Sunday, November 13, 2005


Picture if you will: 8:00pm on a cold, blustery Saturday night in suburban Chicago. D has already put the Girl to bed and I join him in the basement after I get the Boy to sleep. I prepare to download some new pictures I've taken when all of a sudden the lights go out. "Shit" D and I say in unison. 5 seconds later it comes back up. With barely enough time to breathe a sigh of relief, it goes out again. This time for good.

First and foremost I hope those of you who go through power outages a little more frequently will forgive me if I sound like a wimp at anytime during this post. Now D and I have been through an outage together while we were dating. We had this huge snow storm that dumped about 2 feet of snow and the power went out. At first it was all romantic as we lit every last candle I had in my condo. Unfortunately 2 hours later the thrill was gone and we went to bed with about 5 layers of clothes on. (Nothing says sexy like 3 pairs of socks, panty hose AND jeans. Yes, it was THAT cold). I can still sorta remember shivering the entire night.

Anyway, the house is now pitch black and it's at that moment I remember the Boy asked to borrow our only flashlight to use as a light saber a few months ago. SHITE! Well, at least we have candles D says knowing how much I love candles. Yes, I respond, but do we have any matches? This would be a good time to mention that I'm pretty sure Chutney is mentally challenged. When D convinced me that a bloodhound was the breed for us I imagined that, God forbid the children were ever lost, our trusted bloodhound wouldn't stop until he lead us to them. This dog couldn't sniff out a skunk in an elevator. What's worse is Chutney is not graceful whatsoever. I constantly hear the thud of him running into a chair or door or wall. At night we are treated to irritating rattling as he tries to get comfortable in his kennel. With no lights Chutney was running into things left and right. I swear we got the only bloodhound on Earth with no sense of smell. D had to comfort Chutney in the basement while I searched for matches in one of the kitchen drawers. The problem with that drawer is that every miscellaneous item that doesn't have a home in our kitchen, including screw drivers and other sharp objects, can be found there. I decided I had to have light if I was going to continue to look. What does a modern girl looking for a light source use? Why her laptop of course. Luckily the battery was charged and set a soft glow in the kitchen as we searched for matches. I followed D around the house with an open laptop in some sort of deleted scene from the Matrix. In the end we couldn't find any and D had to run to the store to buy a lighter and new flashlight. He took Chutney with because:
  1. the dog LOVES riding in the car
  2. it's easier than me having to control him in the darkened house
  3. I think D realizes, as goofy as he is, that dog is a real babe magnet

So there I am, alone in the pitch black house. Luckily the kids are still fast asleep. I stare out our front window and I can see the shadows of our neighbors across the street as they walk across their living room with a flashlight. So far the night is comfortable weather-wise but I worry that the early morning chill may be too much for the kids. I call my dad and find out they have power. We make a plan that if it doesn't come back in a few hours, we'll pack up and stay at their place. I decide to be proactive and gather all the candles from the four corners of the house. Suddenly I feel like a frontier woman. They didn't need little things like running water and electricity to make their homestead complete. I feel empowered and have an overwhelming urge to churn some butter and feed the men-folk. Suddenly I have a fear that the electricity is somehow connected to the water system and that our water will be cut soon so I quickly brush my teeth while I still had the chance. Anyway I figure that D and I will be talking a lot so I may as well have fresh breath. It's only then I remember that D and I had watched the Sixth Sense for Halloween. FUCK! What if a spirit trys to contact me? Good thing I just went to the bathroom so I won't piss in my pants. All of a sudden every shadow cast by the blowing trees outside and every howl that the wind brought is scaring the crap out of me. When D came home about 10 minutes later I nearly jumped into his arms as soon as he walked in. I decided I was so not meant to be a frontier woman.

We now have a working flashlight which makes a world of difference. We light a few candles (my Ginger Peach candle from Pier One smelled so much better in the store) and head to the basement for some good old fashioned conversation. D and I settle down in our family room which is now aglow with flickering candlelight. I made a mental note to take some blog-worthy pictures of it but sadly never got the chance. D barely gets his first sentence out when WHOOSH the power comes back and with it came noise and brightness. I never realized how many things around the house made noise.

Anyway a few things I'll take away from my experience:

  • Never let the Boy play Star Wars with the only flashlight in the house
  • Always keep the laptop battery charged
  • I was so not meant to be a frontier woman
  • Chutney is not the sharpest knife in the drawer


Blogger The Box says...

Please lah! You are SO a frontier woman. I don't care if you have to make it up. And make Chutney eat a fox! Yes! (men in white coats finally arrive).

Mon Nov 14, 02:43:00 AM CST  
Anonymous AB says...

Now I wish I had a laptop to guide me in the dark:(

Mon Nov 14, 03:17:00 AM CST  
Blogger Wandernut says...

Ooooh... scented candles!
*mental note*

Mon Nov 14, 03:28:00 AM CST  
Blogger Sudipta Chatterjee says...

Yeah, in our hostels nbody used to be happier if the lights went out before the exams than us... we had a 'divine' reason to score poorly in our exams.

Mon Nov 14, 04:18:00 AM CST  
Anonymous Pixel8 says...

reminds me of the powercut that happened here a few months back...
how everyone paniced but indians chilled out :P

Mon Nov 14, 06:23:00 AM CST  
Blogger Madame Mahima says...

minty i couldnt stop laughing when i read that
loved the bit on how chutney couldnt sniff out a skunk in an elevator..i swear kelso's exactly the much more dogs being super sniffers and having that sixth sense..its a whole lotta dogcrap!

oh lord when i used to live in africa we had a power outage every 2 days..every house game with its own generator..but yea after living in singapore i've become so spoilt..i throw a hissy fit whenever theres a power every 5 years...for 2 seconds..

Mon Nov 14, 10:52:00 AM CST  
Blogger shakester says...

oh man chutney sounds absolutely adorable, and reminds me of a bumbling and very large retriever of mine...:)
so much for the romanmtic tet-a-tete eh?

Mon Nov 14, 10:14:00 PM CST  
Blogger Anurag says...

Funny. :) I wish you had taken a few pictures...

Tue Nov 15, 06:56:00 AM CST  
Blogger Sneha says...

Hehehe..I was picturising what u wrote and it was very funny and lively!

Tue Nov 15, 07:54:00 PM CST  
Blogger Grafxgurl says...

well.. because bloodhounds werent required to sniff out stuff all that much.. i guess it ran out of their

i love power cuts.. heehee.. well you know we keep a whole larder stock full of candles and matches ( good ol india!).. in the summer its death to everyone....but also.. NO SCHOOL!!

Wed Nov 16, 05:14:00 AM CST  
Blogger Jay says...

Oi, frontier woman - next time just light your candles on the stove.

Thu Nov 17, 05:18:00 AM CST  
Blogger GettingThere says...

In the six years that I have been in the US, we have been through FIVE power outages!! Makes me wonder if I am cursed - hmmmmm. Anyway, I liked your idea of using the screen glow as a guiding light int he dark. I sometimes find my way upstairs (when everyone else is fast asleep and ALL the lights are off) with the help of the backlight on my cell phone.

BTW, a belated thanks for the cyber-hugs you left for me on my blog. I was sort of "down in the dumps" and didn't feel like blogging (or commenting on other blogs, though I visited yours, and a few others, regularly).

Thu Nov 17, 04:09:00 PM CST  

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