Whilst Dee and Jules play videogames downstairs, I sit in a beanbag in my makerspace and contemplate the various hardware projects that I would like to complete over the next couple of years.
We’ve just had a heavy downpour of rain and, likely related, our power has gone out. No electricity means no Internet, which means no work — good time to do some painting (while there is still enough daylight) and write a blog-post now I’ve got my blog client working again. We pour out the lighter of the two shades we’re using in our room and start rolling it on — I finished the taping-off during my lunch-break, so it is a pretty quick process to get the first coat down. We break for a cuppa and I bring down a couple of loads of wood; who wants to be poking around in a spidery woodshed after dark?
Lucy, of course, manages to step in the paint tray and leave a trail of “Mallard Grey” paw-prints from our room, through the kitchen and dining area and finally outside. We mop up and I attempt to wash her paw before deciding it’s probably easier to run around the (very wet) backyard with her until the paint washes off, dries or her foot falls off. Luckily (for both of us) it’s the former.
The paint dries in a couple of hours and Dee puts up a second coat on one wall until it is too dark to see the brush-strokes. Thus stymied, we have a cup of tea from a camp-fire billy (which we use all the time … why are kettles so damn ugly?) and head to Knox shopping centre for dinner and browsing. We hope that by the time we get back our electricity will be restored.
It doesn’t look good on the way back home: we can’t see lights in any houses up our street and even along Bailey Road. Rain has been on and off, some fog and what was quite possibly light hail — we’re happy to be back even if we can’t actually see a damn thing. We light the candles (bought at Knox, lucky!) and set a fire; our heater is electric (and it’s chilly in the mountains). Another cuppa: thankfully we’ve got gas stove-tops!
It’s too dark to read, too dark to do much of anything but sit on the couch, chat and watch the fire. Lucy snuggles up between us and promptly starts to snore. Dee talks about what we will do tomorrow (finishing the painting) and I talk about the Android apps I could be coding (flight sim, to-do). I write a little until the battery runs low and the laptop goes into hibernation.
I find myself enjoying the quiet and the dark. I only miss the Internet a tiny bit.
Just as we’re about to go to bed, the power comes back on! Sitting on the couch, dozing in front of the fire with a glass of scotch in my hand and man’s best friend by my side, listening to the rain and the crackle of wood as it releases all the sunlight that the tree stored up over the years of its life (as R. Buckminster Fuller once put it in a prologue to Critical Path — an excellent read for anyone wishing to expand their mind) … when all of a sudden the lights snap on, white-goods stumble back to their monotonous hum and we are once more on the grid.
It was 3pm when the power went out, which means it took eight and a half hours for “them” to get us back on. I wasn’t expecting to be reconnected until tomorrow morning, really, but perhaps I was being a little pessimistic — although 8 hours is still a long time for a couple of streets to be without power. Should just be glad it didn’t burst to life at 3am and wake us, I suppose.
I pour myself a second whiskey, blow out the candles and finish this post.