In the Dark

Like millions of other East Coasters last week, my house was without electricity.  The derecho that hit the Mid-Atlantic took out a frightening amount of old, stoic trees and snapped telephone poles in half.  We were very, very lucky that none of those trees walloped our house.  We did retrieve our patio umbrella from the neighbor’s yard, but I can’t complain when some folks woke up to a telephone pole through the windshield.  That’s a crap weekend.

The forced Amish-ness was a good time to stop and reflect.  The 100+ degree heat and no air conditioning slowed everything down to a damp, sticky crawl.  Here are 10 things I realized, in no particular order of importance:

  1. When trying to escape the nighttime heat, reading outside under the stars (with a book light and a glass of wine) is a lovely way to spend an evening.
  2. Going to bed at 9pm is easy when there’s no TV, Internet access, or home phone.
  3. Your grocery bill comes back to haunt you when, after 5 days with no electricity, you have to throw everything in the garbage.  Oh, key lime ice cream with graham cracker swirl — I still pine for you!
  4. I spend way too much time playing Bubble Safari on Facebook.  Way. Too. Much.  This may explain why the laundry is piling up.
  5. Broken trees are a sad, sad sight.
  6. When you come into an 85-degree house and it feels nice and cool, you know it’s ungodly hot outside.
  7. Two under two do not enjoy the heat.  Cade carried his shoes to the back door and repeated “Side?  Side?” many times.  Try explaining to a one-year old that he can’t go outside because his baby swing is melting into a pile of plasticky goo.
  8. Lighting multiple scented candles at once makes for a super funky smell, like suntan lotion mixed with charred potpourri.
  9. The neighbors checked up on the old folks, which is reinforcement that we have a neighborhood full of good people.
  10. Dwight forgets all about his separation anxiety when the electricity’s out.  He headed straight for the basement couch and forgot the rest of us existed. Lack of AC is better than Prozac!
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