This will be my first-ever blog post written by candlelight, courtesy of my Verizon 3G hotspot and a generous battery life on the laptop. When you mix a severe combination of snow and ice to trees that still have all of their leaves, you get downed fallen branches by the thousands and power outages all over the area. North Jersey is hit hardest, although Ridgefield, Connecticut also made the news. I have to add Ossining and Briarcliff Manor to the list, as almost 70,000 Con Ed customers in Westchester are entering their second day without power. In all over 2 million are without light.
We've been "camping," as the blackout has robbed us of light and heat. We do have running water and the gas stove works, so it has made for an interesting weekend. For example, reheating food in the microwave is out. Heating it in the fireplace is in!
The fridge has been shut all of the last 36 hours, but the ice has melted. As has the ice cream. We've put the snow outside to good use, harnessing mother nature for some food preservation, and when the orange juice got too warm I improvised myself. It kind of reminded me of a slushy they used to sell at the delis. No high fructose corn syrup here, though!
My cell phone, tablet computer and bluetooth all got recharged in the car today. I am good to go all night with power in 2 batteries for the droid phone. The tablet will have to be off as soon as I am done on the laptop, which should leave me with enough power to check for school closings and weather reports- to say nothing of updates from our utility company- until the morning.
Speaking of the utility company, Con Ed has informed us that we should expect power to be out until 11:50pm on November 2nd. I hope they are subscribing to the "under promise, over deliver" philosophy, because I really could use a shower. A warm one. And it would nice to be able to start living normally again. The kids are in good spirits, but the candle thing doesn't have the same romance for them. I am starting to agree.
Earlier today, we stocked up on firewood and tomorrow, in between earning a living, we'll bone up on the indoor kerosene heater we have in the garage. We have an amazing blower contraption in the fireplace now but it is electric, so I am afraid it is useless to us. Nest year, I install a wood stove. Period.
While I was out, the kids had a ball in the snow. I love how they get into it. For me, I have to get into keeping the fire going all night while we all camp in the living room, and I'll hunt and peck on Ann's laptop until it runs out of juice, or I run out of inspiration, which ever comes first. The blackout has been an inconvenience, and I am glad that today was by and large supposed to be a light day, so no work was lost or missed. But I really hope the power comes back sooner than the second. I just don't have enough Abe Lincoln in me to do three more days of this!