Monday, January 02, 2006

When the lights go out

I'm thankful I can knit.

We awoke on New Years Day to no power. Winter storms, with high winds and lots and lots of rain, are moving through the Bay area. Thankfully we live on flat land, about 3 or 4 streets from the nearest creek (more like a large drainage ditch), so we don't have to worry about mudslides or floods. We also don't have any large trees nearby that could fall, but our pond is sure getting full! The winds were pretty fierce yesterday so it's no surprise the power went out. We had a string of outages last fall caused by birds, so high winds are surely going to knock the lines out...and they did. The electricity went out around 9:30 am and was back on about 1 in the morning. Thank you to the men and women of PG&E who went out in that mess to fix the lines. The gas fireplace kept the family room warm while I sat on the couch and knitted all day - or as much as I could stand. I also read a few magazines, catnapped with the cats and listened to the storm reports on the radio.

I was bummed I wasn't able to watch some of the Mummers Parade. I was all set to tape it - WGN shows a few hours of the parade - but no electricity means no TV. I grew up near Philly and remember the parade. We never went to see it but we always watched it on TV every year, mostly to see the elaborate string bands.

Without electricity, we also didn't have hot water. We installed a tankless water heater last week, which will save us about 1/2 on our gas bill. The downside is that since is doesn't store hot water (it heats the water on-demand), there is no hot water when there is no electricity to fire up the burners. We do have a gas stove though, so if I had to have hot water I could heat some.

If there was ever a day to lose power, yesterday was a good one. No bowl games on TV. Lots of knitting to do. I'm thankful to have a solid, dry roof over our heads, warm clothes, a gas fireplace and stove, and plenty of food in the pantry. Life could be a lot worse. A lot. Of course looking out across the street to see that the neighbors had electricity was a bummer, but what can you do?

Today the electricity is on and so are the bowl games. It's back to work tomorrow so I think I'll just enjoy another day on the couch with my knitting and the cats.

Happy New Year!

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