After reading this post, you’ll understand my 26-hour absence from blogging this past weekend because that’s exactly how long I was without power in my apartment building.
From 8:00 AM Saturday until 10:00 AM Sunday….ZILCH….no electricity.
Scene: My dark apartment
Time: Saturday, April 21, 2012, 11:45 PM
I wish you could all see me sitting here with one candle illuminating my apartment and praying to God Almighty that the battery on my laptop stays charged until I finish writing this post because for the past THREE hours I’ve been using this computer to play Solitaire because I’m BORED out of my mind. And this is after working all day, eating dinner out because all the food in my refrigerator was destroyed, and then climbing 21 flights of stairs, and taking a shower in the DARK.
Last week will probably go down as one of the most annoying yet, enlightening weeks of my life. Between the TWO false fire alarms that went off in my apartment building on Wednesday, and the TWO Philadelphia power outages (one time for 2 hours, the second time for 26 hours), I was so irritated I could spit thumbtacks. It was a week of electronic maladies.
And isn’t it something how ‘we' bloggers panic when our Internet service is interrupted because our immediate thought is, “OMG…I can’t get online to BLOG!!!!!!”
It’s as if our ‘connection’ to the rest of the world has been taken away; leaving us with no lifeline.
I even tried placing my laptop on the edge of the windowsill and pointed it in the direction of the hotel across the street in the hopes of stealing their Wi-Fi.
*Ooops….I’m getting ready to lose the charge on my laptop, so I’ll have to finish this post tomorrow. Bye!
Scene: My electrically charge apartment
Time: Sunday, April 22, 2012, 10: 25AM
Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay….the electricity is back on!!! Well, a lot happened after the battery on my laptop died last night. Initially, I got more pissed off and frustrated because the Philadelphia Electric Company told us that the power would be on within 3 hours (and that was at 7 PM, Saturday night). But as you could tell from my words above, we still had NO power at 11:45 PM.
Finally, at about 12:30 AM, I decided to throw in the towel and just forget about ever using electricity that night and go to bed. But before I did, I sat on the floor and practiced some mediation and deep breathing exercises to calm myself down.
Suddenly, a light bulb went on in my head! I thought to myself, “Why the hell are you getting so upset, Ron, it’s not the end of the world?”
I mean so what that I couldn’t get online to read emails or respond to comments or blog for 26 HOURS. And so what that I couldn’t use my phone or my DVD player or my stove to make COFFEE. Yeah it was a bummer, no doubt, but I think there was a symbolic lesson for me to learn here.
It’s ironic how when we lose electrical power, we panic because it literally feels as though we’ve lost our power. No phone, no Internet or computer, no lights, no NOTHING.
We feel totally lost and out of touch.
Here I was freaking out over something I had no control over and getting upset was making it worse. It wasn’t a matter of life or death; it was just a temporary inconvenience.
Instead of using this time to just be in the moment and take it for what it was – a time to just be STILL and simply do NOTHING – I was worried about stuff that had no serious importance. Because eventually the power would be restored and life would resume as usual.
Life will always be full of intermissions - things that disrupt our everyday patterns - things that often cause us to see things differently.
I have to say, I think I acted very selfishly during the time of this power outage. All I kept grumbling about was how it was affecting ME. Not even thinking about the electrical workers down on the street, underground, who were working their asses off for 26 hours (in the pouring rain) to get the power restored. Nor was I thinking about the many elderly people who live in this building and were unable to leave their apartments because they couldn’t climb the stairs.
I also realize something else.
It’s good to have intermissions from computers, phones, TV’s, and electronics now and then because it clears the mind. It forces us to be quiet and just do nothing except BE, which is not easy in this technical world of ours.
Oh, and here’s one more thing I learned from this experience.
I’m addicted to BLOGGING....