Thursday, April 19, 2018

On having no power for three days in Ypsi Town.

By Editor & Publisher Jeff Brown.

A funny thing about having no power in your home for three full days...yeah, its rough, its cold, its dark, but its also enlightening. When the lights fluttered, flickered and finally went out early Sunday morn, it was kinda cool. You know...I went and found the small box I years ago stuffed with old matches, bic lighters, half burned and used candles and crappy little candle stick holders, and a bunch of flashlights, most of which didn't work. This would suffice...I thought.

 How long could the outage last? A couple hours, maybe? Well, a couple hours soon became a whole bunch of hours...and it was getting colder outside Sunday night. Oh yeah, it was also my birthday. I naively continued to think that at any moment the lights and heat would pop back on. Nope.

Sunday afternoon my wife and kids actually convinced me to play a board game. I don't typically enjoy board games but they all wanted me to play Beatles trivial pursuit, and as a true Beatles fanatic I agreed to play. Naturally, I creamed them all. Hmm. Still no lights.

Sunday evening it was dinner with friends at Los Amigos. Surely by the time we got home the power would be back, but you guessed it, no.

After dinner our friends stocked us with a REAL  survival stuff.. chargers, emergency candles, little censor light things, stuff like that..and blankets. Put my piddly box of candles and matches to shame!

Yep, Sunday night was cold!! Monday my wife headed out of town on a long time planned trip with a family member. Hey, I was thrilled for her..pretty much.

Listen, by Monday morning the novelty had already worn off... No coffee, no toaster, no oven, no refrigerator, no microwave, no shower. as for my two kids, they were mercilessly cut off from their computer games, video games, TV, and PS4. How would they survive, they wondered. Ok, they didn't actually say that but I could read their little minds. As for me, I'm a total news junkie...No CNN?! What would I do?! And the house was becoming an ice box, for cripes sake, but I had a plan.

After picking my kids up at school Monday and a brief stop at home, the three of us went to my fav Ann Arbor restaurant the Original Cottage Inn on Williams. It was a great time! Kids pasta for my daughter, chicken Marsala for me, and cheese bread for my son. Ok, I tossed back a couple Miller Lites...What?! There was no way in hell that we could hang out at home in a frigid house Monday night so it was off to game stop and then Barns and Noble. Coolness!

By 9:00 pm we came home to a dark, frigid and ccccold house. The previous night word from DTE was that the estimated time of power restoration was 11:30 pm April 18! Oy! It was late, it was dark, it was cold, but my daughter and I decided to play Stratego, an old favorite game of mine when I was a kid, by candle light at the dining room table.

The three of us, myself, and my young kids went to bed burying ourselves under thick protective layers of blankets, several of which loaned to us by the same neighborhood friends who had the for real survival stuff! My kids and I talked about what life must have been like over a century go before we had electricity in the United States.

Oh, let me tell ya, Monday night was a mean, nasty, dark, and bone chilling kind of a night! But, we would survive, I knew it!

Tuesday morning the thermostat was at a very brisk 46 and my 9 year old daughter was not happy...and she was quite concerned about the current state of mind of our cat Sirius Black. "Dad, Sirius is scared. His head is totally flat, his ears are sticking up and there are tears in his eyes." I weakly say, "Oh, he's ok."

Miraculously, on day 3 of no power, DTE trucks arrived to our little section of Ypsilanti, and by the time the kids and I arrived home after picking them up at school, (glory be!), the power was back on! Holy cripes!

No sooner than the lights and heat go back on, my daughter says, "Dad, I kind of miss the family bonding we had when the power was out."

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