Blackout

| May 18, 2007 | 4 Comments

Will and I were driving, planning on running a few errands, yesterday when we first glimpsed the dark – almost black – storm clouds. We headed home instead. Fat raindrops began to fall around us as we went inside. By the time I reached the rear of the house to let the dogs out, rain was coming down in swirls, pounding the house and the ground. The storm had come on very suddenly. Wild winds tugged at the trees and branches outside.

Thunder rolled in, with intermittent flashes of lightning. I dashed through the house, shutting the windows as raindrops burst through the screens on all sides of the house. And when it was all over, only sporadic rain, darkness and silence remained. No power, no familiar hum, nothing.

I never imagined a 4 p.m. power outage would last more than a few minutes, an hour at the most. After all, the fierce storm blew in and out with relative quickness. But the outage remained through the night and into today.

Yesterday, Will and I played, unable to leave the house for wet conditions. And time wore on and on. I called the electric company once, twice, three times, with no clear picture of when our power would return.

Dinner sat, partially cooked, in the Crock-Pot. That wasn’t meant to be. Finally I called for a pizza, learning that the pizza parlor was serving pies and salads only. Fortunately, a pie was all we needed.

Driving through town was an eerie ride. Darkness was everywhere – stoplights extinguished, businesses closed, houses unlit. Even the pizza parlor we went to sat in darkness (thank goodness for alternative power sources for the pizza ovens).

Across town, things were worse. Trees tugged at power lines and over a dozen roads were closed. Travel was near impossible. We returned home, thankful I’d gotten cash back at the grocery store that morning. The pizza hit the spot.

Another call to the phone company revealed an estimated return of power – 11 p.m., today, more than a day later. Will headed off to bed in semi-darkness leaving me alone.

Our house isn’t prepared for instances like this. Candles are few, and hidden. Matches are nearly non-existent. I rounded up supplies for the darkness, wishing that the recording got it wrong. Then I rushed around, clearing spots on tables and removing obstacles. A dark night would be a tough one in our rural home. Then I stepped out onto the still-light porch and did something I don’t do often: I read. For hours I read, first on the porch until the last lights died away. Then later on our bedroom which I lit up with dancing flames on wicks around the room.

And all I could think last night was how grateful I was to the staff of My Place for dishing out the pizzas without power so people like us could still eat dinner. And how grateful I was for living in a town where the drivers were so considerate of each other, taking turns and not rushing through intersections when the lights were out. It’s a good place to live.

Category: Thoughts

About the Author ()

Sarah Walker Caron is a freelance writer, editor and recipe developer. Her work has appeared in countless online and print publications including iVillage, BELLA NYC Magazine, Yum for Kids magazine and more. She lives in Connecticut with her two kids, two beagles and husband.

Comments (4)

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  1. Sarah says:

    I thought we would get hit worse, but we didn’t, thank goodness – if we lose power, the pump for the well doesn’t work :)

  2. Virtual Frolic says:

    Although the first hour or so of a blackout suck (mostly panic in finding candles/flash lights and such), I’ve found most blackouts (even the major NYC one) to be kind of fun in the end. You end up relaxing, hanging out with friends and doing things you usually don’t even consider doing because watching tv is so easy! haha. You end up getting an awesome night of sleep too – becasue you got to bed so early! Glad you have power again and thank goodness for the pizza place!

  3. Tonia says:

    I enjoyed reading that. It had all the makings for a spooky story – lol. We had a bad storm last night, but we didn’t lose power thank goodness.

  4. Patti says:

    Glad the pizzeria came through for you and yours…what an adventure you guys had.

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