Okay, so it's not THAT bad to go without power for 24 hours over the course of a weekend, when not having power means no light, no stove, no heat, no hot water. It's not even that bad with an international houseguest, a tank of fish (with thermometer's mercury dipping lower and lower), and a newly jam-packed freezer full of food just purchased earlier in the week. It's not so bad when you're caught in the middle of a pretty remarkable windstorm, even when your husband is hollering "Get the F inside, it's a TORNADO!!" and tree branches and telephone poles are falling pretty much all over the place.
It was freakin' cold this morning, and not being able to have a hot shower or the ability to make coffee or make/post my Sunday Funny, is a total freakin' drag, but really, not the end of the world. It's WEIRD to not be able to check my email, or watch TV, or listen to music. And I noticed the lack of ambient sounds: no fridge, no computer fans, no fishtank filter, etc. But it certainly wasn't a horrific ordeal for us, even if it was a fairly big pain in the ass. After all, it was a sunny day, and we had good company, cell phones, blankets, socks, and a car with a radio, and the ability to use the toilets, and the means to buy coffee and breakfast sandwiches at a nearby shop, along with some newspapers, etc. etc. etc.
What sucks about this particular tale is that we called PSE&G last night, after several hours with no power, to find out what was going on, and the recording said we'd be back up at (exactly) 11:21 p.m. Saturday night. Which came and went. We woke up this morning, and we still had no power, and Glen called again, and first, got a recording, which informed him that we had lost power, but it had been restored. So he pressed some buttons, and was connected to the not-so-helpful Mr. Nixon, who told Glen that our neighborhood was getting "energized;" Glen asked what that meant, and Mr. Nixon says, "Just what that means." Whatever.
A few hours later, around 10:30 a.m., we still had no power, and it was getting colder, and we were growing more worried about the tropical fish (who have lived through some particularly lousy conditions, but never this sort of persistent cold), and the food in the freezer, so Glen called back, and again reached Mr. Nixon, who said, "Now sir, listen to me. Have you seen Ohio?" And Glen pretty much lost his mind: "NO, YOU LISTEN TO ME," Glen began. "No, I haven't seen Ohio. WE DON'T HAVE POWER, and it's cold. Can you tell me when we'll have power?" And Mr. Nixon couldn't answer. So, after that exchange, Glen and Brenda (his sister, the international visitor), decided to do some shopping, and I figured I'd wait to be "energized", and read, except I was too cold to concentrate, even with two cats sitting on me. I decided to call PSE&G myself, and got an automated message (apparently Mr. Nixon packed it in after Glen's second phone call), which said our power would be restored at "11:59 p.m. on Monday. Thank you for calling PSE&G. Goodbye!!" I was disconnected, and immediately called back, to make sure I heard the recording properly. I did. Since there was no option to speak to a human, unless I had an emergency to report (and who knows, maybe we were getting close to that?) I decided to call their automated, non-emergency number another 100 times, hoping to run up their phone bill, since they obviously weren't paying their crews to work on our area (because it's Trenton, maybe?). Then Glen and Brenda came back, and made me put the phone down. I needed to get changed out of my jammies, which was terrible — because it was about 55 degrees in here; it's terrible to change in that sort of temperature — because we were going shopping, and then to lunch, and then possibly a movie, if the power was still out when were done.
Even though we were promised power by 11:21 p.m. LAST NIGHT (Saturday), and then we were promised that we were getting "energized" in the early morning on Sunday, we could tell by the two downed poles on Olden, and broken tree in the street, and smashed vehicle, that "energizing" was a way off. We understood there was a storm, and shit happens in a storm, but it would be nice to just know what the hell the real problem was: the poles and lines were down, and everything was a mess.
Anyway, screw Mr. Nixon, and people who told him AND the automated messages what to say. We just got home around 7 p.m. to find a massive fleet of PSE&G trucks and Trenton Police officers working to clean up the mess. Hallelujah! We drove down our street, and saw porch lights, hoping we'd see our porch lit up too. And we did. Power is restored (though it's amazing to contemplate, given the mess currently all over Olden Avenue). Fish are okay. Food is okay. Glen is in the shower, and I still haven't made my Sunday Funny. Sorry about that. I'm working on it, and hopefully, it should be up by Wednesday.
Several people called us to check on us; thanks for that, and offering us warmth, food, libations. We're glad to be home. Maybe we can get together when we're all cleaner!
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