning was a different story -- although, as Kenny promised, I did wake up with the words to Out Last Night running through my brain. I also woke up to no power, rain and some pretty impressive (but no where near scary) gusts of wind. No biggie. We'll unplug for the day, hang out in our PJ's, play Monopoly and order delivery for dinner. We went over to Jed's parents after dinner to make s'mores over their grill and chill in the candlelight.

I got kinda freaked when I woke up Monday morning still without power; I was not used to this (the longest I had been without power was, maybe, six hours). I admit that I used a vacation day at work to emotionally deal with the entire situation. I emptied the freezer and brought everything to my parents' house since they got power back. I used the time without TV to fold two loads of laundry that had been waiting around for over a week. I tidied up the house. I went for a run to assess the neighborhood damage and pick up the fallen branches in the yard. I finished the book I was reading. When Jed got out of work, we ran down the street to eat dinner at a local restaurant. (Yes, it was very weird to have power a block away from our house for three days while we were in the dark.) I read by a LED camping lantern and went to bed early. The darkness was unreal, but the silver lining was being able to see the stars like never before.

Tuesday morning? Still no power. I took Morris to my parents' house, where I worked for the day and took a hot shower (oh, the cold shower on Monday was a shock). Jed drove up after work, and my parents were nice enough to feed us a good meal.

Still no power Wednesday morning. The day before, I had started following National Grid on Twitter, along with hastags #RI and #RIirene. Whoa, there was some serious bitterness going on! I was upset, but I also realized that there wasn't too much I could do besides alert them of our blackout and follow the updates. My main concern was all my food going bad in the fridge and freezer. I was grateful that all of our Omaha stuff made it safely frozen to my parents' house, and I could deal with what was left. I was also grateful that we still had water (albeit cold only) at our house.

National Grid had given us and estimated time of restoration of 6:00 p.m. Wednesday. I tried calling our house phone several times Wednesday, and it rang busy -- which indicated we still didn't have power. I had dinner at my parents' house Wednesday night, and we called, and the phone rang! By the time I got home last night, our lights were on, our fridge was running, and our clocks were flashing that glorious random time. I was so happy!

Man, I will never take electricity for granted again! It really is amazing how much we have come to rely on it. My heart goes out to those in my area who still don't have power and are facing ETR's of Sunday. I really feel for them, but I am giddy with my hot water, lights and TV right now!

What do you do when you lose power?

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