Still Powerless

I haven’t heard this much story telling since I was moving on college girls back in the 60s!

“We now live in a shed,” I told Helaine. That’s what our house has turned into. A two story unheated shed! There is nothing romantic about living in a shed. Any upside to ‘roughing it’ left after the first few hours without electricity late Saturday.

Yesterday afternoon one of our neighbors spoke with a dispatcher at United Illuminating. He told her we’d have lights by midnight last night. This is the fifth different anticipated repair time we’ve received.

I haven’t heard this much story telling since I was hitting on college girls in the 60s!

Once the sun went down Helaine was stuck in the house… in the dark… in the cold. Wearing a coat and wrapped in an afghan she has been listening non-stop to WFAN on the transistor radio that normally hangs in the shower. What else is there to do?

“Hi Mike, it’s Helaine in Hamden,” she could say if her cellphone had a charged battery. Of course it does not.

I checked when I came home from work. It was 48&#176 in the bedroom. Helaine wanted to cuddle. I was truly the proverbial warm body!

Our bathrooms are unflushable. One has been dedicated to a single function. The door remains closed 24/7.

I sat up in the family room for a while after work last night. I used half the newspaper, but finally lit a fire and burned our remaining wood. I’d make a terrible arsonist.

All I could think of was an ad that used to hang in Willie’s Hardware on Horace Harding Blvd. in Flushing while I was growing up. It was for CorningWare and showed a dish half in ice, half in fire. That was me–warm back, cold face.

I have no idea how families with children or folks not in good health are getting along. I really hope there is a way to take care of them first.

UI is down to 991 customers out in Hamden. How much longer til they get to us?

9 thoughts on “Still Powerless”

  1. Geoff, I have alot of firewood, you are welcome to come get some. We can offer you and Helaine a warm meal. We do have friends staying with us who don’t have power. We are so lucky to have heat and light. Wishing you both the best and hope the power comes on soon.

  2. Sorry to hear this! We lucked out in Plainfield this time around, but then we are prepared for any major outages now as we upgraded to a larger generator after Irene hit. Our goal was being able to run the boiler during the winter if need be and at least a light or two and one TV, hot water helps to and of course the fridge. Having satellite TV helps as you don’t have to worry about downed cable wires, that is as long as the dish does not get destroyed. Hope you get it back by tonight, I don’t think I would deal well with being cold, this I admit. Might want to invest in a generator, our thought is even if we don’t have to use it for 5 years, it is worth the comfort knowing we have it for these occasions.

  3. Geoff, I have a ton of wood and can bring it to you as I am off from work for the next five days. If you would like some, please feel free to contact me via this site or my email (I think you will have it from here maybe?) and I can bring you some if you like. Also, if you need a place to stay – I live in Waterford, but we have electricity, wood stove fireplace insert, and flush-able toilets. Not the most comfy full size guest bed, but a couch too, right by the wood insert. Small house with a 3 year old, but WARM.

    We were without power for seven days when Irene went through so we know what you are going through – minus the cold weather of course. We had great friends that gave us showers and fridge space which made it all that much easier. Stay safe and try to stay as warm as possible, and I can bring you wood from right now until five days from now if you would like.

  4. Why do the utility companies even bother to give estimated restoration times if they can come nowhere close to meeting them? I’m thinking it’s just b.s. to keep the customers from calling them too often. It seems to me it would be a lot better to be truthful, so that people can make arrangements for alternate accomodations, whether that be with friends/relatives, hotel/motel, warming centers or emergency shelters.

    They should not be stringing people along with faulse hope. It is truly infuriating.

  5. I know people quite near you who got their power back this afternoon around 3. So with a bit of luck, yours should be on soon. (She says with fingers and toes crossed.)

  6. I have space at my house in wolcott if you are so inclined. Got my power back last night. You can always cuddle with my Great Dane Howard. He will keep helaine warm if you can’t 😉 😉

  7. Hello-tip from some friends-melt snow in the house (if you still have some-we have a ton in my town) and use it to flush the toilets. Or, if you have a swimming pool, same trick with pool water. Desperate times…

    You must know you are fortunate to have UI. CP&L is in rough shape, as they were with Irene, and I heard they are borrowing UI crews starting tomorrow. Sounds like UI expects you all up and running by tonight.

  8. Geoff-

    If she called Mike on the Fan, he’d probably yell at her and hang up anyway; not what one wants to spend their precious battery power on. Steve Somers would be nicer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *