Oh, Teacup, a Power Outage?

Yes, power outages affect everybody, not just you. Worst possible time? Of course. So, here’s what you need for next one:

Flashlight – a real one, not your cellphone app. You don’t want to run down your phone’s battery. You’ll need your phone to call Power company for an update (add their Emergency and/or Outage Information number to your Contacts) and me to reassure me you’re not dead. Have back up batteries. 3 day power outages are not that unusual.

A battery-powered radio – I’ve been wanting a hand-crank-boosted battery one for years. I do keep one that is both electric and battery backed up. It’s necessary for being connected to emergency information and directives; also great for listening to music or programs in the dark.

Candles – have matches* or lighter right smack next to ’em in drawer or on counter. Have several (one or two matches guaranteed won’t light in an emergency). Votives work great. Place your candles in front of mirrors (away from flammables – your carpeting is very flammable) to expand reflected light.

Molly recently MacGyvered a bunch of votives into a ‘stovetop’, placed a cookie cooling rack over them and placed a metal bowl of water atop it all. The water heated enough for hot tea.

Per light: I keep kerosene lamps handy. We lose power often during winter. Ask at your local hardware store what you need and how to use it. 


Snacks  – that don’t need to be heated. No, don’t just drive to Fast Food. 1. If power’s out, traffic lights won’t be working 2. Jack’s power is probably out too 3. too much sodium.

A neighbor’s phone number – Honey, I told you to exchange phone numbers with a neighbor when you first moved in. If storm is in progress, it’s a good idea to touch base.

Patience – the paper, notes, assignment, etc. you absolutely have to turn in tomorrow has to wait. It’s unsafe and unrealistic to race off to a 24 hour copy center. Their power’s probably out too, like traffic lights en route, etc. Accept that we all encounter limitations we cannot reasonably overcome. Ditto a date, gathering, etc. Sit tight. This, too, shall pass.

Keep warm – Forget the hot bath/shower. The hot water supply is likely affected, as well. Cold water will quickly follow any hot left in the tank. Add clothing layers until you are comfy. Do be dressed enough to leave apartment, if necessary, during power outages and/or storms.

Read – by candlelight. It’s been done for thousands of years. Or meditate, an even older practice. Notice, without frustration, how different your hours without electricity are. Populations the world over live this way daily. Experience awareness.