Friday, February 20, 2015

Bitter cold and another power outage

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” 
- Charles Darwin

Seems like everything is about snow, cold and power these days. What an interesting February we're having.  And it isn't over yet.

We continue to be caught in the grip of extremely bitter cold.  -30°C/ -22°F cold to be exact.  Relief supposed to come tomorrow for couple of days in a form of a heat wave. We'll get up to a balmy -4°C both Saturday and Sunday.  It's funny how I think of -4°C as a heat wave these days.

Warmer temperature is not the only thing we supposed to get tomorrow.  Snow is on its way as well and that actually makes me happy.  Like I said many times before, I don't like extreme cold, but if it has to be cold, at least give me something to play with.  I keep seeing the great mounds of snow in Boston and New Brunswick  or P.E.I. and I can't help but be a little jealous. I too want to build a tunnel out of my front door all the way to the truck which won't go anywhere.  That would be a story of a lifetime.

This polar vortex that keeps dropping in for a visit, beats the heck out of our fragile grid and last
night we lost the power again. Second time in eight days.  This time it was a little colder outside than last week though.  It was -30°C/ -22°F.  We gathered in the family room which has a fireplace, closed the door, turned on the fireplace and lighted my oil and beeswax candles.  It looked very pretty and cosy in the room but the story was quite different in other parts of the house.  I watched with fascination the plunging temperature on the thermostat.  One degree per hour.

At some point we got the power back but it was short lived.  As a matter of fact I'm not sure what it was exactly because I've never seen anything like that before.  The smoke alarm came on and stayed on, the lights were flickering and dimmed to about 20% output.  The fridge and microwave turned on, but furnace didn't. I thought something went wrong with our house electrical only to find out that everyone in the area was experiencing the same thing.  I killed the smoke alarm by shutting the breaker off.  At some point they took this joke of a power back and darkness resumed.

All in all almost five hours without power and the house temperature dropped to 16°C by 12:30 am. This was quickly turning into a survival situation and we were all ready.  We had the fireplace, the blankets, the light and we were planning on camping in the family room.  We've put warm clothes on and we were quite comfortable.  I was reading The Stand by Stephen King and got to the part where the city started to lose all the power.  I could partially sympathise.

One thing that I find amazing during power outage is how quiet the house gets.  No hums, no rumbles of various gizmos, gadgets and appliances.  Just pure silence.  When the power did come on just before 1 am, it was almost like a monster had come alive and drowned out everything.  I couldn't hear my thoughts any more.

Today the life continues without any inconveniences, but the seed of doubt has been planted.  We simply don't know what tonight will bring.  Or tomorrow.  Or next week.



  1. It's been crazy here as well...13 inches of snow and -18F. Luckily no power outages (yet). So is the power back for good now? Stay warm and safe!

    1. Thank you, same to you Optimistic Existentialist! The power came back on and stayed on. We are good for now. :)

  2. So far, we haven't had it as bad as you guys. The coldest it's been at night is -2 degrees and we haven't had more than 4 inches of snow. We're supposed to be getting 2-5 tomorrow so we'll see.

    It's too bad you keep losing power like that, but at least you have a fireplace. If we lost power, hubby and I would have to snuggle the entire night... and he snores... ;)

    1. Yes, fireplace is a must around here. Last winter we lost power for over 2 days and fireplace was the only thing keeping us warm.

      By the way... my hubby snores like a freight train... so I can feel your pain. :)