At 4:45PM, as I was typing a now erased entry to this blog, the power went off. Interestingly, and I’ve noticed this over time, the outage didn’t happen in an instant as happens when you flip a switch. The power flickered and fluttered and – poof – it was gone.
So, with the snow flying, and outside temperatures in the 20’s, we were plunged into darkness.
The first thing I noticed was our alarm system showed a fault. Since the alarm has battery backup, I just reset it and it was fine. Second, an older cordless phone in our spare bedroom started chirping every 20-30 seconds. It was complaining that it could no longer hear its base station. I’m sure this was a great idea when it was designed into the phone, but it’s a royal pain whenever the power goes out.
Helaine had been online, playing poker. Judging by the fact that I haven’t received any email, her hand must have been folded and folded and folded and she finally ‘blinded out.’
Steffie started rounding up candles. By the time she was done, there were nine of them, sitting on the coffee table, providing enough light to study by. In the photo on the left, the little post-it note sign says, “Festival of Lights.”
I called the power company and listened to their recorded message. There had been another, earlier outage, in the area around my house. Dispatching crews was treacherous in this weather. After being on hold for over 15 minutes, a new message was added, acknowledging the new problem that included my house. I hung up the phone.
Upstairs, I found an old Sony Watchman battery operated TV. The batteries still had a full charge, though I can’t remember the last time it was used.
This is the kind of thing authorities tell you you’re supposed to have in just this situation so you can receive emergency information. Helaine used it to watch the Cowboys and Redskins.
The reception was awful After a while she gave up on watching and listened instead.
Our heating system is based on hot water bringing warmth to air handlers in the basement and attic. In a situation like this, I worry about the system freezing and the pipes bursting. Luckily, we were back in business with the power on in around an hour.
It’s possible I’ll hear what caused the outage tomorrow. Judging by the weather, car vs. pole is always the most likely scenario.