I’ll be honest. We don’t actually live in Seattle. We just claim it because it has one of the five coolest Space Needles of any of the surrounding cities. Our small town is about 45 minutes outside Seattle. But I’d bet my IKEA solar lantern that you’ve never heard of my town so just picture a forest outside Seattle when you think of me and you’ll be about right. A forest past the cow fields.
When the power goes out here, it’s not playing around. This isn’t a small flicker and then BOOM it’s back. No. When the wind blows and the power goes out here, it is the result of the surrounding Ents growing restless and throwing their bodies down across the power lines in a fit of rage. This happened on Saturday night.
The longest we’ve ever been without power was a little over a week . It was cold but fun at first and then super not fun with little freezing kids in the dark and no internet. In 2006 *GASP* we didn’t have smart phones with access to Instagram during an emergency! I know. It makes me cry a little too.
This time around, most of King County had power restored within 24 hours. But we were in this strange pocket right in the middle of our town that didn’t. While everyone around us was relieved to have power, we were still pioneering it… with our house-wired generator and our cute candles and our gas stove and oven in which we baked chocolate chip cookies and our smart phones with 4G internet access.
So yeah. We weren’t like pioneers at all. But we couldn’t use the washing machine or the dishwasher effectively. So, there’s that.
At first the kids were bummed to have to get up and go to school at stupid-o-clock in the morning during a power outage that only affected about 50 homes in our district, but then they became increasingly enamored with the happy drama of it all, to the point that Laylee’s response to the restored power this morning bordered on what my phone has been autocorrecting “outage” to for the past few days – “OUTRAGE.”
It was funny following the community discussion boards on facebook and people were complaining about the power being out and I kept thinking, “…You say from your magically charged smart phone.” I know people were cold and we were blessed to have a fireplace and a generator, but we really do live in a pretty cushy day and age.
Start up the generator so we can watch a movie by candlelight!
And the power came back on this morning. That’s right. We were without electricity for about 55 hours, spanning four days. And we LIVED!
I even learned to hookup, fill, and run the generator. It’s one of those things I’ve always sort of relegated to Dan, along with checking mouse traps and teaching saxophone lessons. But no more. I have claimed my lady power and am fully capable of juicing our house in an emergency.
Like any disaster, we found a few holes where we could stand to be more prepared, but mostly things just went really smoothly. I’m stoked. It’s taken us nearly a decade of living in the “wilderness” but I finally feel ready for almost any moderate power-related disaster where our home is still habitable. Next step. Earthquake prep.