Friday, December 15, 2006
POWER OUTAGE UPDATE-- WE'RE HANGIN' IN THERE!
Thanks for all your good wishes and prayers! The last two storms did not turn out to be as bad as the first one, thank goodness, but there has been lots of rain, and yesterday it snowed 4 slushy, heavy inches and then rained again (now it's sunny!). We did not get the bad winds, thank heavens (we need a break!). But Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, Victoria and the Washington/Oregon coast got it really badly, as Debbie mentioned, and I really feel for them.
We just might get power tomorrow, but I think that is overly-optimistic. I think maybe Weds. They JUST got the power to the ferry terminal on Denman Is. this morning. There are contracted tree-cutters all over the island and they did cut the trees off our power line this morning, but the Hydro crew has to reconnect everything, and there are still big lines down on many of the major roads. So, I don't think they'll get to us for a long time.
I was getting a bit depressed, because it's hard to feel Christmasy, and everything takes so long, it's so dark (unless we get sun, like today), etc., etc. I should be working on the newsletter and the e-book! But, I decided to be positive and regard it as a holiday from work. I'm getting lots of reading done and catching up on sleep, since we get to bed really early! And, after all, how can we feel sorry for ourselves when we think of all we have compared to so many?
We got head-lamps (like cavers use) and that has been great--free hands! We're warm and dry; we're collecting lots of rain-water, so water's not a problem; we have lots of food and are eating really well. We still have our phone, and now we can even have showers and wash clothes nearby! Fortunately, as you know, we have no meat in our freezer, so there's nothing we can really lose. The freezer is old and heavily-insulated and I hadn't defrosted it recently, so it's actually still got ice in it! We are eating the things as they thaw (reconstituted Soy Curls, veggies, etc.) and have not even had to resort to canned and dried foods yet! We use our deck as an outdoor fridge.
It reminds me of when I was young and was "homesteading" with my late husband Wayne and my kids in the 70's. We lived voluntarily without power or running water for 3 years, and without running water for several more! As I washed my hair in the sink yesterday after heating up the water on the woodstove and using a pitcher to wet my hair, I was reminded of the school mornings when my 3 teenage girls would all be doing this every day! We didn't even have a TV in those days either, but we had lots of fun.
It also has made me very aware of the over-consumption at Christmas time, for some reason. I'm not THAT old, but I can remember feeling so thrilled to get a special doll and a few other things. Parents might get eachother a nice article of clothing, or something like that. But ordinary middle class people didn't buy what would have been the equivilant of these games and other pieces of technology that cost hundreds of dollars that people spend,spend, spend (and feel somehow obliged to spend!) now. Most of us think nothing of buying these things for ourselves, anyway, so why do we need other people to get into debt to buy us something more?
We're keeping it really simple this year. Getting together is the main thing. And our extended family is helping out a family member who really needs it right now instead of getting gifts for all the nieces and nephews, etc..
My daughter-in-law Amber did a really nice thing (now that I'm on the subject). We have homeless on Denman Island, believe it or not. A couple of individuals who have been dealt some hard knocks in life and, though very smart and hard-working, have a problem with alcohol. They live in donated vans. Amber pre-paid for some gas for their vans at the local store. A very kind gesture.
To digress, I've been taking photos, but I can't upload them and resize them, so blogging with photos will have to wait. I got out my Chinese stacking bamboo steamers and they have come in handy for reheating leftovers.
What did we have for dinner last night? Frozen potato-and-onion pyrogies (well-- half-frozen!), boiiled and then sauteed in a little Earth Balance with mushrooms and oniosn and a few Soycurls, topped with leftover brown gravy. Spinach salad on the side. No too shabby! Oh, and by candlelight, of course!
All the best!